Course Design in Higher Education: Ohio State Online Programs

Digital Learning, Office of Academic Affairs

Eligibility for this endorsement is limited to instructors in Ohio State Online programs who are already working with instructional designers on the Digital Learning team in the Office of Academic Affairs to design a course.


Instructors who wish to design significant, effective, and assessable learning opportunities can benefit from ongoing practice and support with preparation through intensive training in student-centered course design. With one-on-one support from an instructional designer, instructors who are planning courses in Ohio State’s fully online programs go through a semester-long course-design process that culminates in a written course plan, online course website and materials, and an evaluation of the course based on key characteristics of online teaching. 

In this Course Design in Higher Education endorsement, you will receive expert support in learning and applying the backward design process. This endorsement will provide you with the tools, time and support you need as you work to build or rebuild effective, student-centered courses. 

Learning Outcomes
  • Describe the process of backward design to create or revise a course. 
  • Evaluate the design of an online course based on key components of effective online instruction 
  • Identify strategies and source of course assessment information for making ongoing updates and revisions to improve the course. 
Participation Requirements

As noted above, eligibility for this endorsement is limited to instructors in Ohio State Online programs who are working with instructional designers on the Digital Learning team to design or redesign a course. Depending on the specific activities you engage in during that process, this endorsement may take 15-30 hours to complete, with an average of 15-20 hours expected.

To be considered for endorsement, you must:

  1. Be affiliated with an Ohio State Online fully online degree or certificate program
  2. Meet with instructional design staff at least five times within the span of a semester to design or redesign a course offered in that program
  3. Engage in at least three of the following activities, with support of instructional designers and staff:
    • Write or revise course learning outcomes
    • Develop or revise course assignments
    • Develop or revise integrated course plan
    • Create or curate course readings and other learning materials (with support of library liaison or subject librarian)
    • Create interactive multimedia objects (DIY or with support of media staff)
    • Incorporate inclusive teaching strategies and course materials
    • Develop an accessible, user-friendly CarmenCanvas course
    • Ensure digital accessibility of course materials through proactive generation of accessible materials and/or remediation of inaccessible materials
    • Implement one or more teaching strategies from Ohio State's Effective Practices for Online Teaching

Contact theEducator Professional Learning team if you have questions about these offerings or your eligibility to apply for endorsement. 

Learn more about all endorsement programs provided by Digital Learning in the Office of Academic Affairs on our Endorsements for Educators page.

To browse upcoming offerings, visit the learning opportunities feed in the Teaching and Learning Resource Center. Contact the Educator Professional Learning team if you have questions about these offerings or your eligibility to apply for endorsement.

Learn more about all endorsement programs provided by Digital Learning in the Office of Academic Affairs on their Endorsements for Educators page.



The final teaching endorsement application will require you to upload the course handoff document provided to you by your Ohio State Online instructional designer.

Required Hours
Timeline for Completion
1 academic term, plus the weeks immediately before and after