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Free Faculty Training Product to Help Universities Move Online in Response to Coronavirus

Written by Christopher "Chip" Paucek on Mar 16, 2020

Related content: Digital Education

Over the last few weeks, 2U has been relentlessly focused on protecting the health of our employees, acting as a support system for our incredible network of partners, and ensuring the continuity of our business. It’s made me proud to watch our teams come together at this time and continue to provide world-class support and services to our partners and their students.

Online learning is being embraced as an important way to provide students with educational continuity, as universities close their campuses to contain the spread of Covid-19. Hundreds of millions of students and thousands of teachers and faculty will be experiencing online education for the first time this week. But it takes more than technology for great online learning.

A standard part of running any 2U-powered degree program is training faculty to teach online. Every single faculty member goes through this training which creates a comfort level in navigating live classes with ease and essentially creating “pro” level users.

Across the board, our partners have told us that the most critical way we can support them as they race to move online is by assisting their faculty. That’s why starting today, we’re offering our entire network of partners free access to No Back Row® PRO, a new service-oriented product that features the same high-quality training that faculty in 2U-powered online programs receive as part of their onboarding.

Faculty members will be offered a suite of best-practice trainings—in large and smaller group sessions—to prepare them to effectively teach online. We believe these virtual training workshops, which will include tutorials and practice sessions on Zoom, and supplemental resources and support, will meet a critical need. By empowering faculty and helping them gain greater confidence in teaching online, we believe NoBackRow® PRO will enhance the quality of teaching and learning that happens in thousands of newly launched virtual classrooms around the world.

No Back Row® PRO will include:

  • Live webinars: scheduled, regular orientation sessions designed for first-time users of an online platform for large groups.
  • Office hours: scheduled, smaller group sessions of faculty members—focused on online teaching strategies and pedagogy.
  • Practice sessions: scheduled, small group sessions of faculty to practice skills and techniques for teaching in live Zoom classrooms, including how to engage students in lively discussions.
  • Pro Certified Star Faculty Webinars: open sessions with faculty in various disciplines who have been teaching in live sessions for many years to get practical tips of the trade.

2U has spent over a decade helping great universities deliver high-quality online learning experiences to students, including supporting over 700,000 live classes and training thousands of university faculty members. As universities quickly move their institutions online in the face of this health crisis, we are leveraging our 2UOS technology, data, and people in whatever ways we can to meet our partners’ needs more broadly at this urgent time of need.

Learn more about us.

At 2U, we’re on a mission—to eliminate the back row in higher education and help universities thrive in the digital age. To learn more about who we are and what we do, follow the links below.