UAF eCampus Reports |
The University of Alaska Fairbanks eCampus annual report is produced each year to chronicle UAF eCampus activities.
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2019-20 Annual Report

5,994

STUDENTS

Up 5% from FY19

550

COURSES

Total of 943 sections

47,750

STUDENT CREDIT HOURS

Up 10% from FY19

STUDENT SERVICES

Faith Fleagle waves at someone calling in on the double robot.

eCOACHING

Starting fall 2019, students in UAF eCampus-supported programs and courses have access to the eCoaching program. This free service is designed to help students succeed no matter what obstacles pop up. Students have access to one-on-one meetings with the following coaches:

  • Transitions Coach
  • Registration Support
  • Financial Coach
  • Academic Success Coach
  • Career Coach
  • Tech Support
More About eCoaching

ALASKA ADVANTAGE

The Alaska Advantage program offers high-achieving high school students the opportunity to take college courses for both high school and college credit.

Within its first year, the Advantage program served 208 high school students around the state. They earned 1,067 student credit hours.

Twenty-nine school districts have joined as of fall 2020; 313 high school students are currently enrolled in 152 UAF courses, earning 1,491 students credit hours. Learn more.

See more facts and figures from Alaska Advantage’s first year.

Map of Alaska with stars pinpointing where Advantage students are located.

The Alaska Advantage program served high school students in 45 communities around the state.

ONLINE TUTORING

UAF eCampus provided support to the Debbie Moses Learning Center at UAF Community and Technical College. The Center serves college and high school students through resource-sharing and tutoring to help them develop math and language skills.

UAF eCampus set up a platform for online math tutoring, partially funded a math tutor and loaned technology to better serve students. More information about tutoring resources for online students.

1,679

PEOPLE INQUIRED ABOUT UAF’S ONLINE PROGRAMS

UAF eCampus supports online programs with marketing, recruitment and retention strategies. The online programs that get the most inquiries are Bachelor’s Degree Completion, BA in Psychology, Medical Coding Occupational Endorsement and the BBA in Business Administration.

EXAM SERVICES

This year, the UAF eCampus Exam Center successfully merged with Testing Services and was rebranded as UAF eCampus Exam Services. This new one-stop location includes two testing rooms in the Bunnell Building. In addition to proctoring for UAF courses, we administer hundreds of national exams through various testing vendors, organize and administer SAT and ACT testing for local high school students, and serve as proctors for State of Alaska exams including the Alaska State Bar.

UAF eCampus Exam Services onboarded National Testing Network (NTN) as a new testing vendor this year. Before UAF partnered with NTN, first responders had to travel outside of Alaska to take career-progressing exams. Now, we can serve Alaska’s first responders on our Fairbanks campus.

A student taking paper exam.

DEPARTMENT SUPPORT

U.S. News & World Report Best Online Programs for Bachelor's in 2020

BEST ONLINE BACHELOR’S PROGRAMS

University of Alaska Fairbanks earned a spot in the top 100 colleges in U.S. News & World Reports’ 2020 rankings of the best online bachelor’s programs. This is the fifth year in a row that online programs at the University of Alaska Fairbanks have received national recognition from U.S. News & World Report. In 2020, UAF’s online programs earned spots on the following lists:

  • Best Online Bachelor’s Programs
  • Best Online MBA Programs
  • Best Online Master’s in Criminal Justice Programs
  • Best Online Master’s in Education Programs

See rankings.

GROWING NUMBER OF COURSES

On a daily basis, UAF eCampus instructional designers work with instructors and departments to develop brand new courses and improve existing courses.

This year, UAF added 115 new courses to its catalog of online courses.

  • Number of eCampus Courses Offered

ONLINE STEM

The University of Alaska Fairbanks offers a strong and growing suite of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) courses online.

Explore UAF’s online STEM offerings.

“If faculty are given sufficient time and guidance to develop quality online courses, learning can be just as good or better than in face-to-face courses.”

— Diana Wolf, associate professor in UAF’s Department of Biology and Wildlife and Institute of Arctic Biology, in “My journey teaching an online course”

164

ONLINE STEM COURSES

NEW ONLINE PROGRAMS

The UAF eCampus team offers a full range of support to academic departments that want to develop fully online degrees. This year, six new programs were added. See UAF’s full list of online programs:

Arctic and Northern Studies
Justice Administration
MBA (General Management)
MBA (STEM)
Security and Disaster Management
Special Education

Arctic Security
Business Continuity
Cybersecurity Management

Accounting
Special Education

Biology
Accounting
Applied Management
Bachelor’s Degree Completion
Business Administration
History
Homeland Security and Emergency Management
Justice
Political Science
Psychology
Sport and Recreation Business

Applied Accounting
Applied Business
Early Childhood Education
Information Technology Specialist
Paralegal Studies
Associate of Arts
Associate of Science

Accounting Technician
Applied Business Management
Early Childhood Education
Health Care Reimbursement
Information Technology Specialist
Medical and Dental Reception

Administrative Assistant
Bookkeeping Technician
Financial Services Representative
Medical Billing
Medical Coding
Medical Office Reception
Supervision and Personnel Management

FACULTY DEVELOPMENT

NEW FACULTY DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMS

Two new faculty development programs were started in June 2020: Course Spotlights and Community Seminars.

Course Spotlights give instructors an opportunity to take a peek into quality online courses taught by their peers at UAF. Selected faculty and instructors host a tour and Q&A of their course. Thus far the series has supported courses in a range of disciplines from biology to special education. Take a tour.

"Spotlight Courses" on top of a graphic of a person on a laptop.

Community Seminars invites the UAF community to learn from each other. Seminars are led by faculty who’ve had success with a particular aspect of or approach to teaching and learning. Browse the archives.

Community Seminars in Teaching & Learning graphic with two people talking

GROWING ACCESSIBILITY

UAF eCampus hosted 30-minute presentations on course accessibility Aug. 12-22. The series, called Growing Accessibility, offered tools for instructors to incorporate accessibility measures into their courses, both online and in-person.

  • Aug. 12: Squash Confusion with Document Structure
  • Aug. 13: Peas, Write Alt-Text for Images
  • Aug. 14: Asparagus the Excuses: Make Your Own Captions
  • Aug. 15: Start Sprouting Accessible PDFs
  • Aug. 19: Endive into an Accessible Google Drive
  • Aug. 20: Turnip Blackboard’s Accessibility with Ally
  • Aug. 21: Tomayto, Tomahto: Give Users Options with Texthelp’s Read & Write
  • Aug. 22: The Rad-ish World of Assistive Technology

Watch the recorded presentations.

View the slides from all of the presentations:

653

HOURS OF FACULTY DEVELOPMENT

This number is up 40% from FY19. UAF eCampus offers a wide variety of faculty development opportunities for all faculty, instructors and TAs. Find resources at iTeachU.uaf.edu.

92

INSTRUCTORS WHO COMPLETED A LONG-FORM PROGRAM

Not included in the hours of faculty development is our support for instructors who commit to one of our long-form faculty development programs. These programs require 25 to 100 hours of commitment from the instructors. Explore our current programs.

BLACKBOARD BOOTCAMP

UAF eCampus instructional designers hosted Blackboard Bootcamp, a workshop for faculty, instructors and TAs who are new to Blackboard. Participants gained experience with the basics: making a course available, creating announcements, adding content, creating a discussion forum, and collecting assignments, quizzes, and exams
. Blackboard is used by many courses at UAF and with the growth in online teaching and learning, Blackboard Bootcamp is now offered every month with additional workshops before the start of every semester.

UAF eCampus Blackboard Bootcamp

BLACKBOARD BITEZ

Blackboard Bitez is a new series of short videos to help instructors learn how to use the tools in Blackboard more effectively. Topics include setting course navigation, using the assignment tool and navigating to a discussion board. See the collection of Blackboard Bitez.

Watch this Blackboard Bitez about using Blackboard Grade Center:

IN THE SPOTLIGHT

Wendy Croskey smilingWendy Croskrey, an art professor and CITE Fellow, and her team won UAF’s 2019-20 Inspiration Award for the Best Faculty Invention Disclosure as part of the Innovative Disclosures and Entrepreneurial Activities (IDEAs) awards. “Spruce Sap Extrusion Wax,” which was part of her eCampus-supported CITE Fellows project, was selected as the top faculty-led innovation with the highest commercial readiness, capacity to make an immediate impact, potential to scale, and capabilities of the lead innovator or innovative team.

FACULTY LEARNING COMMUNITIES

FLC logoFaculty Learning Communities (FLCs) brought together faculty from across UAF to study and create shareable resources around a current topic in teaching and learning. In 2019-20, FLCs included trauma-informed pedagogies, best practices for high-enrollment online courses, and best practices for dual-enrollment online courses. FLCs are supported by a partnership between UAF eCampus, the Provost’s Faculty Development Team, and the Faculty Development and Improvement Committee.

FACULTY ACCELERATOR

UAF eCampus provided leadership and support for the recent launch of the Faculty Accelerator, which is now the central faculty development body at UAF. The Accelerator is comprised of partners from across campus with a shared goal to create an ecosystem of support for faculty. Current partners are: eCampus, the Provost’s Faculty Development Team, the Faculty Development and Improvement Committee, CenterICE, the Vice Provost’s Office, and the Graduate School. Some of the goals of the Accelerator are to provide support for improving grant writing, submission and publication metrics; increase access to events and opportunities for rural, remote and distance faculty; build new-faculty community, starting with orientation; and establish effective teaching practices along with meaningful faculty self-assessment.


COVID-19 RESPONSE

In March 2020, COVID-19 changed the landscape of higher education. Spring break was extended and the remainder of the spring semester and the whole summer semester were fully remote experiences for both instructors and students. As the university’s resident experts on successful online learning experiences, the team at UAF eCampus expanded its already robust suite of faculty development events, created guides for instructors and new-to-online students, and held the (virtual) door open for anyone needing assistance.

1,302

TOUCHPOINTS

The instructional design team logged a record year of interactions with faculty. Nearly 400 of these touchpoints took place between March and June of 2020.

1,131

COURSES CONVERTED

In March alone, the instructional design team helped instructors covert more than 1,000 courses from face-to-face to distance learning.

LEVEL UP

To support faculty moving to remote teaching during the pandemic, the UAF eCampus Design Team created Level Up: Foundations and Innovations in Online Learning in summer 2020. Level Up invited faculty to start where they were and level up their distance learning practice using student engagement, backwards and inclusive design, and video creation. With 25 hours of programming over the course of a single week in May, instructional designers supported 39 faculty from over 18 different departments across the university. Interest in the program was so high that the Design Team offered a second Level Up later in the summer, hosting over 20 more faculty for the second training.

Meet the Level Up team:

OPEN LABS AND DROP-IN SUPPORT

The UAF eCampus instructional design team offers daily open lab and drop-in support for faculty, instructors and TAs. Anyone teaching at UAF can get one-on-one assistance troubleshooting problems in Blackboard, Google Suite for Education, WordPress and other instructional tools. Instructional designers also provide consultation for incorporating teaching strategies and technology, as well as assist with developing curriculum, creating assessments, and so much more. During the peak of transitioning to online learning, eCampus hosted record numbers of open lab and drop-in support. Find Open Labs on the eCampus Faculty Development Calendar.

Graph showing a spike in faculty who attended Open Labs. In March, 140 faculty logged in. In April, 72 faculty logged into an Open Lab.

Sean Walklin teaching in his chef's coat on the left and then again in a UAF sweatshirt in front of his computer on the right.

UAF culinary instructor Sean Walklin teaching students in the kitchen at Hutchison Center (left) and from home after COVID-19 forced campus to close (right).

TEACHING TIPS FROM INSTRUCTORS AS THEY ADAPTED

UAF eCampus produces weekly articles called Teaching Tips. These one-page tips cover best practices, pedagogy, tools, emerging ideas and more. With spring 2020 being an unprecedented semester, eCampus wanted to highlight unique faculty perspectives on how they adapted their teaching in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. A group of faculty wrote about their experiences, shared lessons learned and reflected on how COVID-19 may shape their future teaching practice.

Early reflections about what worked and what we learned by Jennifer Tilbury

Existing online courses not immune to COVID-19 changes by Sean Holland

Fostering engagement in online discussion by S. Ryan Oliver

Effective distance teaching through flexibility by Mike Koskey

Finding community and humor in a changed classroom by Zoe Marie Jones

STUDENT SUPPORT

The Student Support team at UAF eCampus created and shared tips for both new-to-online students and experienced online students who were now juggling a lot more than they originally planned.

Read and download Adjusting Your Habits for Success in Distance Classes (PDF)

Access the Student Technology Toolkit

UAF eCampus Advisor Brighton Brooks and others went on to adapt these resources for virtual live and recorded Zoom sessions for fall 2020 students. Click this image and use passcode 65k4kr=# to watch a recorded Intro to Blackboard session.

Screenshot of a Blackboard shell that says "Stay safe and see you soon" with an image of Brighton in the top right corner.

WORKING FROM HOME

Like everyone at UAF and around the country, the eCampus team quickly adapted to working from home (or any place we could find with good internet). Take a quick tour of our new normal!

Kendell Newman Sadiik at her desk with her 5-year-old son on her back.

Kendell Newman Sadiik, UAF eCampus faculty development manager, epitomizes the extra weight many of us have been carrying this year.

A moose peeking into the window.

Owen Guthrie, UAF eCampus Executive Director, gets an unexpected visitor in his new home office.

A pen-and-watercolor sketch of a man with headphones on.

Jennifer Moss, UAF eCampus instructional designer and adjunct, created some no-look sketches during Zoom meetings. “No-look or blind-contour drawings are an exercise in drawing without looking at the paper,” she said. “They rarely turn out to look very realistic and are meant to capture the essence.” You can find more of her sketches and commentary on Instagram @jennifermossart.

Karina with a corgi wearing a hat sitting on her lap in front of a desk with two monitors.

Karina Gonzales-Smith, UAF eCampus faculty services coordinator, still gets dressed for work every day (so does her dog, Sadie. Note the hat!).

A laptop and ceramic mug on a table in front of purple flowers and lush green grass.

When the weather allows, Jenn Pedersen, UAF eCampus course and program manager, works from her back porch.

Sean Holland sitting at his home computer with his two daughters on his lap.

Sean Holland, an instructional designer and instructor within the School of Education, is joined by his daughters on a video call.

A chicken standing on the back of a chair.

Scooter likes to hover over Shayla Sackinger, UAF eCampus graphic designer and student worker, while she works and attends virtual meetings.

Halibut and noodles on a polka dot plate.

After her son caught a 100-pound halibut in Valdez, Jennifer Young, UAF eCampus finance officer, made butter-seared halibut over pesto angel hair for lunch.

A calico cat sitting on a lap while a hand types on a keyboard.

Bonnie is really enjoying having Jessica Armstrong, UAF eCampus admissions counselor, home during the day — except when Zoom calls interrupt her nap time.