Remote teaching

Next Steps for McKelvey Teaching in Spring 2021

As indicated by Chancellor Martin’s message, Washington University in St. Louis will shift to remote instruction for the first two weeks of the Spring 2021 Semester. Loosely adhering to the adage that “[a] good start is half the battle,” the McKelvey Instructional Design Team encourages instructors to be intentional with the construction of their Canvas sites and with the digital welcoming of students to class. Here are some mission critical steps that we recommend taking:

Mission Critical

1. Review your course(s) on Canvas. Are they up to date? If not, here’s what to do next:

2. Schedule your Zoom class sessions

  • Schedule Zoom course meetings in Canvas
  • Schedule some remote office hours times for your students

3. Communicate with your students

4. Connect with the McKelvey Instructional Team

Canvas Considerations

When deciding how to prioritize your time, consider the following Canvas course elements:

  1. Post your syllabus in Canvas
  2. Post your grades in Canvas
  3. Communicate via Course Announcements
  4. List topics, contents, and assignments by week
  5. Post course materials on Pages under Modules
  6. Add assignment due dates so that they appear in the Canvas Syllabus Area


If you have the bandwidth, now might be a great time to add some extra flair to your course. This could include:

  1. Developing a welcoming landing page
  2. Posting a Welcome video to the course
  3. Posting a Personal Introduction video

Additional Resources

Need more support? Set up a 60-minute consultation with Jason Crandall or Meghann Pytka. We are happy to help.

Consult the McKelvey Teaching Blog.

Review the McKelvey Teaching Technology Resource Guides

Reach out to the Center for Teaching and Learning.

Final Thoughts

This return to remote instruction is challenging, but McKelvey has successfully navigated these before, and we will again.

Works Consulted

[1] Citation: Hoefler, Daniel. “Recommended Next Steps for Remote Instruction: Winter 2022.” The CanvasPost. Northwestern University, December 20, 2021.