Leading Practices for Equity in Online and Hybrid Teaching

Systemic inequities are known to increase in an online or hybrid setting [Gavassa et al. 2019, Howard et al. 2019, Verschelden 2017, Xu et al. 2014]. Members of our Brandeis teaching community can provide equitable opportunities for all our students by adopting evidence-based practices that reduce equity gaps. Three of those practices are summarized here. For more information, please consult Nine Evidence-based Teaching Practices That Combat Systemic Inequities and the accompanying annotated bibliography with full citations.

1. Structure your course clearly, visibly, transparently

Course structure and class meeting structure should be visible and clear to students, with consistent labels and reminders to indicate learning goals and approaches. This offers all students an opportunity to recognize and understand the rationale for the course’s design and how the sequence of learning activities will help them to acquire knowledge and build skills through the course materials, activities and assignments.

2. Engage your students with compassion and support

Engage students equitably, with support and compassion, using the fewest, simplest, tools possible. Create opportunities for students to engage each other in collaborative work.

3. Assess equitably; encourage student self-assessment

Assess students’ progress equitably to insure that all students are learning and understanding throughout the course, week to week. Equitable assessments are characterized by: alignment with course knowledge and skills, clarity of processes and criteria for grading, testing environments that decrease stereotype threat, inclusive content, and focus on applicability of tested knowledge and skills.