Faculty Certification FAQ
Which training option is right for you?
Why is faculty certification a requirement to teach online at UMKC?
The Higher Learning Commission (HLC), the agency that accredits UMKC, has established nine standards for measuring the quality of online courses, programs, and instructors (see Guidelines for the Evaluation of Distance Education). Standard 6 states “Faculty responsible for delivering the online learning curricula and evaluating students’ success in achieving the online learning goals are appropriately qualified and effectively supported.”
In 2015, UMKC made efforts toward meeting this requirement by adopting a policy that online courses and instructors be certified. This policy stipulates that all faculty teaching online courses must complete training to demonstrate they are qualified to teach online at UMKC and therefore meet Standard 6 for HLC accreditation.
How do I become certified as a faculty member to teach online?
Faculty can now choose from three different routes to certification:
Route 1: UMKC Online Boot Camp
Format: One-week, on-campus, offered twice each year in May and August.
In the Boot Camp, participants learn about online teaching pedagogy, get hands-on training in the most current technology tools, and work one-on-one with instructional designers from the UMKC Online Team to develop their own online course.
Route 2: Faculty Certification in Online Teaching and Learning
Format: Three-week, online asynchronous, offered most months of the year.
Taught online using Blackboard, the course is facilitated by an instructor who is a member of the UMKC Online team. Participants explore pedagogical best practices for quality online teaching, learn guidelines for creating accessible course content, and practice using technology tools from a learner perspective to determine which will work best in their online courses.
Route 3: Self-paced Faculty Certification
Format: Self-paced, online asynchronous, offered continually.
This newest certification course is competency based and unfacilitated. Through pre-built learning activities and quizzes, faculty demonstrate their understanding of online teaching pedagogy and their ability to use the technology tools available at UMKC. Successful completion of training modules on accessibility standards, assessment strategies, and student engagement is required. The highlight of this new route to certification is that there are no defined schedules or due dates. Faculty and staff can enroll and complete the activities on their own timeline – over a couple of days or a couple of months.
Which route to certification is right for you?
While the new self-paced course can be completed at any time, it is not facilitated by an instructor. Those new to teaching online, who have limited technical skills or who prefer a defined schedule may benefit more from the in-person Boot Camp or 3-week asynchronous online training course. View this helpful chart for more information deciding the path you want to take to achieve faculty certification to teach online at UMKC.
What is the deadline for completing certification?
Faculty teaching for-credit online courses with the attribute of Online Synchronous (OS), Online Asynchronous (OA) or any for-credit hybrid/blended (OC) course will be required to complete the certification process by the fall semester of 2018.
While this date seems far away now, those in academia know how new projects, grants, or other activities may easily arise. Our advice is to not delay, and enroll today in one of these three flexible routes to achieve faculty certification to teach online at UMKC.