We encourage faculty to design their courses resiliently, with elements that are resistant, and adaptable, to potential disruptions in the learning environment. This approach allows faculty to prepare for a wide variety of situations without having to create separate plans or course designs for every possible ‘what if’ scenario.

In resilient course design, all courses offer some combination of opportunities for asynchronous engagement (faculty-student, student-content, and student-student) in an online environment alongside synchronous engagement (either in a physical classroom or using instructional technologies). Once planned, the balance of these opportunities can be varied depending on how circumstances change and develop. 

Resilient course design starts by identifying essential learning goals and then backward designing courses to organize materials and  learning activities intentionally around those goals. Each faculty member identifies what elements of the course content can be delivered in an asynchronous manner and then identifies what elements of a course derive the most value from face-to-face engagement opportunities. Faculty plan what these face-to-face opportunities will look like in a classroom or other physical space, and also how they might occur in an online environment if in-person teaching is not possible for whatever reason. 

Many of the elements of resilient pedagogy echo best practices of the universal design for learning (UDL) and transparency in learning and teaching (TILT) frameworks that have been shown to significantly improve the experience for all students, including students with disabilities, and, among others, first-generation students. 

The pages below present information about resilient pedagogical approaches, the resources available to you, and how you might use them.