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PoRTAL: Purdue Repository for online Teaching and Learning

The Purdue Repository for online Teaching and Learning (PoRTAL) digital repository is the go-to resource for anyone interested in online teaching and learning. Are you thinking about moving your courses to an online format? Are you already teaching online and looking for additional ways to engage your students? PoRTAL can help you improve your knowledge and skills as you seek to develop your online courses. Topics include: instructor strategies, course enhancement, pedagogy, active learning, sample tools, and policies to help make your job easier as an online instructor and your courses more engaging for your students.

As you browse through PoRTAL you will discover that each document is complete with an overview of the topic, an outline of evidence-based best practices (as applicable), and tips and tricks for implementing the ideas. We trust PoRTAL will be a powerful resource for you as you continue growing and developing your skills as an online instructor. Please check back regularly as we add more resources to the repository.

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Strategies for Online Teaching and Learning


Authentic Learning

Active LearningCourse DesignCourse EnhancementInstructional StrategiesPedagogyStudent Engagement

Prepare learners for the real world by implementing an authentic learning approach that designs learning tasks in real-life situations aiming to support successful knowledge transfer to new contexts.


Case Based Learning

Active LearningCommunicationCourse DesignInstructional StrategiesPedagogyStudent Engagement

Use case-based learning as a strategy to motivate learners and help them gain experience with real-world problems presented as stories set in professional contexts.


Discussion Board Facilitation

Active LearningCommunicationCourse DesignDiscussion BoardsInstructional StrategiesStudent Engagment

Improve your online course discussions by facilitating dialogue during different times of your online course.


Instructor Role Adjustment

Getting StartedInstructional Strategies

Become a facilitator in your online course and give learner centered instruction in your online courses.


Journaling with Students

Active LearningCommunicationCourse DesignInstructional StrategiesPedagogySample ToolsStudent Engagement

Use journaling with your students to encourage self-reflection, to encourage critical thinking, and to build rapport in the online environment.


Online Teaching Persona

CommunicationDiscussion BoardsGetting StartedInstructional StrategiesPedagogySample Tools

Develop your teaching persona to build rapport with your online students.


Posting with Intentionality

CommunicationDiscussion BoardsInstructional StrategiesStudent Engagment

Apply strategies to post purposefully and to promote critical thinking and support the development of a learning community.


Principles for Online Teaching

Active LearningCourse DesignDiscussion BoardsGetting StartedInstructional StrategiesStudent Engagment

Create effective and satisfying online learning experiences for students and teaching experiences for instructors.


Readiness to Teach Online

Getting StartedInstructional Strategies

Get ready to teach online. Learn to transfer f2f teaching expertise to online teaching skills.


Social Presence

Active LearningCommunicationCourse DesignDiscussion BoardsInstructional StrategiesPedagogySample Tools

Create a comfortable environment to promote interaction among students and between students and instructor to promote learning.


Use of Technology to Enhance Language Teaching

CommunicationCourse DesignCourse EnhancementInstructional StrategiesPedagogySample ToolsStudent Engagement

Incorporate technology into your course to enhance language teaching and learning, and improve the interaction with and engagement from students.


Getting Students Ready for Peer Reviews

Active LearningCourse DesignInstructional StrategiesStudent Engagement

Use peer review as a strategy to provide formative feedback, nurture collaboration, and foster active learning.

Getting Started...Thinking about Your Course Design


Interactive Synchronous Sessions in Online Courses

CommunicationCourse DesignInstructional StrategiesCourse EnhancementSample ToolsStudent Engagement

Make your synchronous sessions interactive and engaging.


CDD Online Course Evaluation Rubric

CommunicationCourse DesignGetting StartedStudent Engagment

Evaluate your online course using the Course Design and Development Rubric. Familiarize with the resources to evaluate your online courses.


Community of Inquiry

Active LearningCourse DesignDiscussion BoardsInstructional StrategiesPedagogySample ToolsStudent Engagment

Use the Community of Inquiry framework to establish teaching, social, and cognitive presences in your online course.


Cultural Competence

CommunicationCourse DesignDiscussion BoardsInstructional StrategiesPedagogy

Build cultural competence to address the individual needs of online students. Apply practical suggestions to make a culturally sensitive online course.


Student-Centered Teaching

Active LearningCommunicationCourse DesignInstructional StrategiesPedagogyStudent Engagment

Apply strategies to encourage the development of knowledge, skills, and attitudes by students.


Universal Design for Learning (UDL)

Course DesignCourse EnhancementInstructional StrategiesSample Tools

Maximize student success with multiple means of engagement, representation, action and expression.

Upping your Game


21st Century Skills and Online Learning

Active LearningCourse EnhancementInstructional StrategiesPedagogySample ToolsUpping your Game

Provide your online students with the skills and competencies required to meet the needs of the 21st century workplace.



Course EnhancementInstructional StrategiesPedagogySample ToolsStudent EngagmentUpping your Game

Engage your online students using gamification strategies and tools.


Information Literacy

Course EnhancementInstructional StrategiesUpping your Game

Teach correct use of information by integrating information literacy in your online course.


Open Educational Resources

Course DesignCourse EnhancementSample ToolsStudent EngagmentUpping your Game

Adopt Open Educational Resources to customize course materials, improve student satisfaction, and reduce student posts.



Course EnhancementInstructional StrategiesSample Tools Upping your Game

Build teams, create team agreements and promote team activities for greater collaboration and learning

Policies & Procedures


Accessibility 101

CommunicationCourse DesignPolicies & Procedures

Check for accessibility in your online course through these quick tips and resources



Course DesignPolicies & Procedures

Identify Copyright best practices and resources for your online course


Course Management Strategies

Course DesignDiscussion BoardsGetting StartedPolicies & ProceduresSample Tools

Apply "word to the wise" strategies to manage your online course and guide online learners.


Strategies for Online Academic Integrity

Course DesignInstructional StrategiesPolicies & ProceduresSample Tools

Equip yourself with tools and techniques to prevent plagiarism and to secure online instructional materials and assessments.


Syllabus for Online Teaching

CommunicationCourse DesignPolicies & ProceduresSample Tools

Design a syllabus that lists expectations for course delivery, class participation, assignments, and communication.

Purdue University welcomes your feedback and hopes you will take some time to answer a brief 2 minute survey about PoRTAL.

Help Us with Your Feedback

The development of PoRTAL involves partners from across Purdue University: Teaching and Learning Technologies, Center for Instructional Excellence, Purdue Online, Purdue Libraries, and the academic program Learning Design and Technology (College of Education), essentially bringing together specialists and their knowledge of online teaching and learning into a single location. For a listing of team members click here. For questions, comments, or feedback contact the project team at:

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