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Professional Development

To support our faculty's professional development, we have meticulously designed the following sessions. Our team of Instructional designers and online course experts at the Center has crafted these sessions to address a wide range of pedagogical questions. Whether you are a seasoned online instructor or just starting your journey, these sessions are tailored to assist and empower both beginning and veteran faculty members.

Join us in exploring the cutting-edge approaches and strategies that will elevate your online teaching to new heights. We are committed to equipping you with the tools and knowledge to create engaging and impactful online learning experiences.

If there is a topic you wish to see that is not covered, please contact idhelp@online.msstate.edu to request a resource.

Upcoming Professional Development Sessions

January 9 – May 10

Self-Paced Courses

These 1-3 hours professional development courses are hosted asynchronously in Canvas. The course facilitators are available for support and additional training during normal MSU business hours.

To be added to a self-paced course, complete the registration form below. Registration is open throughout the duration of the course.

Courses can be completed concurrently and in any order:

Have you been curious to learn the ins and outs of Canvas, or are you just starting out and need to learn the basics?

This self-paced course is made for beginning to intermediate Canvas users. You will be guided through 5 modules in Canvas to learn everything from managing your notification settings to building modules, all the way to SpeedGrader and creating groups. Browse the course at your leisure or successfully complete the requirements to earn a Certificate of Completion.

Learn about how to apply accessibility standards when creating your course content and lecture videos. This self-paced course will introduce you to basic accessibility definitions and ADA accessibility requirements and will provide actionable steps toward creating an accessible online course. Examples and demonstrations will show participants how to meet minimum ADA accessibility requirements within their own courses.

Ensuring accessibility is an essential prerequisite for both online and in-person courses at Mississippi State University. This self-paced course serves as an extension of the initial Course Accessibility program, offering supplementary insights and resources for faculty members engaged with Mississippi State University students. The topics covered in this course include color contrast, Webex assistant, audio-video transcription, and crafting accessible documents. Through this course, participants gain comprehensive knowledge and tools to enhance accessibility in their courses and cater to the diverse needs of MSU students.

This self-paced course will guide you through the principles of gamification, specifically related to the online learning environment. In this course, you will learn the process to create gamified learning activities while also being introduced to a few gamification applications and tools. This course is intended to introduce learners to the elements of gamification along with the process to create fun, interactive, engaging, and most importantly effective learning experiences.

Every good course begins with good learning outcomes. Learning outcomes provide students and faculty with a shared goal and language to talk about the learning happening in a course and how students will use the acquired knowledge once the course is completed. This self-paced course provides a step-by-step guide to how to construct S.M.A.R.T. learning outcomes as well as guided practice so that your learning outcomes reflect the knowledge and skills you want your students to carry with them beyond the classroom.

This self-paced asynchronous course will introduce you to basic Canvas Studio concepts, while also preparing you for more advanced topics in future courses. Once you finish this course, you will be able to add or record a video in Canvas Studio, trim dead space from the beginning and end of a video, add and edit closed captioning, and integrate it into your course for your students.

Active learning is a student-centered approach intended to engage students through new information, ideas, experiences, and reflective dialogue. In this self-paced course, we will L.E.A.R.N how to implement active learning by Leveraging prior knowledge, Explaining new concepts, Activating using activities, Reflecting on learning, and Nurturing new strategies.

This self-paced course is designed to help you learn about the difference between gamification and game-based learning and then to assist you in determining what type of game-based learning could be integrated into your course planning and development. This course is an introduction to basic concepts and common effective elements of game-based learning. At the end of this course, successful participants will be able to define and identify the difference between game-based learning and gamification, select components that can be applied to their own courses, and create an action plan for a course that uses game-based learning.

This self-paced course is intended as an introduction to utilizing low-stakes assessments to increase student understanding of course content. Low-stakes assessments can be developed in a variety of formats through many different tools, be graded or non-graded, and be a safe space for students to actively engage with course content. While low-stakes assessments can be used on their own to target specific information, they can also be utilized as a scaffold for high-stakes assessments, providing more opportunities for knowledge integration for students and easier checkpoints for faculty. This course will introduce faculty to the concept of low-stakes assessments.



Spring 2024 Professional Development and Event Schedule


Date Time Title Location
February 7 10am Engaging Students in Your Online Course Webex
February 14 10am Essential Online Course Organization Webex
February 15 2pm Community of Practice Old Main, Room 2030
February 20 10am Assessments: Alternatives to Tests Webex
February 29 11:30am Instructional Design and Dine

Coskrey Auditorium, Memorial Hall


Date Time Title Location
March 6 10am Active Learning in Your Online Course Webex
March 19 10am Introduction to Universal Design for Learning (UDL) Webex
March 21 2pm Community of Practice Old Main, Room 2030


Date Time Title Location
April 9 10am Interactive Learning Tools Webex
April 25 9-11 AM; 2-4 PM Online Course and Tools Showcase TBD