Meeting the Challenges Ahead

When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, I took on the responsibility of developing the institutional vision for online education at India’s #1 private university, O.P. Jindal Global University.

Like most universities, we were surprised by the sudden shock, and at the time, our university had no formal online education offerings. Our faculty had limited, or no, experience teaching online, and we lacked the technology infrastructure or in-house production facilities to develop high-quality online courses.

Personally, while I had experience developing several online MOOCs, leading this initiative required me to learn a whole new set of skills and competencies on the fly.

It became clear that to develop a portfolio of high-quality online education offerings, we all urgently needed to upskill and embrace significant change.

The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted workplaces worldwide, forcing a change in how we work, communicate with each other, and learn on the job. That need for rapid change has been uniquely acute for universities rapidly shifting to remote teaching and working.

While universities’ have mostly achieved operational continuity, the recent changes have created new challenges and demands on faculty and staff. 

For example, many universities face the challenge of keeping students engaged in a digital environment, while others face difficulty maintaining administrative staff productively in remote work environments.

With most university faculty and staff now working from home, many have been uncertain about the future, anxiety has risen, and days have become longer.

Meanwhile, the demand for universities to maintain high quality has never been higher. New modes of online learning need quality assurance; technology delivery needs quality improvements to achieve academic excellence.

How can faculty and staff meet these challenges without adding to further anxiety? 

Professional development seems critical here. But while the internet is full of new forms of online personal and professional development learning opportunities, how to know which one to choose? The options readily available are often not tailored to the higher education context or appropriately priced for your faculty or staff.  Further, faculty and staff members often feel they do not have the “extra” time available for personal or professional skill development.

It highlights the need for professional development courses to be relevant and developed by seasoned professionals with the right expertise.

Professional development that is well-designed, self-guided, short, and available online is the need of the hour. With more faculty and staff getting the skills and competencies they need to address these new challenges, the silver lining is that universities may find themselves better prepared for digital transformation and hopefully less anxious for the future.

Related Articles

Responses

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  1. I am extremely impressed with your writing skills as well as
    with the layout on your blog. Is this a paid theme or did you modify it yourself?
    Anyway keep up the nice quality writing, it is rare to see a nice blog like this one today.

  2. That’s right “It became clear that to develop a portfolio of high-quality online education offerings, we all urgently needed to upskill and embrace significant change”.

Select your currency
EUR Euro
IDRIndonesian rupiah
PEN Sol

Qaspir Foundation Research Survey for Faculty Preparedness to Facilitate Soft Skills©

A 17 question survey.

Please move through questions 1-16 quickly and mark your initial feeling about how you would rate yourself. A final question allows for free form response.

Your Details

‘First Generation’ - A formal definition of a first-generation college student is a student whose parent(s) did not complete a four-year college or university degree and who therefore has no immediate family role model for being a college student.
If each of the following were added as an outcome you were supposed to help your students achieve in each of the classes you teach, how well prepared do you feel you are right now to help students reach the indicated outcome?
© 2024 Qaspir