Teaching online is different from teaching in the classroom. This brief guide will help you start using SF State’s online teaching and learning tools to provide a meaningful learning experience for your students. This guide covers four important areas: communicating with students, sharing class content, engaging students online, and assessing learning.
Table of Contents
- How to get help
- Getting started
- Share class content
- Engage your students
How to get help
The iLearn Support Services is open Monday through Friday from 8:00AM to 5:00PM. There are five ways to contact the help desk:
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Phone: (415) 405–5555
- Chat: click the chat link in the iLearn help block inside of an iLearn class
- SMS: text message to (510)5-ILEARN
- Drop in: LIB 220
Look for Look for the Quick tips boxes for links to how-to guides for the items listed.
Before students can access your iLearn class, you need to make it available to them.
Clear and consistent communication is key to student success and satisfaction. Regular communication reassures students of your presence and keeps them on track. More importantly, it demonstrates your interest in their success.
Contact your students
Let your students know that you will be using iLearn for your class. Direct them to https://ilearn.sfsu.edu/ to find your class.
iLearn provides multiple ways to contact your students; the easiest is the Quickmail block. To email your whole class, simply log in to iLearn and click on the Compose New Email link on your class iLearn page.
News & Announcements forum
The News & Announcements forum is a bulletin board for faculty to post class announcements. Students can review your News forum announcements any time they log in to your iLearn class. A copy of your message is emailed to your students as a digest at 3:00AM.
Students contacting you
Establish a clear protocol for students to contact you. To do this, include a “contact statement” in your syllabus with details about how you prefer to be contacted, keep your iLearn profile current (office number, photo, etc.), and add your contact information at the top of your iLearn class. Include the following information:
- Instructor name
- Department name
- Office location
- Office hours
SF State email
Make sure that your official SF State email is set up, and that you check it regularly, since this is the primary way your students will try to contact you.
SF State phone number
Faculty campus phone numbers are listed in the campus directory. If you have a campus extension make sure you set up your voicemail. If you do not use your campus phone regularly, record an outgoing message to let students know how to contact you.
Sharing class content
Share resources with links to files and websites on your iLearn class page. With editing turned on in your class, simply drag files from your computer and drop them directly onto your iLearn class page.
There are two main ways to present lectures online: video conferencing and CourseStream.
Video conferencing allows you to meet your students online using video, voice, chat, PowerPoint, and screen sharing. You can record these lectures so students can view them later, on their own time.
CourseStream allows you to record your lectures for your class. To use CourseStream from a classroom, contact iLearn Support Services to reserve a CourseStream equipped room. To use CourseStream personal capture from your computer, click on the CourseStream link in the administration block of your course, then on Connect your course to get started.
Engage your students
iLearn provides multiple ways to engage your students online.
One of the best ways to foster student engagement is to use the iLearn discussion forums.
Assess student work
Use iLearn assignments to collect student work, provide feedback, and assign grades.
- Add an assignment to your class
- Grade assignments in iLearn
Plagiarism checking with Turnitin
Turnitin is an online teaching tool that flags instances of possible plagiarism, over-reliance on cited resources, and improper citation for text-based files submitted by students online. It also provides the ability to quickly mark the papers with comments and assign grades online, elimiated the need to download students' submissions to your computer.
- Add a Turnitin assignment
- Edit Turnitin due dates
- Grade a Turnitin assignment
- View a student's Turnitin originality report
Set up forums to facilitate peer review work. When creating a forum, allow attachments so students can upload files for peer review.
iLearn quizzes allow for many different types of questions including multiple choice, matching, true/false, short answer and essay. Quiz scores are automatically added to the gradebook, saving you time.
- iLearn quiz overview
Learn has a built in gradebook to keep track of student progress and provide them with feedback.
Make sure your items are visible to students. If the links in your class page are gray, students are unable to see them. To make them visible, Turn editing on, locate the item and click Edit and select Show next to the item. You can also see if the section is hidden by looking for an icon of an eyeball with a slash through it.