Teach Online

Online teaching endorsement is required to teach online at the University of Mississippi. Since most online courses at UM are offered in an asynchronous format on Blackboard, online instructors are encouraged to follow standard practices for effective online teaching and course design. Explore Standard Practices for information on course standards and expectations, and Online Instructor Endorsement for information on how to get endorsed to teach online at UM.

Standard Practices

The majority of online courses offered at the University of Mississippi are asynchronous learning. With this type of online distance learning, students have flexibility on when to complete their coursework. A student-centered approach is commonly adopted in UM online courses. Using this approach, instructors create online courses that are engaging, supportive and accessible in line with online course standards nationwide. Academic Outreach supports the implementation of 12 commonalities found in widely used standards as listed in Online Course Design in Higher Education: A Review of National and Statewide Evaluation Instruments (Baldwin, Ching, & Hsu, 2018):

  • Objectives are available
  • Navigation is intuitive
  • Technology is used to promote learner engagement/facilitate learning
  • Student-to-student interaction is supported
  • Communication and activities are used to build community
  • Instructor contact information is stated
  • Expectations regarding quality of communication/participation are provided
  • Assessment rubrics for grading assignments are provided
  • Assessments align with objectives
  • Links to institutional services are provided
  • Course has accommodations for students with disabilities
  • Course policies are stated for behavior expectations

Online Instructor Endorsement

What do I need to do in order to teach online at the University of Mississippi?

1. Discuss

Discuss online teaching with your Academic Chair.

2. Identify

Identify the course you will teach online and an expected term of course offering.

3. Enroll

Entroll in Online Teaching Endorsement (OTE). An experienced online instructor may be exempt from one or two modules.

4. Complete

Complete all assigned modules and activities two weeks prior to teaching online.


Receive an Award of Completion and online teaching endorsement.

When an instructor is assigned to teach an online or “web-based” course at the University of Mississippi, the next step is to get an online teaching endorsement from the Office of Academic Outreach.

In order to be endorsed, instructors must complete the Online Teaching Endorsement (OTE) prior to the beginning of the semester they are scheduled to teach. Successful candidates receive an Award of Completion and are then eligible to teach online at UM.

The goal of the OTE is to familiarize online instructors with the pedagogical concepts of effective and engaging online teaching and learning, as well as to give them hands-on experience in designing and developing their online course. The OTE consists of four modules offered fully online in Blackboard Learn. Participants can enroll at any time by completing the Online Teaching Endorsement Registration online form.

Online Teaching Endorsement modules:

Online Teaching & Learning*

Focuses on student-centered learning, the theory of online teaching, and standard practices.

Course Compliance

Focuses on compliance and UM policies in relation to online education. The module also provides information on available technology at the University of Mississippi.

Course Design*

Focuses on designing learning activities and assessments that align with the learning objectives.

Course Development

Focuses on applying the theory of online teaching and design into practice. Candidates will create course components in their assigned sandbox.

*Instructors with significant online teaching experience may be exempt from up to two modules.