ReFocus Online – Week 1 Update

From: “Victoria Russell (vrussel3)” <>
Date: Monday, June 15, 2020 at 11:33 AM
To: “Victoria Russell (vrussel3)” <>
Cc: Digital Learning Support <>
Subject: ReFocus Online News (June 15th edition)

Welcome to Week 1 of ReFocus Online: Course Structure and Communication!

  • Website
    The Week 1 page is now open and full of information to begin building an online course structure and designing communication channels with your students.
  • Week 1 Interactive Workshop
    The link for today’s workshop was sent out late Friday afternoon (5:22 p.m.) to everyone who registered. Please check your email (including your junk email–we seem to have landed there for quite a few people!) and we’ll see you at 2:00!
  • Week 1 Virtual Q&A
    This week’s Virtual Q&A will occur on Wednesday, June 17th, 10-11 a.m.  A few things to note about this session:

    • Virtual Q&As will NOT be recorded. We will keep record of all questions and answers and post them to a FAQ page on the website.
    • A link for the Virtual Q&A will be sent out Wednesday morning. It will not be posted on the website. Registration is NOT required for the Virtual Q&A sessions.
    • A form to submit questions ahead of time will be available on the ReFocus Online website beginning this afternoon. We also encourage you to submit questions via the public chat during the Q&A session. We may not be able to address all questions during the session, but will make sure to respond to everyone in some capacity.
  • Consultations with Center for Teaching and Digital Learning Support
    Book a consultation with our team! We are using an online appointment system–just choose the center you wish to work with and select an available day and time. A confirmation will be emailed to you including a meeting link for your scheduled time. Consultations can be booked as far as 2 weeks in advance and up to one day ahead. Each consultation lasts 30 minutes and there are a limited number each day.

Looking ahead to Week 2: Assignments and Feedback…

  • Registration for Week 2 Interactive Workshop will open at 3:30 p.m. today (6/15) and close this Friday (6/19) at 5:00 p.m. The following concurrent sessions will be available:
    • Core Session (Jerry Slezak, Jessica Machado, and Victoria Russell)
      This is a ‘new to online teaching’/beginner workshop focused on creating a clear assessment map for an online course and designing feedback as a continuous interaction with students. (Note: This concurrent session will repeat during the second round of ReFocus Online)
    • Navigating Assignments and The Gradebook on Canvas (Melissa Wells, COE and Center for Teaching Faculty Fellow)
      We know that feedback is key when it comes to learning, but what are the most efficient ways to use Canvas when it comes to managing feedback? This session will walk through the basics of setting up your Canvas gradebook through assignment creation, including how to build rubrics into Canvas assignments. This workshop will be a balance of modeling and experimenting with these ideas in your own Canvas sandbox courses, so come with your own questions and ideas to try out! (Note: This concurrent session will not repeat during the second round of ReFocus Online)
    • What’s Your Connection?: Using On-line Learning to Keep Students Engaged (Cate Brewer, CAS-Theatre and Dance)
      Regardless of the modality, it is our connection to our students and our passion for teaching that makes UMW faculty strong. Instead of focusing on the limitations of the modality that we use, this session will reframe our thinking and offer some clear and defined ways to keep students engaged in on-line learning through a discussion of several tools mainly available through our current Canvas offerings. (Note: this concurrent session will not repeat during the second round of ReFocus Online)

We hope you all have a good week!

Center for Teaching and Digital Learning Support


Dr. Victoria Russell
Associate Director-Center for Teaching
Associate Professor-College of Education
University of Mary Washington

Twitter: @techtweed