Engstrom Earns Advanced Online Teaching Certification | Communication Studies | SIU

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Engstrom Earns Advanced Online Teaching Certification

Craig EngstromDr. Craig Engstrom recently completed an advanced online teaching course. His efforts were geared toward developing and improving online courses. His completion of the certificate means that the CMST 101 course follows teaching best practices outlined by the Online Learning Consortium. Our department provides many opportunities to graduate students to learn and prepare to teach online upon completion of their degree.

Over the summer of 2019, Dr. Craig Engstrom, Director of the Communication Studies undergraduate program, completed the Advanced Online Teaching Certificate, sponsored by the Online Learning Consortium.

This means that we can now say that CMST 101 meets the highest standards of online teaching and instruction by following the best practices of the Online Leaning Consortium, outlined in the OpenSUNY Course Quality Review (OSCQR) for accessibility and the Quality Course Teaching and Instructional Practice (QCTIP) scorecards. The CMST 101 online course was reviewed by expert instructors and received high marks along all dimensions of these assessment tools. As described on their website, “The aim of the Open SUNY Course Quality Review (OSCQR) Rubric and Process is to support continuous improvements to the quality and accessibility of online courses, while also providing an approach to collect data that can be used to inform faculty development and support large-scale online course design review and refresh efforts systematically and consistently.”

It is common knowledge that colleges and universities have been increasing their online presence and course offerings, in an effort to widen the availability of higher education, reach students who might not otherwise be able to come to a brick and mortar campus, and take advantage of the wealth of resources that online technology has to offer. However, teaching online is much more complex than simply posting documents from a face-to-face course. The intricacies and opportunities available in an online environment necessitate an investment of time and resources in order to provide the best learning experience possible.

Dr. Engstrom sought out the opportunity to engage in this Advanced Online Teaching Certificate in order to do just that—to develop online courses in Communication Studies that meet best practices and enhance students’ education. While our department had, in the past, engaged in distance education, Dr. Engstrom has taken that to a new level, developing online sections of CMST 101 (allowing SIU students to complete their University Core Curriculum courses online), CMST 280: Business and Professional Communication, and during the Summer of 2020, CMST 480: Case Studies in Organizational Communication. In addition, this gives graduate students in our department the opportunity to teach online, which adds to their profile of experience once they enter the academic job market.

The department appreciates Dr. Engstrom’s initiative and commitment in completing this Advanced Online Teaching Certificate. Congratulations, Craig!