Universiteit Leiden

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Course Design

The course designs will be different from our usual 2x2 hours seminar per week. Your instructors have used their experiences from last academic year to design their courses and are committed to giving you the best educational experience possible within the constraints that we have. Please understand that online teaching development is very intensive and time consuming, so be understanding and work with your instructors to create a good classroom.

  1. Each course instructor will decide to use either a fully online course or a hybrid online- on campus course. Of course, we hope to offer you as much on campus teaching as possible, but we trust you will understand that this depends on many factors. Your instructors have their own health and the health of their families to look after, they may not want to use public transport or can feel uncomfortable in groups of people. These are personal decisions. They will all do their very best to give you a good course.
  2. Even if a course starts in a hybrid manner, this may change if your instructor, or their family members, get ill, or if government regulations change.
  3. Each course ideally has one a-synchronous session per week. This can be a recorded lecture, a podcast, videos, knowledge clips or any other resource students can access at their own time from their own work environment. This creates space for more flexible use of the scheduled hours and also allows students in different parts of the world to study at times that suit their time zone.
  4. Each course uses the two sessions in the timeslots for synchronous teaching, either online or on campus (within the regulations of maximum 7-9 students per class room). On campus classes may be streamed to online participants. It is possible that you will only have one on campus session per week due to these limitations.
  5. Online classes can take a wide range of shapes and activities, with the full class or just half of the students, or using break out rooms or other alternatives.
  6. We trust our course instructors to choose the design that suits the course, the learning outcomes and their own situation best. If you feel the course is not going very well, please contact your instructor to talk about this and do not wait until the end of the course.
  7. Nearly two hours online is tiring and all instructors have been asked to include a break so all can rest their eyes, stretch their legs, go to the bathroom or get some water. You can kindly ask your instructor for a break if none is planned. For your part, wait until the break for these activities, as you would during an on campus class.
  8. If are not yet in The Hague, please contact course instructors of hybrid courses to discuss how you can interact with your peers and course instructor.
  9. Recording online classes is not compulsory, but can be discussed in class. The vast majority of students now plans to be in The Hague and time-zone differences should be less of a problem. The feedback from last academic year indicates that both instructors and students were at times apprehensive about recording classes; some students did not feel comfortable to participate when class was recorded, some sensitive topics may not be discussed well if the session is recorded, and not all sessions lend themselves equally well for recording or watching afterwards. If a class is recorded, all participants should be informed about this each time. Students are allowed to switch off their camera if the session is recorded. Recording a class session without explicit permission from your instructor and classmates , also if recording on another device, is not allowed.
  10. In the regular teaching model, there usually is some time for students before or after a class to ask short practical questions or have a chat with an instructor. Online this is more difficult and this needs to be planned. Please use the office hours for the course, contact your teacher via email or the MS Teams chat function, or make an appointment if needed.
  11. Some courses will have a Teaching Assistant Intern, a fellow student who will support the course instructur in the design, development and teaching of the online/hybrid course, including the use of Brightspace. The Intern will not be involved in the assessments of students.
  12. As with all online educational activities, it depends on all users and contributors how useful the class is. Take your responsibility as well! Talk about what is and is not working, let your instructor know if you enjoyed a particular class or activity.
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