Teach from Home

Please visit the new resource for teaching online

The resources on this page were presented for spring 2020.

For updated and expanded strategies, please visit our Teaching Online web pages.

About course continuity at the University of Delaware

This is one component of the University of Delaware’s coronavirus response and a companion page for Students Learning Remotely and Staff Working Remotely.

This site provides resources for faculty to adapt their courses so that lectures, demonstrations, discussions, exams and other course work can be done online. The University provides strategies and tools for online course delivery.  Lab sessions, performances, clinical services, fieldwork and other academic work that cannot be done online may have to be minimized or altered. Faculty should consider how they will incorporate other kinds of work into their courses while continuing to deliver an excellent and academically rigorous experience. For courses that involve off-campus learning experiences, faculty should stay informed regarding any coronavirus guidance from host institutions.

Support for these options is available through the virtual welcome bar.

Faculty Senate President Matt Robinson invites those working on course continuity at the University of Delaware to join an online community. View video invitation and registration form.

Tools for remote teaching

Interested in Zoom, Canvas, or UD Capture?


All workshop sessions have been recorded.


Click here for quick start guides and descriptions of recorded workshops.

Primary tools How to get started
Canvas is the University of Delaware’s learning management system. Canvas can be used for a number of tasks, such as announcements, assignments, discussions, content delivery, media management, collaborations, and more.

To create a Canvas course, visit the Canvas home page and choose the Course Creation menu option.

Refer to the faculty quick start guide (PDF) and set your Canvas Notifications.

Some links below reference specific Canvas pages within the Canvas Faculty Center (UD login required).

Zoom is UD’s desktop and mobile video conferencing platform, including video recording and screen sharing.  Zoom is adaptable from individual online office hours through full class sessions. Zoom is available for Mac, Windows, iPhone, and Android. Activate your Zoom@UD account
Select “Sign In” and enter your UD credentials and 2-factor code.


View the Zoom Getting Started Guide (PDF).


Communicate with your students: Use Canvas as a central meeting point


  • Let students know your selected mode of communication (e.g., Canvas Announcements).
  • Indicate how you want students to communicate with you (e.g., Canvas Inbox).

Update your syllabus online in advance of a disruptive event to include:

  • your course continuity policy and expectations
  • contingencies for student absence
  • student responsibilities for communication, participation
  • other options you may make available (e.g. class recordings)
  • alternate methods you may use (e.g., online office hours)
  • refer students to UD’s coronavirus page for campus communication

As an initial step, provide a procedure for students to inform you if they will be unable to attend class in person.  Canvas Announcements are useful for communicating this, along with a Canvas poll to collect responses (create a Canvas Quiz using the option for “ungraded survey”).

Communicating with your students during a continuity situation is a comprehensive guide that addresses initial communication, compassion and flexibility, academic integrity, and expectations for online workload.

“Designing effective online discussions” and “Minimize volume of student emails by using discussion forums” are two Faculty Commons articles to help get started with Canvas Discussions.

Steps you can take now to get familiar with communicating in Canvas

Use Canvas Syllabus or post your syllabus as a file.

Post a Canvas Announcement.

Try Canvas Conversations (Inbox).

Create a Canvas Discussion and subscribe to receive updates via email.


Share course content: Make a recorded lecture


Best Practices: Make good use of your own videos (1-page PDF) is a UD resource with recommendations and examples for the use of video.

Review the three recordings options listed below to identify your preferred approach.

Consider reusing one of your existing UD Capture recordings. Browse your video library in the Canvas My Media tool. You can download videos from My Media.  You can edit videos (trim heads and tails).  Then, publish your selected recording to the Media Gallery in your Canvas course.

After posting a recording, review and correct caption files for online recordings for accessibility.

Option 1

Use Zoom

You may already use Zoom to attend virtual meetings with colleagues or maybe even deliver a synchronous classroom experience. You can also record using Zoom and capture your screen, webcam, and voice with a single application. This process is detailed in our Using Zoom to Record Lectures tutorial video.

Zoom Whiteboard enables you to demonstrate worked problems.  Optionally, use a tablet device (e.g, Microsoft Surface, iPad with Pencil).

Option 2

Use UD Capture Personal Capture

This application allows you to simultaneously record your screen, webcam, and voice. The best part is the screen and webcam are presented as two independent video streams that your viewer can switch back and forth and arrange on playback. This process is detailed in our UD Capture Personal Capture (Screen Recording) page.

Option 3

Use PowerPoint

If you use PowerPoint exclusively to deliver content, you can also record a narration along with each slide and share this with your students. This process is detailed in our Upload Narrated PowerPoint to My Media in Canvas page..
Share course content: Handouts, readings, and other files


Prepare to distribute your course materials online.  Replace paper handouts with digitized copies for sharing with students.

Ensure all the files you need for the course are accessible remotely.

Link your library research guide to your Canvas course or ask your subject specialist librarian to create one for you focusing on materials available at a distance.  More info is available on the University Library continuity page, including spotlights for copyright questions and film and video info.

Steps you can take now to have all your course materials available remotely

Use Canvas Files to share selected content with your students.

Use a mobile device camera to digitize paper documents to share with students and make your paper document accessible through Adobe PDF.

Embed a Library Research Guide into your course for fast access to online tools.


Enable remote participation in your classroom session or office hours


It is recommended that you schedule synchronous learning activities during normally scheduled class times. This will help reduce scheduling conflicts among online activities and optimize student participation.

Ensure your student are ready to participate online: Share the Student Guide for Zoom at UD (2-page PDF).

Make it easy for students to find your Zoom meeting: Three methods to link your Zoom meetings in Canvas.

Steps you can take now to get familiar with Zoom

Send a Zoom meeting invitation, e.g. for office hours or a review session.

Enable Zoom waiting room to simulate office hours by admitting one student at a time.

Hold a practice Zoom meeting; test webcam, microphone, and screen sharing.

Try Zoom polling for engagement.

There are 3 ways to choose from to add a Zoom link to your Canvas course.


Assess your students


Learning assessments for large courses conducted online contains detailed information about:

  • Assessment planning within Canvas
  • Alternative major assessments that work well in online environments
  • Online testing platform (proctored testing)

Steps you can take now to get familiar with assessing your students remotely

The Basics – What is a Canvas Assignment?
Collect student work using Canvas Assignments.  This tool can also allow for grading of assignments not collected in CanvasUse Canvas to make a Canvas Quiz or Canvas Poll (Ungraded Survey)
Quizzes in Canvas can be used to challenge student understanding and assess comprehension of course material. The quiz tool is used to create and administer online quizzes and surveys. Quizzes can also be used to conduct and moderate exams and assessments, both graded and ungraded.Canvas Quiz Settings to Maximize Security

Contact the UD Testing Center for on-campus and remote testing options, including ProctorU.

Replacing classroom clickers with online options is a UD resources with online alternatives to clickers.

Other class activities

Student team work

Try Zoom breakout rooms during a synchronous online class session.

Students can login to Zoom@UD for their own for team work outside of synchronous online class sessions.

Create Canvas Groups for student group workspace inside Canvas.

Consider the use of GSuite (Google Docs, Sheets, Slides, Forms) for group work and brainstorming tasks.

Student lab work

Advice for transitioning labs: three possible scenarios based on common lab goals

Consider if parts of the lab experience can happen online through video demonstrations, virtual simulations, or student analysis of raw laboratory data.

Consider if some lab sessions can be rescheduled after the disruption.

Explore if specialized software can be accessed remotely.

Student presentations

Students can use their Zoom account to hold a practice Zoom meeting and test their webcam, microphone, and screen sharing in preparation for using Zoom to present in your class.

Student accommodations

Instructors may be asked to provide reasonable academic accommodations for a student who has a documented disability on file with Disability Support Services (DSS). This is likely to include assisting with accommodations in Canvas.

DSS answers some of the most common questions.


General considerations for technology preparedness

Test and update your technology and get connected

  1. Install or update antivirus software on your devices.
  2. Update your web browser to the latest version. 
  3. Have a second (or third) web browser installed as a backup,  such as Firefox, Chrome.
  4. Test your secure access (UD VPN software), which is required to access certain UD online resources.
  5. Verify that all necessary software, including your selections from UDeploy, are available remotely.
  6. Turn on automatic software updates on your devices: MacOS, Windows, iOS, Android.
  7. Email hacking. Hackers are taking advantage of public anxiety about COVID-19 by sending fake messages that appear to be from the World Health Organization and other authorities regarding work-from-home guidance, local outbreaks, or charitable solicitations.
    • Beware of phishing and other scams that will take advantage of panic, etc.
    • Do not click on links or open attachments from emails that look suspicious.
    • Forward suspicious emails to reportaphish@udel.edu.
    • Learn more at www.udel.edu/security
  8. Turn off smart speakers (Amazon Echo, Google Home, Apple HomePod, etc.) Studies have shown that although smart speakers are only supposed to start recording when they hear a key phrase, they are always listening to detect those phrases (which means they’ll pick up any conversations or sounds in range). To ensure that any Zoom calls and other verbal conversations stay private, unplug your non-essential, home-use smart speaker or remove that speaker from the room.

Get connected

Having access to a reliable internet connection is crucial for many employees’ job functions. Below is a list of some options for gaining access, or improving existing access, to the internet.

Through you or your department’s carrier

  • For remote wireless internet access options, you can reach out to your personal cellular carrier (Verizon Wireless, AT&T, etc.).
  • Those departments that already have a cellular account established, should also have a point of contact designated. That point of contact should be able to assist you in ordering a MiFi, if needed.
  • UD staff and faculty using University-owned devices are eligible for the FirstNet Plan with Unlimited Talk & Text/Unlimited Data/Unlimited hotspot.

o   Cost: $45 (not including fees and taxes)

o   Please note the converting to a new phone plan may temporarily disconnect your service and require rebooting your device.

o   AT&T ordering contact: Alyssa Knaub (AS6893@att.com)

Verizon Wireless
  • UD staff and faculty using University-owned devices may sign up for the Verizon Public Safety Plan with Unlimited Data.

o   Cost: $50 for unlimited talk/text/data with hotspot (not including fees and taxes)

o   Verizon ordering contact: Matt Wilchinski (matthew.wilchinski@verizonwireless.com)

Additional paid options

  • Unsure of what broadband providers are available in your area? This map can help you find out.
  • Those who live in Kent and Sussex county may be able to use Bloosurf.

Free/discounted options


For more info and assistance

This page is brought to you by Faculty Commons partners, including Center for Teaching and Assessment of Learning (CTAL), Information Technologies (UDIT), Professional and Continuing Studies (PCS), and University Library, Museums, and Press. Faculty who would like additional assistance using these techniques to accomplish their course objectives are encouraged to contact Faculty Commons.

If your course doesn’t translate easily into an online format, CTAL is prepared to help!  Find out more at CTAL’s course continuity page.


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