The anxieties over quality, on the other hand, have necessitated the need to design online courses that meet the set minimum standards of quality and industry demands. It is on this basis that faculty-designers have emerged as critical a component in the development of online courses. Given the importance of faculty-designers, there is a need to ensure that these faculty-developers possess requisite skills and competencies that are crucial in maintaining the quality of online courses. This chapter presents the issues surrounding the skills, competencies and best practices for designing online courses. In addition to these issues, this chapter will also present the purpose of the research, research questions and hypotheses, justification and significance of the research, as well as limitations and assumptions for the research.
Faculty designers try to employ the principles of instructional design that uses those tenets to design course materials. However, they are often made responsible for the creation, development, and management of online classes without any formal preparation for performing these tasks (Carliner and Driscoll, 2009). This can result in a practice where faculty-designers tend to create certain courses without possessing the basic instructional development skills and competencies in these areas. This problem is compounded since the professional and scholarly community has not yet identified the basic instructional design skills and competencies that the faculty-designers should possess before they are assigned the task of designing various courses. Such competencies and skills for faculty-designers developing online courses are embedded in instructional design theories related to the content expertise as well as their understanding of the concepts of education and instructional design (Reigeluth, 2012). These ideas are also associated with the conceptualization of how learning theories support adult learning. The rapid growth of online ...Show more