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OTPP assumes no prior technical proficiency in the use of computers. There are three principal components of OTPP, similar to the elements that comprise a well designed online teaching system - (a) The Learning Management System (LMS), (b) The Conferencing Platform, and (c) The School Management System.

Even though there are scores of software offerings covering these capabilities, they all have commonalities which are explored in this practicum. The goal is not to review every single piece of software but to prepare teachers to use ANY piece of relevant software presented or adopted by their organization. The practicum uses open source software for the training. The focus is on hands-on group teacher training. Instructors use a paced modular learning approach to introduce key concepts to the cohort. Students are expected to use the platform to teach other students and be evaluated by peers. The goal is practice, practice, and more practice, so that students become comfortable and fluid in teaching online. The peer feedback mechanism provides a safe and supportive experience to teachers to learn together. The ultimate goal is for each student-teacher to hone and develop their individual online teaching persona and style. The course curriculum for OTPP is outlined below:

Module I: The Learning Management System (LMS)

  • Introduction to LMS
  • Outline of open-source and commercial LMS offerings.
  • Creating a course from scratch
  • Synchronous vs asynchronous tutorial systems
  • Translating and posting a course syllabus
  • Managing supporting resource material (including multimedia and online content)
  • Creating and managing assignments
  • Managing student interactions and classroom interactivity - student groups, forums, polls, blogs, wikis, chats, etc. 
  • Live instruction in online teaching
  • Student testing and evaluation
  • Managing and tracking attendance
  • Managing live-testing capabilities
  • Integrity and honesty in online classrooms
  • Managing grades and recording student performance
  • Information security and data protection
  • Managing the isolation that comes with online teaching

Module II: The Conferencing Platform

  • Introduction to videoconferencing platforms
  • Overview of open-source and commercial  offerings
  • Internet access, bandwidth, hardware and requisite infrastructure
  • Lighting, sound, noise, and intrusions: managing the physical environment
  • Access control and security in the classroom environment
  • Membership and privilege control in the classroom environment
  • Distribution lists and attendance control
  • Use of visuals, props, avatars and chromakey in creating a unique classroom persona
  • Sharing and use of resource materials in real-time
  • Tracking attendance and maintaining attentiveness
  • Controlling classroom behavior in an online environment
  • Dealing with equipment failure in online teaching environments
  • Document security: Sharing, distributing and controlling learning material
  • Data security: Protecting content generated in the classroom during and after the session
  • Legal jeopardy: Caution and care in online interactions
  • Data exchange between the conferencing platform and the learning management system
  • Administrative oversight of online classrooms

 Module III: The School Management System

  • Introduction to school management platforms
  • Overview of open-source and commercial offerings
  • Principal elements of a school management system
  • Access control and information security
  • Digital trails and access footprints
  • Privilege control and administrative hierarchies
  • Data privacy: Guardian/parental access controls
  • Creating student records
  • Reporting grades and student reports
  • Reporting performance, discipline and other student information
  • Medical records/event reporting
  • Distribution lists and data dissemination
  • Creating customized reports
  • Document security: Creating and storing archival material
  • Data security: Protecting content generated in the school management system
  • Legal jeopardy: Caution and care in creating permanent records
  • Data exchange between the school management system and the learning management system
  • Administrative oversight and legal liability
  • Legal obligations and ethical requirements in an online learning environment


Students that do not have the requisite computer skills to participate effectively in OTPP may register for CGS 1104, described as follows:

[CGS1104 - Computer Immersion

The aim of this course is to provide students with the basic computer skills needed in the workplace. In this course, students will learn how to use computer software such as Microsoft Office. In addition, this course will teach students how to utilize digital devices as educational tools. Students will be expected to have digital devices containing multimedia tools that would assist them in their studies.]