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Whether you’re prepping a new course or refreshing an old one, planning is an essential component to the success of your courses.  Here are 10 tips to keep in mind as you develop your course, as well as some great resources.

10 Tips on Developing Your Course:

1. Start with the end in mind.

Instead of focusing on your content, start by establishing your learning objectives.  Once you know what you want students to know and do, you can establish on how you will assess their level of achievement.  Finally, you can select your instructional strategies and learning activities that will help you achieve these goals.

2. Make it a learning syllabus.

One of the most important elements of your course is the syllabus. Click here for resources to help.

3. Don’t try to do too much.

Trying new technologies and teaching methods is great, but taking on too much can overload you. Reach out to colleagues, mentors, and/or TLDT to find ways to save time in the classroom without sacrificing quality learning

4. Don’t pack it in.

Trying to cover too much content can stress you out and hurt student learning.  Focus on what’s really important.

5. Keep time in mind.

Create assignments and rubrics that can help you assess students learning quickly and easily.

6. Think about how you use course materials.

Many faculty choose a textbook and go through it chapter by chapter to organize a course.  Think about what role textbooks, articles, websites, videos and other materials play in learning, and explain how you want students to use them in your class.

7. Get organized.

Put your class dates in your calendar with a description of what you are doing and what’s due. Put all of your course materials into an easy to find folder. Upload content to Canvas and before going live, review the course with student preview.

8. Rediscover your passion.

Each semester is a chance to show students why this content matters and why you fell in love with your discipline.  Bring that energy into your class each day.

9. Don’t be afraid to change it up.

If you are new to a class, you may have inherited someone else’s syllabus and course materials. Don’t be afraid to make changes based on the data Canvas provides and any feedback you attain through an anonymous survey with questions about teaching methods, assignments, course materials and assessment techniques. Use these items to help you gauge whether the course content is working or if it might be time to refresh some of it for better results.

10. Don’t try to do it alone.

Schedule a consultation with us here, check with your colleagues, or visit these online media outlets for content, resources, activities, assignments, etc.


The UTSA library staff has also conveniently curated the following faculty services resources to help.

Related UTSA Policies & Resources: