Instructional Design & Assessment (IDA) offers a range of services for course development. Services offered depend on a number of factors including course enrollment, faculty experience and preference, and resources available within IDA. 

Three categories of Instructional Design support:

  1. Consultation
  2. University Flexible Learning Council & Office of Teaching and Learning (UFLC-OTL) Course Development
  3. College Flexible Learning Council (CFLC) Builds


Some faculty want to make narrower and more targeted changes to their course. Instructional Designers are available to help on a consultation basis on a wide range of topics. Compensation is not available. Please contact Seth Gurell for more information.

Backward Design and Community of Inquiry

Good course design can be applied to any modality (Face to Face, Online, Livestream or combination).  Let's review basic course design principles you can apply to your courses. We will discuss Backward Design and Community of Inquiry as design principles which help ensure your courses meet university outcomes and enhance the student experience.

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Course Design Rubric

After much research and discussion and with consideration for scalability and UVU's unique mission to be a "serious" institution the OSCQR rubric (3rd edition) produced by the Open SUNY Center for Online Teaching Excellence was selected and adapted.

Instructional Designers distilled and customized each element of SUNY's OSCQR rubric to meet UVU's unique needs. Faculty Coaches tested the rubric with a faculty pilot group providing valuable feedback and suggestions which were then implemented and refined into the UVU Course Design Rubric. Finally, the UVU Course Design Rubric was approved by Academic Affairs Council which supports OTL's efforts in its implementation as a quality review for new and established courses.

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FlexStudio Certificate

FlexStudio is an accelerated approach to course design for any mode of delivery. Drawing on theories of outcomes-based education, constructive alignment, and backward design principles, FlexStudio supports faculty in systematically considering the building blocks of course design. 

Once an instructor completes FlexStudio, they receive a certificate of completion and will be added to UVU’s database of FlexStudio certified instructors.

Because review improves retention, and because we all need a little help from our friends, we’ve included our FlexStudio videos here as a reminder of the course design principles covered in FlexStudio.

Assessment Design

Let's focus on how we can reinforce a culture in which academic integrity is expected and celebrated. Rather than simply reacting to cheating when it occurs, we will proactively mitigate it before it ever becomes an issue to resolve.

We will address how to prevent dishonesty on the part of students.  However, we will also outline positive steps to help students feel the sense of accomplishment and pride that comes from completing assignments in honest ways.

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Evaluate/Curate Instructional Content

Ensure Copyright

Copyright laws and acts were passed by Congress to protect the rights of the original owner. It is our responsibility as educators to follow copyright law.

Imagine you have researched and written a paper in your field. You submit it to a journal, but the paper is rejected. Later, you spot your paper in the journal—under someone else’s name! How would you feel about someone else stealing your work?

This is what we as educators do all too frequently with copyright. We assume since it is on the internet, we can use it freely. Or we think the “10% rule” applies to everything we use in class. But both actions could be in violation of the law. 

As you prepare your course material, consult with your instructional designer, and refer to the following documents.

Copyright_SOS document

FairUse Four Factors document

Ensure Accessible Materials

Working with an Instructional Designer, includes making your course materials accessible.  This ensures ALL students regardless of ability can use course resources. It is much simpler to design with accessibility in mind than to retrofit after the fact. 

Following are resources that can walk you through the accessibility work that must be done. Additionally we have the built-in Canvas Accessibility Checker that works within the rich text editor of a page and our UVU institutional Blackboard ALLY software that checks the entire course alerting us to areas that need attention.  

Introduction to Accessibility

Canvas Accessibility Checker

Blackboard Ally

Ally Quickstart for Instructors


UFLC-OTL Course Development

Step #1: Curriculum Approved

The course must be approved by the School/college Curriculum committee as well as the University Curriculum Committee to be considered for development.

Step #2: CFLC/UFLC Approval

The course must be submitted to the school/college College Flexible Learning Council for approval. Final approval is contingent upon the University Flexible Learning Council.

Step #3: FlexStudio

Faculty developing an online or hybrid course for the first time will complete the FlexStudio Qualtrics survey. FlexStudio introduces course design principles through text and video instruction and includes basic assessment questions to reinforce understanding.

Step #4: Course Design Plan

Faculty and instructional designer partner to create a course design plan which outlines the objectives, assessments, and activities for the course.

Step #5: Development

Faculty and instructional designer build the appropriate parts of the course in Canvas which may include custom video or graphics.

Step #6: Quality Review

Once the course is developed and reaches minimum accessibility thresholds, the course is sent to review.

Step #7: Delivery

The first offering or pilot semester is considered part of the course development. Faculty can make adjustments to the course based on student feedback and faculty experience.

Quality Review

Each Full Course Development is reviewed for quality after receiving a 90% Ally score to ensure accessibility thresholds are met.  Courses are reviewed by three independent/anonymous faculty/staff members using the Online Course Design rubric or Hybrid rubric. Reviews typically take two weeks to complete. Once available, faculty and instructional designer review results, discuss and make course revisions which completes the quality review.


Full-development courses are typically compensated. Compensation is tied to Adjunct and Overload rate. For example, if a faculty develops a 3-contact hour course, they would be paid the equivalent of teaching a 3-contact hour course. The current Adjunct and Overload rate can be found in the HR section of myUVU.

Full-time faculty receive compensation twice during the course development process. The first payment occurs when the faculty complete the Course Design Plan with the instructional designer. The second payment occurs after revisions are made as part of the quality review.

Contact Seth Gurell for more information about course compensation.

CFLC Builds

In order to meet the demand of students and regional needs, demand for course development may exceed Instructional Designer capacity. CFLC Builds are intended to provide a structured method of developing an online course while promoting quality for experienced instructors.

CFLC Builds have multiple milestones:

  1. Course Design Plan: A course design plan which outlines the objectives, assessments, and activities for the course.
  2. Button up: Application of a course template to ensure consistent navigation.
  3. Quality Review: Anonymous review of the course by three peer faculty and a faculty response to the review.
  4. Student survey: Students complete a survey related to course design and faculty responds to their feedback.

Contact your CFLC representative for more information about CFLC Builds and how to get started.