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Modes of Instruction


  • Online education, instruction, or learning that occurs at the same time, but not in the same place. 
  • Asynchronous learning allows students to view and submit materials on their own time. 


  • Online education, instruction, or learning that occur at the same time, but not necessarily in the same place. 
  • Synchronous online learning requires students to log in and participate in class at a designated time each week. 


  • Hybrid learning, also known as Blended Learning, is a combination of in-person instruction and online activities.
  • Online activities help reinforce concepts and topics discussed during in-person instruction. 

Flex (HyFlex) 

  • Flex learning gives students the choice of face-to-face, online, or blended classrooms.
  • They can switch between formats as needed. 


  • In-person learning is the traditional classroom format of solely being in the classroom for instruction and learning activities. 

Commonly Used Terms in OLS


Content is the information shared with learners such as the topics of lectures or the curriculum itself. 


Files are documents or materials that are uploaded to a platform or website. Word processing documents, PDFs, slideshows, or excels are classified as examples of files. 


Accessibility is making course content digestible or easy to use for all learning abilities. This includes designing courses and developing teaching best practices that meet the needs of individuals who may have disabilities.  

Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act 

Section 508 is a federal law that requires agencies to provide individuals with disabilities equal access to electronic information and data comparable to those who do not have disabilities. This includes individuals that receive federal funding, such as students. 

IT Accessibility Laws and Policies – Section 508Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act: Application and Scoping Requirements 508 | OLS Accessibility Toolkit  

Digital Content 

Digital content is the information or digital data contained within communication media. In the context of the College’s Learning Management System (Canvas), some content examples include assignments, discussion forums, videos, pages, etc. 

WGA3 Accessibility Standards

Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) explain how to make web content more accessible to people with disabilities. WCAG covers websites, applications, and other digital content. It is developed by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI). WCAG is an international standard.


An accommodation is an arrangement with a learner where requested modifications are made on an as-needed basis based on a learner’s disability. Providing extended time for tests is an example of accommodation that can be made for students. 


The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) (20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99) is a Federal law that protects the privacy of student education records. The law applies to all schools that receive funds under an applicable program of the U.S. Department of Education.

FERPA gives parents certain rights with respect to their children’s education records. These rights transfer to the student when he or she reaches the age of 18 or attends a school beyond the high school level. Students to whom the rights have transferred are “eligible students.”

Personal Identifiable Information (PII) 

Personal Identifiable Information refers to the student’s name, address, name of the student’s parent or other family members, address of the student or student’s family, a personal identifier, such as a social security number or student number, and a list of personal characteristics 


Pedagogy is teaching children essential milestones that a child must learn before moving on to the next milestone. 


Andragogy is teaching adults through examples of self-facilitation or life experience. There are four principles of andragogy to keep in mind. 

  1. Adults need to know why they need to learn something. 
  2. Adults need to learn through experience. 
  3. Adults need to approach learning as problem-solving. 
  4. Adults learn best when the topic is of immediate value or impacts them. 

Learning Management System 

A learning management system or LMS is a software application or web-based technology used for educational course delivery, reporting, administration, and more. Canvas, Blackboard, and Moodle are examples of LMS platforms. The College of Saint Rose uses Canvas as its LMS. 


Remediation is the act of improving or modifying content to ensure that it is accessible for all learners. This includes but is not limited to editing course documents and content to meet the accessibility standards necessary for learners with disabilities. 


A sandbox is an empty course shell in Canvas without any students that only the instructor has access to. It allows the instructor to build a course before importing the materials into their actual course shell. Many faculty use these to import previous course content that they no longer have access to and want to revise. Sandboxes can be made available to faculty before their actual course shell is available so they can develop their course ahead of time. Additionally, the course shells are set for the Default Term in Canvas so they are available at any time. 


LTI stands for Learning Tools Interoperability. The LTI is a third-party learning application that connects to an LMS. Some examples include VoiceThread, Chalk & Wire, Cengage Learning, Turnitin, and Pearson MyLab. Instead of needing students to log into a separate website to access their assignments or information, everything is built into the LMS. 


Integration is the act of placing an outside tool into a system that everyone uses without needing to access an external site. Video conferencing tools like Zoom that are integrated into the LMS are an example of integration because the user does not need to access an outside site. 

External Tool 

An external tool is a third-party learning application that connects to an LMS or can be accessed outside of the LMS. Some examples include VoiceThread, Chalk & Wire, Cengage Learning, Turnitin, and Pearson MyLab. 

Course Review 

 A course review is a process that involves an instructional designer and a faculty member. The instructional designer will evaluate the design of an online course based on standardized criteria for online courses. The review consists of the rubric evaluation, an objective assessment and narrative of the course design, and a follow-up consultation. 

Course Refresh 

A course refresh occurs after a course review in most cases. This process takes into account new research or updated content in an instructor’s area of expertise, and/or information gleaned from a course review, and then updates or improvements of certain aspects of an online course are implemented. This is typically done in tandem with the instructional designer who reviewed the course.  


Blueprint is a template course shell that provides a framework for instructors to use based on best practices. This framework is provided by the Online Learning Services team as a resource for instructors and has accessibility needs in mind. 


Captions are the text version of the spoken part of a video or presentation and are visible on the screen at the same time. Captions are important not only for those who are deaf or hard-of-hearing but can help with comprehension for new language learners. Additionally, captions can assist with poor audio quality or when a user is accessing the media in a noisy environment. 


A transcript is a written version of material originally presented in another medium. For example, Zoom provides transcripts of what was said during a meeting. Kaltura also provides a transcript of the captions generated. Transcripts are helpful for many of the same reasons that captions are useful while viewing a video or presentation. Additionally, students may also want to have a printed copy of the transcript to mark up and use for studying purposes. 

Definition of Services and Titles

Online Learning Services 

Online Learning Services provides the Saint Rose academic community with collaborative leadership and support for the design and delivery of digital instruction by encouraging new and flexible instructional approaches, removing barriers for learners, and providing tools and processes that are both efficient and high-quality. 

Support we Provide 

  • Online Program Development 
  • Instructional & Course Design Services 
  • Online Learning Software Training & Support 
  • Training and Consultation in Accessible Materials 
  • Individual Consultation 

Information Technology Services (ITS) 

The College of Saint Rose ITS department provides access to state-of-the-art computers, software, multimedia systems in classrooms and for events, campus information systems and services including Banner, e-mail, streaming media, phones, voice mail, and much more. We provide training classes and workshops throughout the year on software, copyright, and many more topics. 

Director of Online Learning Services 

The Director of Online Learning Services inspires, encourages, and supports the use of emerging and current eLearning technologies by assisting faculty and other constituents in implementing instructional tools that meet their pedagogical or other goals. This includes system administration and training, user support, instructional design and best practice guidance based on research. The Director also manages the Online Learning Services office operations, staff, and projects. 

Contact the Director of OLS if…

  • You need clarification of processes or policies in Online Learning Services.
  • You have questions or concerns about online teaching and learning at Saint Rose.
  • You would like to develop a fully online or flex program.
  • You are thinking about moving one of your face-to-face courses online and need some information on the procedure.

Instructional Designer 

The Instructional Designer inspires faculty and other constituents to employ innovative and engaging course design and delivery techniques that will improve learning outcomes and student experiences. This includes collaborative design, development, and revision of online, hybrid, and web-supplemented courses that serve the 21st-century learner while maintaining a strong commitment to the Saint Rose Mission. The Instructional Designer provides pedagogical training and support for faculty and provides a guiding vision for achieving quality excellence. 

Contact our Instructional Designer if

  • You’d like a course review.
  • You are developing a new online or flex course.
  • You are interested in updating a current online or flex course.
  • You would like to explore student engagement techniques or pedagogical best practices for teaching online or flex courses.

Instructional Support Specialist 

The Instructional Support Specialist works as a part of the Online Services team and provides end-users of instructional technologies with excellent customer service, direct issue resolution, and technical training. With careful attention to detail and accuracy, the Specialist coordinates and deploys routine technical processes and workflows using established policies and systems (e.g., student course evaluations, course copy/rollover processes, backups, license renewals). 

Contact our Instructional Support Specialist if… 

  • You need an account upgraded or renewed, specifically Zoom and Portfolio. 
  • You are having trouble accessing your Canvas account and the appropriate steps have been completed with your school, Human Resources, Registrar, and ITS. 
  • You need guidance on how to use tool functionality for Canvas, Portfolio, Zoom, Kaltura, Turnitin, SmartEvals, or others listed in the Platform Descriptions section. 
  • You need courses merged and the request form is not functioning properly. 
  • You need course access extended for students doing an incomplete and the request form is not functioning properly. 
  • You need your course renamed after completing the cross-listing/merging request form.