Instructor Toolkit - Recommended Best Practices

All Modes Ready Resources

We will be “All Modes Ready” to deliver a distinctly Arcadia education, be that in person, blended (in person and online), or fully online. Our decisions will be guided by campus public health experts, local and state health and safety recommendations, our lived values, and our commitment to equity. No student will be required to take courses in person; we will respect the wishes of community members to meet their health and safety needs. In order to be ready for All Modes instruction, students will need a web-cam enabled laptop or tablet.  Any students for whom this may be a challenge should contact us at

For more information on All-Modes Ready please see the Faculty Instruction for All-Modes page.

Syllabus and Course Policies

  • Include a statement about COVID-19 on your syllabus stating your plan to address possible student absences, the possibility of your absence, alternative assignments, grading, etc.
  • Exercise flexibility and make reasonable accommodations for students who miss class, miss an exam, or are unable to submit coursework.
    • If a student cannot attend when classes are held, it is their responsibility to notify instructors in a timely manner and discuss reasonable ways to make up any missed class content.

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Course Structure and Materials

  • Communicate with students fully and completely. Use Arcadia email or Canvas communication tools, such as Announcements and Inbox.
  • Share content and facilitate digital activities in Canvas, even if you don’t usually use Canvas.
  • Ensure your course content remains accessible to students with disabilities if you change course/material formats. Contact the Disability Support Services to learn more.
  • DIY All Modes Course Development Toolkit

DIY All Modes Course Design Toolkit and Checklist


If course exams cannot be held in person, there are a number of alternatives to consider. Several of these strategies can also help to promote academic integrity in the absence of proctored exams. Consider also reminding students of their responsibilities for academic integrity. Canvas offers many different exam types that can be self graded or instructor graded.  

  • Use Canvas to distribute and collect exams via Canvas Assignments. Optionally, use date restrictions to set time limits. Consider whether the exam should be an open book exam or not.
  • Use Arcadia gmail to distribute and collect exams. Consider whether the exam should be an open book exam or not. 
  • Use Canvas to create and administer an exam. Canvas exams (called “Quizzes” in Canvas) provide functionality for enhancing academic integrity through features like randomized questions and exam time limits. If you are new to using Canvas quizzes, please contact Digital Learning Services prior to administering the quiz to your students.
  • Consider remote proctoring options for your exams. Use the Respondus tool set to LockDown a student's browser, Monitor students through their webcam and receive a report, and Instructor Live Proctoring through Zoom.

Final Papers, and Presentations

  • If needed, collect papers or other final projects via the Canvas Assignment tool or via email.
  • If needed, move in-person presentations to digital formats:
    • Ask students to submit recorded presentations. Students can create Panopto recordings and the links to their recordings will appear in a new folder [Assignments] within the Panopto Recordings page. You can also create an Assignment or Discussion in Canvas to collect links to their recordings or ask them to email you.
    • Create a Zoom session for students to give their presentations virtually. Schedule the Zoom session for the same time as class would usually meet.

Alternative Assessment Options

  • Optional methods to assess students’ achievement of stated course learning outcomes, such as:
    • personal reflection on learning,
    • infographic,
    • summary video,
    • advertisement,
    • brochure,
    • research proposal,
    • annotated bibliography or article review,
    • analysis of data
    • Other alternative assessments in Canvas
  • If needed, consider granting credit and assigning the final grade based on all course performance and grading prior to final exam (e.g. omit the final exam from grade calculations). In this case, instructors should provide students who want to take the final the option of doing so. Consider making arrangements for students to complete the exam later if this is necessary.

Practices to Avoid

  • Do not hold class via Zoom at a time and day the class does not meet or extend class beyond the class end time.
  • Try not to increase the amount of work students are expected to do.
  • If teaching modality must change, avoid asking students to do the same amount and kind of work the syllabus initially expected them to do while (a) compressing the work into a shorter time period and/or (b) reducing their access to instructor, peer, or campus resources. If you have more content than time, reflect on the student learning outcomes for your course and focus on those that are the most important.



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