Principles of Good Practice for Distance Learning Courses
Distance learning at NFHTA is technology-enabled teaching and delivery outside the traditional classroom. The content of NFHTA's distance learning courses is no different than what is offered in the classroom, except in mode of delivery. Students should expect to devote six to eight hours per week to successfully complete all course work.
Students in NFHTA’s distance learning courses may work through the curriculum at their own pace, but are required to meet milestones and deadlines at specified times throughout the course. When students work through the course materials in accordance with the suggested deadlines, the best learning outcomes, opportunities for collaboration and debate, and networking are created.
NFHTA distance learning courses will:
- Provide an interactive learning experience during the course.
- Encourage instructor-to-peer and peer-to-peer collaboration.
- Provide rigor of courses and quality of instruction.
- Provide current, relevant materials.
- Evaluate the learning content for effectiveness by assessing instructor performance and student learning outcomes.
- Contain appropriate tools that enhance the learning process, such as quizzes, scenarios, case studies, etc.
- Include visual, auditory, and kinesthetic exercises to accommodate different learning styles.
- Comply with accessibility standards.
- Have course materials ready for students no later than the first day of the course. This will include syllabus, course schedule, and all materials to be used by students for the course.
- Respond to all student e-mails, discussion boards, etc. within 24 hours.
- Ensure students are aware of the consequences of non-participation.
- Make efforts to contact a student who enrolled but did not engage in the course as required.
- Give timely assessments of students that is appropriate and responsive to the needs of the individual learner.
- Continually review and evaluate the course for content relevancy and effectiveness.
- Be available during posted offices hours via e-mail, phone, discussion boards, etc.
Active student participation and interaction are required for all NFHTA distance learning courses, as they are vital to experiencing success. If interaction and participation by the student do not occur during the first week of class, efforts will be made by the instructor to contact the student. If non-participation continues beyond the first week, an e-mail will be sent to the student and his/her supervisor outlining the consequences for non-participation. In addition to reading and studying online course material, students must meet the following requirements:
- Students will receive a welcome e-mail from their instructor and may be asked to briefly introduce themselves by answering a few commom questions.
- Students will be asked to participate in surveys and Q-and-A activities in the course's interactive "Meeting Room."
- Students may interact with their instructors in chat or using any bulletin boards created for the course.
- Students may contact their instructors with course-related questions using the appropriate e-mail address for the course instructor.
- Students should log in approximately three to five times per week to actively engage with other students, respond to classmate posts, and check their e-mail for instructor updates and announcements. Classroom participation may require students to self-arrange virtual meetings with classmates to complete group assignments.
Students must complete all assignments by the due date. To give instructors sufficient time for grading and providing feedback, the last day for submission of assignments is three days prior to the end of the course. All coursework and the final exam must be submitted by the last day of class.