Online Course Policies

Course Meeting Times for Courses Scheduled as Web, Zoom and VIDCOM

Courses scheduled as WEB shall have no fixed or scheduled all-class meeting times where new content is delivered that have a requirement or grade-dependent expectation for students to attend or participate. Voluntary, supplemental course meetings may be scheduled. Individual meetings that serve as consultations may be scheduled at a mutually agreed upon time, as part of Regular and Substantive Interaction (see below). For WEB courses without meeting times, all fields in the schedule now show WEB rather than TBA.

Courses scheduled as ZOOM or VIDCOM will have fixed meeting times on the schedule.     

Courses scheduled as WEB, ZOOM or VIDCOM may have fixed assignment due dates and times as well as fixed exam windows. 

Proctored Exams

Courses scheduled as WEB, ZOOM or VIDCOM that require a proctored exam must accommodate student availability and convenience of venue as much as possible. The course syllabus needs to have detailed information about the requirement for proctoring and acceptable locations, as well as exam date/time windows.  

University Closures

WEB courses (including those offered as part of eCampus) should observe University closure dates whenever possible, except for Winter terms. University closures due to weather may affect both synchronous ZOOM/VIDCOM courses and asynchronous WEB courses. Please be aware that students may have disrupted schedules due to circumstances beyond their control. Instructors are expected to communicate expectations regarding university closures with students and students are expected to continue checking email and Canvas during extended closures. 

Final Exams for Online, Web, Zoom or VIDCOM Courses

Final exams should be scheduled with a window that accounts for other fixed final exam times.  All coursework, including exams and final projects, must be completed by the last day of finals (or in the case of smaller parts of term, the end of the term). Canvas has no option to allow for students to complete assignments after midnight on the last day of the term.  

Accessibility of Course Materials

All course materials should have accessibility options for diverse learners. PDFs or other text-based documents should include optical character recognition. Images, including those in documents and within the course management system, should have alt-text. Voice and video recordings or lectures should include transcripts or closed captioning. There may be other considerations and instructors should make every effort to make their course accessible prior to enrolling students. 

Regular and Substantive Interaction

The Department of Education requires that all courses offered by Murray State have regular and substantive interaction. The University’s policy statement says: All Murray State course offerings that use online or hybrid formats will comply with regulations concerning regular and substantive interaction requirements for online and hybrid courses. Therefore, all online or hybrid courses must include interaction that is meaningful or of an academic nature, initiated by the instructor (or other personnel recognized by accreditation standards with instructional responsibilities within the course) to occur regularly and frequently. 

Further, the policy states that “No credit-bearing Murray State courses should be taught as self-paced with merely provided materials, recorded lectures, and automatic grading. While these components may be part of an online or hybrid course, all courses must also include a variety of meaningful/academic interactions. Assignments should be due throughout the course with opportunity for feedback and the refinement of learning.”  

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