Deans, directors, and professional staff members from the Big Ten Academic Alliance (formerly the Consortium for Institutional Cooperation) have convened via phone and video conference for several years now to discuss their online efforts. This summer, the Office of Online Education (OOE) gave them the opportunity to meet for the first time face-to-face.
Online education leaders from eight Big Ten universities joined OOE in Indianapolis to share their knowledge and experiences with online pedagogy, curriculum development, technologies, marketing and recruitment, support services, and business practices.
Executive Vice President John Applegate provided participants with an overview of IU’s vision for online education and highlighted IU’s collaborative approach to developing academic programs and services within the multi-campus university. OOE presented sessions about compliance, organizational structure, resources, and curricular design. IU’s eLearning Design Services, which works with faculty to create online courses, provided a demo showcasing leading-edge technology in developing an interactive and engaging online course; and attendees shared a variety of their institutions' best online practices.
The main purpose of the gathering, said OOE Director Chris Foley, was to strengthen the bonds that have formed over the past several years among Alliance members and encourage sharing of information among the members of the Big Ten.
Participating institutions included Michigan State, Northwestern, Ohio State, Penn State, Purdue, Illinois, Iowa, and Minnesota. The members agreed that the face-to-face meeting should become an annual meeting.