With the accreditation team visit scheduled for the week ending October 9, 2015, the information below might help to jog your memory if visiting team members ask about DE issues, including Regular Effective Contact and Accessibility:

Regular Effective Contact/Regular Substantive Interaction

  • Title 5 defines REC, and stresses the importance of “instructor initiated” contact with students in DE courses.
  • REC is the thing that distinguishes DE courses from correspondence courses. FLC does not offer correspondence courses.
  • REC is required in both hybrid and online courses. That is, the face-to-face time you spend with your students in a hybrid course does not count as “contact” for the purposes of REC, and you should also maintain contact with your students for the online parts of your course.
  • The college has a set of guidelines for online, hybrid and web-enhanced instruction: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1E2fpEQx5kY_lJ3EDf7OJaZv1F8qEjBc-DA7if-hjTzA/edit?usp=sharing
  • The district “audited” REC in online and hybrid courses last semester, using the metric of 1 contact per unit per week. For a 3 unit, 100% online course, this would be a minimum of 3 contacts per week. In most courses audited, the contact was evident. In some, contact occurred but was not visible to the auditors, and DO requested additional information from faculty teaching those courses.
  • REC can be accomplished in a variety of ways and using a variety of tools, including but not limited to email messages to students, responses to discussion postings, news items, and other forms of feedback.
  • The DE course checklist linked below might help you assess REC in your course: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1WdCY14pQ0w-eqlwFl6t4E8i3xEQk1oQ52Z8NIVR7mwk/edit?usp=sharing
  • @One offers a very much more in-depth rubric entitled “Standards for Quality Online Teaching” that you may find helpful: https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/60279976/%40ONE_SQOT.pdf


  • While it isn’t perfect, D2L as a platform is considered generally accessible to students with disabilities.
  • The law states that all video files in your online and hybrid courses should be captioned.
  • The law states that you should provide a transcript for all audio files in your online and hybrid courses.
  • If you have content in your online or hybrid courses that doesn’t meet accessibility guidelines, it’s important to be aware of and work toward compliance.
  • For more information about captioning, you may wish to view this desktop seminar from @One: http://www.3cmediasolutions.org/node/17912
  • 3C Media Solutions has a grant-funded captioning service, and you can request captioning for videos that you upload: http://www.3cmediasolutions.org/sites/default/files/How%20to%20Request%20a%20DECT.pdf
  • The college will soon be hiring a .6 Education Media Design Specialist, a permanent position working out of the DSP&S office to assist with accessibility issues.

Presentation slides from Beyond the LMS: Tools for Increasing Student Engagement & Success


Using Google Hangouts through Los Rios Google Apps


Replace the x’s with your id number, and it’s always best to be logged in to apps.losrios.edu prior to clicking the link. Personally, I use Chrome for apps.losrios.edu and Firefox for all Google things linked to other GMail accounts.  Once you start the Hangout, you will be able to invite individual users, or share the link in D2L. Students won’t need to use a private Gmail and you will be under the umbrella of Los Rios.

Accessibility and VoiceThread


1.  New Dean – Molly Senecal – Hurray!

2.  Distance Education Strategic Plan – Spring 2016?
Revisit SWOT analysis from 2012?

3.  Crash Course – May 21 and 22

4.  Library Lyna
Our Mission – To host the largest collection of high quality educational 3D models to foster learning of the blind and visually impaired.

5.  Full-time Adaptive Media Design Specialist

6.  Amara.org for subtitles

7.  Email from D2L – Summer 2015

Topics we discussed:

OEI Decision and What it Means for FLC

New Dean of Research & Planning, DE, Innovation Center and Equity

Regular Effective/Substantive Contact
Readiness tool
REC Widget
Recommendations for syllabus

DSP&S Review of Courses for ADA Compliance

Crash Course May 21 & 22

Firefox Hello
Doesn’t work in iOS.  Works fine with MacOS.

1.  D2L Data

For Spring 2015:

  • 432 course sections, or 61% of all course sections are linked to D2L course accounts
  • 6,534 (unduplicated) students, or 84% of all students are enrolled in courses linked to a D2L course account
  • 157 faculty from 65 disciplines are using D2L course accounts
  • Approximately 57% of faculty (full and part-time) are using D2L to support online, hybrid, and face-to-face courses

2.  Dean of DE

3.  Adaptive Media Design Specialist

The Accessibility and Universal Design Specialist supports faculty in the development of effective online learning environments for online, hybrid, web-enhanced course sections, and in-person courses to ensure that all content and media meet approved web accessibility standards and the principles of Universal Design. The position serves as the main point of contact for support of the college’s *Web Accessibility plan. The position will also develop and deliver training incorporating Universal Design principles for college faculty and staff.


  • Consults with instructional divisions and other departments on standards and best practices for compliance with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0 (WCAG) AA standards for instructional materials and principles of Universal Design.
  • Works with individual faculty members and departments to design accessible online courses and course components, including assessments
  • Develops materials and resources that promote the principles of Universal Design and web accessibility
  • Provides technology based training sessions to individual faculty and small groups as appropriate
  • Serves as main point of contact for college-wide Web Accessibility plan.

4.  Innovation Center/Media Services Video Program

5.  ARC’s Instructional Technology Center’s Accessibility Series: Caption Your Videos

6.  Changes to Socrates and the DE Subcommittee of Curriculum

7.  OEI Chooses Instructure Canvas as Systemwide LMS

8.  Regular Effective/Substantive Contact Update

Today, I sent out the following to all FLC faculty:

If you teach online, or plan to in the future, consider enrolling in this free online Web Accessibility course, which begins on October 20th. See below for details. It’s co-sponsored by D2L, so the content will likely be applicable. Please let me know if you plan to enroll – perhaps we can get a cohort organized and work on the course together.

Web Accessibility MOOC for Online Educators (Fall 2014)
Many eLearning educators are under-prepared to deal with web accessibility issues. This free MOOC, sponsored by Portland Community College and D2L, provides a free professional development opportunity to help eLearning professionals meet the challenges of addressing accessibility in online learning. Course begins October 20th.

Registration is now open: https://opencourses.desire2learn.com/cat/course/web-accessibility-7195/

I registered myself, and have already heard from a couple of folks who plan to complete the course, which will strengthen FLC’s overall capacity when it comes to addressing accessibility.