An Online Departmental Course (ODC) is a Quality Matters (QM) certified, fully-online course used as a standard foundation for developing and teaching a consistent set of learning objectives across multiple sections. You can think of these courses as templates of pre-populated, quality-assured learning materials, assignments, and resources for both students and faculty. The ideal candidates for an ODC course are those with high enrollment, multiple sections, or those taught predominantly by adjuncts and teaching assistants.
ODCs are collaboratively developed by a faculty lead or faculty committee, instructional designers, and quality assurance and support staff. ODC team members use an extensive process to curate relevant course content, create aligned assessments, construct a custom instructor guide, and develop impactful learning activities. Collaboration between faculty and the ODC team continues beyond the initial course launch to ensure ongoing improvement and success.
Benefits of Online Departmental Courses
- Reduces course development time for instructors
- Delivers consistent instruction across sections of an ODC
- Improves manageability of high-enrollment courses
- Thorough Instructor Guide personalized to the ODC
- ODCs are enrolled in an annual review mechanism with custom reports
- Allows for increased instructor presence
- Mitigates technical errors
- Improves student outcomes and engagement
ODC Development Expectations
- Minimum of two consultation meetings with the ODC development team
- Course will be submitted for QM evaluation by the end of its second development semester
- ODC content will be finalized within one academic year (three semesters)
- ODC content will be utilized by at least 50% of each semester’s fully-online sections
- Blueprinting is only available for ODCs with 100% utilization
Online Departmental Course Interest Form
If you are interested in creating an ODC, complete and submit the interest form below. The FIU Online Learning Design team will review your interest form. Approval for your participation will be sought from your department via your college’s instructional design manager.
If you need assistance evaluating learning material or would like to schedule a one-on-one consultation meeting, please feel free to contact:
- Maikel Alendy | Associate Director of Instructional Learning Technologies
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Ext: 305-348-0274
Am I allowed to change anything in an ODC course I am assigned to teach?
Traditionally ODCs maintain an 80-20 expectation. This means faculty are encouraged to maintain the integrity of course alignment by editing only 20% of the course content, i.e. test questions, discussion prompts, required readings, etc.
Ultimately, you should direct this question to the faculty lead/committee of the ODC for guidance. ODCs are designed with the intention of providing students with a more consistent, reliable, and high-quality learning experience while enabling faculty the room to focus on preventative feedback and personalized learning interventions.
What kind of instructional design support can I expect during the ODC process?
In the design and development phase of the project, you will receive hands-on support including one-on-one consultations with an instructional designer who specializes in the development of ODCs as well as: assistance with editing content in the course, creating custom resources for instructors teaching the course, and guiding you through making any updates.
By the time we reach the maintenance cycle, your course and instructor guides would have already been developed and the course would be Quality Matters Certified. All that’s left is to update course dates each semester and make any necessary minor changes.
You will have a maintenance team to provide you and your ODC instructors with guidance to help with making any necessary updates in your course along with completing course copies and providing DRC accommodations. Annually, you will also reconnect with an ODC instructional designer to review course analytics and make any revisions needed to the course.
What is the difference between an ODC and an Online QM course?
ODCs are an instructional tool meant for high-impact courses. In particular, ODCs should have high enrollment, multiple sections, or be taught predominantly by adjuncts and teaching assistants. ODCs also come with an instructor guide and an annual review mechanism.
What is the Blueprint process?Canvas blueprinting is a templating feature that automatically allows for copying course materials or locking them in multiple courses from a single parent course shell. This process allows learning material to populate in a course shell from the moment it is scheduled and can even push updates to all course shells containing locked course items. ODCs that require ODC content for all course sections taught with the same course number and name are eligible for ODC blueprinting.
Does my ODC have to be part of the Blueprint process?
No, that decision is up to your department.
Note: Only ODCs that require 100% of all online sections to use the ODC content are eligible for blueprinting.