Learning Design Support at Penn State

There are many learning design resources available across the Penn State system. Read on for information on central resources, University Park’s college-based resources, and additional campus-based resources.


Central Resources

The Clearinghouse for Military Family Readiness

The Clearinghouse for Military Family Readiness is part of Penn State’s Social Science Research Institute, within the office of the Vice President for Research.  The Clearinghouse provides research, content development, instructional design, evaluation, and implementation of education and training resources for all branches of the military service.   Our primary goal is to support and enhance military families’ readiness and resiliency throughout and beyond their military experiences, although some of our work also serves individuals and families within the general population.

Contacts: Sing Wong, szw5009@psu.edu

IT Learning and Development (ITLD)

IT Learning and Development provides thousands of self-paced learning resources (e.g. Learning Paths, video courses, documents, etc.) and live training programs (e.g. Online workshops, classroom-based training, etc.) tailored to serve students, faculty, and staff across the entire Penn State community at all campus locations. Our team of professional Instructional Designers, IT Training Specialists, eLearning Developers, and Documentation specialists continually design, develop, deliver, and maintain this suite of resources and live courses in partnership with subject matter experts and end-users to ensure quality, applicability, and accuracy. Our goal is for every resource we create and every training session we offer to help students, faculty, and staff…

  • adopt new University technologies quickly and efficiently (with minimal disruption to their work).
  • utilize new and existing technologies effectively to accomplish specific tasks and achieve their goals.
  • get the most out of University-provided technologies to enhance their teaching, learning, research, and/or administrative work.

Search or browse all of our self-paced and live training options on a wide variety of technologies and topics on the “Find Training” page of the ITLD website. New and updated resources are added almost every day, but some popular teaching & learning topics for which we provide ongoing support include: Canvas, Accessibility, Box, Office365, Zoom, and more! If you can’t find what you are looking for, we also provide live Training on Demand (TOD) sessions both online and in-person when possible. This includes in-classroom training for students and live training for groups of faculty or staff who may require a more tailored version of one or more of our courses to meet their needs. Learn more or request a session via the ITLD website’s Training on Demand page.

ITLD also offers free, 24/7 access to Lynda for all students, faculty, and staff at the university. Lynda.psu.edu is an online training library of thousands of high-quality video tutorials on hundreds of software and soft-skill topics, including those related to education and educational technologies. Video tutorials are taught by industry experts, and many include exercise files and other opportunities for active learning, making them an invaluable and extremely popular resource for faculty to incorporate within their courses. Lynda is also popular among Penn State faculty, staff, and students outside of the classroom as a way to access thousands of hours of free professional development to enhance their individual skills in leadership, programming languages, emerging educational technologies, and more

For units and groups who want to provide local professional development or training opportunities to faculty, instructional designers, or students on any of the topics or technologies ITLD supports, our staff are happy to share our knowledge and materials to support your efforts! Please reach out to us to learn more about our other services, to get help locating the resources that can best serve you or your group, or to inquire about the potential to collaborate with us in the future.

Learning Design, Penn State World Campus

This learning design unit partners with colleges across Penn State to create and maintain online courses. Learning Design offers full-service support in all facets of online course development, including comprehensive pedagogical guidance to promote student engagement and mastery of objectives; accessibility services to meet the University’s ADA requirements; multimedia, programing, and usability resources to integrate educational technology; editorial support to cultivate engaging and effective course content; extensive quality assurance services to facilitate copyright compliance, test critical course functions, and procure materials; and research support to evaluate online pedagogy and technologies that support online learners. Learning Design strives to bolster the University’s position at the forefront of online education through extensive research, training, innovation, and collaboration with its partners in higher education.
Contact: Chris Millet, chrismillet@psu.edu

Shared Programs

Penn State University offers a variety of Shared Programs, which are academic programs that operate as one degree offering across colleges or campuses (delivered as consortia or via joint partnership) and span geographic locations. The curriculum is evaluated based on standards applied to all academic programs, and learning outcomes are the same for shared, and stand-alone programs. Shared programs are aligned with the vision, mission and strategic goals of the partners. These programs are designed to leverage campus or college resources to provide seamless, consistent, and efficient student and faculty experiences.

Shared programs are offered to students via a mix of courses delivery modes including face-to-face (residential), video-conferencing, blended, and online. These delivery methods connect multiple locations allowing students at different locations to gain access to the degree program. These programs offer new opportunities for students who may not otherwise have had access to the degree and also provide a larger student and faculty community across the consortia. New shared academic programs have and continue to be proposed in support of University initiatives to develop strategically important programs that are projected to be growth areas in Pennsylvania.

There are two half Instructional Designer positions split between Teaching and Learning with Technology (TLT) that support faculty throughout the commonwealth who are part of Shared Programs. The six areas of support focus provided by the Instructional Designers include:

The first of two primary support areas includes instructional design services to assist the timely development and revision of courses identified as part of shared programs. The second primary support area includes a three-pronged approach to faculty development.

The three-pronged approach has been designed to maximize resources and capitalize on the skills and specialty of instructional designers in locations throughout the state while addressing gaps in offerings at each location. The three prongs have been developed to build upon each other and each varies in terms of time commitment, format, audience, and outcomes.

The foundational tier is supported by the World Campus Faculty Development OL (Online Learning) courses, specifically OL 2000 – Essentials of Online Teaching and OL 3000 – Supporting Accessibility for Online Learners.

The practical tier is an eLearning Series provided each fall semester and focuses on the unique opportunities and challenges of faculty teaching within shared programs. It consists of five synchronous sessions that are each followed by asynchronous resources and discussions.

The innovative tier is the TLT REACH (Re-imagine, Engage, Align, and CHange) Initiative. The program provides faculty with a support team to design and develop a highly innovative web-enhanced, blended, or online course. The goal for this initiative is to produce a resident course that is rich in student engagement and interaction, effectively utilizes communication technologies to bridge the distance factor, and is shareable and reusable.

Contact: Marilyn Goodrich, mag313@psu.edu

Teaching and Learning with Technology

Teaching and Learning with Technology (TLT), engages in eLearning design and development via partnerships established with individual faculty from across the University. These partnerships are in support of innovative practice, OER, analytics, and learning spaces.

College- and Unit-based Resources at University Park

College of Agricultural Sciences

The College of Agricultural Sciences eLearning department works directly with faculty at University Park as well as other Commonwealth campuses. We provide one-on-one support to  subject matter experts (SME) that are developing technical content for online education. Specifically, our Instructional Designers help to create courses based on authentic learning objectives and meaningful assessments. We also help instructors understand and use Canvas and best practices to support student learning.  To help students grasp the unique agricultural and scientific contexts they are studying, our online courses contain a variety of multimedia, including high-resolution photography and high-definition video. In addition, our courses utilize technology like interactive charts and embedded knowledge checks to increase student engagement and comprehension. Agriculture students need a personalized view of precise environments and we strive to make the learning process as relevant as possible.

College of Ag eLearning courses are designed and developed solely in Canvas. To support collaboration, students may participate in asynchronous discussions or synchronous sessions via Zoom. Integrated labs, case studies, and project-based assessments provide rich and effective learning opportunities. Our course portfolio includes Associate, Undergraduate, and Graduate degree programs, as well as Graduate certificate options. We offer these online courses to both residential and online students through the Digital Learning Cooperative and the World Campus. Please visit http://agsci.psu.edu/elearning/programs for more information about online degree and certificate programs.

Contact: Akbar Khouzani, axs197@psu.edu

College of Arts and Architecture

The Office of Digital Learning works with the seven academic units within the College to design, develop and delivery online and blended course for the College. Their staff consists of 9 full-time and part-time employees including a director, manager of instructional design, two instructional designers, media specialist, instructional technologist (Drupal Programmer), program coordinator, and support staff. In addition, the Institute collaborates with numerous faculty across the College through faculty fellowship appointments used to develop/revise courseware.

The Office utilizes a standardized instructional design and development model designed to meet the needs of their faculty. The driving purpose of their process is to ensure that every online course offered by the College of Arts and Architecture is of the highest possible quality. This includes courses created by the Office of Digital Learning, as well as those developed by faculty in partnership with the Office.

Course are developed primarily utilizing an e-Learning Management System (ELMS) which is a series of custom modules organized to help manage the design, development, and delivery of their online courses offered at online at UP or through the Digital Learning Cooperative and/or the World Campus. This approach allows the College to create custom, yet standardized versions of their online courses.

The design and development process guides all parties involved in creating a sound, reliable course ensuring student and faculty satisfaction. This process has been informed by the expertise of the instructional design staff of the Institute, representing more than 30 years of lessons learned in the design and development of distance learning. This proven process has been customized to fit the unique needs of the College of Arts and Architecture and provides a reliable method for creating high quality e-learning courses.


  • Results in instruction that is effective, efficient, and consistently repeatable.
  • Establishes a framework that subsequent courses can follow, contributing to sustained effectiveness and quality.
  • Provides a greater return on investment for significant development costs.
  • Ensures that courses are developed and delivered in a timely manner.
  • Provides a mechanism of checks and balances.
  • Ensures that any course developed may be offered more broadly through delivery units such as the World Campus and the Digital Learning Cooperative.

Typical team make-up within the Institute includes:

  • Lead instructional designer
  • Graphic and media specialist
  • Faculty subject matter expert (Faculty Fellow)
  • Instructional technologist

In addition, the College is piloting a quality assurance plan, which is intended to review the quality of the design of each of its online courses. This e-learning continuous quality improvement process (e-LCQI) is a process by which data is collected from a number of sources including students, peer faculty, and learning designers. The ultimate goal is to inform the decision making process for making enhancements and improvements to existing online courses.

College of Earth and Mineral Sciences

The Dutton e-Education Institute works in partnership with the College of Earth and Mineral Science’s five academic departments to cultivate the capacity to design, create, and sustain online courses and programs that embody the best practices in education. The Dutton Institute’s personnel includes the assistant dean for online learning, director of learning design, lead program faculty, faculty instructors, learning design faculty members, instructional designers, programmers, multimedia specialists, and administrative support staff. To date, the College offers 20 online degree and certificate programs. The College has developed more than 130 online and blended courses that attract 1,500 adult professionals annually in addition to our resident students.

To make the best use of College and Institute resources, to gain efficiencies, and to capitalize on individual strengths, Institute personnel typically use a team approach to course development. While team makeup varies depending on the type and scale of a given project, a learning design team generally consists of the following individuals: Faculty author(s), lead learning designer or instructional designer, programmer, media specialist(s), and an assistant learning designer.

To develop and deliver online courses, the project team uses Drupal, an open source, Web-based content management system. They also employ several education-specific Drupal modules developed by the College of Arts and Architecture’s e-Learning Institute. Canvas, the University’s course management system, is also used in course delivery, typically for its communication tools, grade book, course roster, calendar, drop boxes, and quizzing tools. From a workflow standpoint, students spend the majority of their online course experience in the course’s Drupal environment, switching to Canvas only for specific tasks like assignment submission or to participate in a graded online discussion. Hyperlinks between Drupal and Canvas makes this transition easy. Likewise, many courses link from the Drupal environment to Web 2.0 technologies, such as blogs and Adobe Connect, as part of the learning experience. From the student standpoint, the majority of students’ online course experiences will occur in the official university LMS and in Drupal. The Institute is currently working on a technical solution that will show all content within the LMS without regard to whether or not the content is actually on an external site. Examples of EMS online courses are located through the College’s open educational resources initiative (http://open.ems.psu.edu), where faculty authors make courseware freely available to informal learners worldwide.

To address the need for online course quality assurance in the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences, the Dutton Institute has developed a large repository of faculty development resources, located at http://facdev.e-education.psu.edu/. The site includes many popular resources, such as “Managing Your Online Course” (a checklist that walks faculty through the course delivery process, step-by-step), a faculty peer review process for online teaching, and a course blueprint that is used in the initial stages of course development.

Contact: Ann Taylor, Director, atb3@psu.edu

Eberly College of Science

The Office of Digital Learning (ODL) helps faculty and students make the most of digital learning technology. We collaboratively design and build tools for any pedagogy. Dream it and we’ll build it.

WHAT WE DO: The Office of Digital Learning (ODL) supports the use of digital technologies in addition to online platforms for enhancing student learning and access in education.  The mission of ODL is to support Eberly College of Science faculty, students, and staff in leveraging technology in residential and online classrooms to increase student engagement, build community, and create open resources. In addition, the ODL team will provide faculty with consultation on the use of digital technologies for creating curriculum and curricular materials, transforming teaching practices, and applying novel methods of assessment. Our emphasis is on accessibility, personalization, high quality content and instruction, and consistent and stable learning infrastructure. We also encourage and facilitate cross-institution collaborations.

ODL is a resource for faculty: we stay current on the latest developments in digital educational technologies and pedagogical strategies. Schedule time in our One Button Studio, which is a hub of innovation and includes a lightboard. We work closely with the Center for Excellence in Science Education. We encourage and invite faculty interactions with our office, to work together to bring new and innovative digital technologies into their classrooms.

Please visit our website to learn more: odl.science.psu.edu

Contact: Melissa Hicks, Director mjs100@psu.edu

College of Engineering Office for Digital Learning

The Office for Digital Learning partners with faculty to design, deliver and develop world class learning experiences on campus and online. We are available to consult with any faculty member in the College of Engineering who wants to brainstorm new ideas for instruction, try new classroom technology, or learn about best practices in course design.

Our staff is comprised of experts in instructional design and multimedia production, and our facilities are available to help faculty develop engineering courses that meet the changing needs of today’s learners. Our instructional designers partner with faculty on every aspect of their course, from online delivery systems to multimedia, to learning activities and assessment. Our multimedia experts provide a range of multimedia production services, and we can partner with professionals across Penn State to help film, illustrate, or visualize content in engineering classes.

For world campus programs and courses, and select residential courses, we provide full-service design support using an Agile Design Model to capitalize on the efficiencies of the traditional engineering lecture capture model, while also introducing best practices in instructional design. We can also provide help with the Canvas Learning Management System, both for faculty who are just getting started or those who want to refine the system for their students.

Please visit our faculty studio site to learning more: http://sites.psu.edu/eodl/

Contact: Cathy Holsing, Director: cjh145@engr.psu.edu

College of Health and Human Development

The College of Health and Human Development develops online courses to be offered through the World Campus. This endeavor is spearheaded by the Outreach unit that includes learning design professionals. We currently offer approximately 80 courses and five programs, including the Master of Health Administration, the Master of Professional Studies in Nutritional Sciences, the Bachelor of Science in Biobehavioral Health, the Bachelor of Science in Health Policy and Administration, and the Bachelor of Science in Human Development and Family Studies. We also offer General Education courses from departments that are not represented in our programs. These include courses in Kinesiology, Communication Sciences Disorders, and Recreation Parks and Tourism Management. While most of the learning design group works on online courses, we do consult with faculty on off-site and student camp experiences. Our development team consists of instructional designers, multimedia specialists, instructional production specialists, and student interns. One ID is the lead for each course development or revision project and assists in coordinating the course team to complete projects within a two-semester timing window. We also view Universal Design to be the bedrock of how we approach design with an eye on making sure that I courses are accessible. Care is also taken to provide course consistency with regards to navigation and approach within programs. There is a strong effort to align with Quality Matters from the global perspective and the UX Testing Efforts within Penn State.

All courses offered through the college live in Canvas. Content may include content pages, syllabus, media, graphics, links, electronic reserves, videos created in-house, other embedded videos, PowerPoints, PDFs, etc. The syllabi are open to the public in Canvas and are placed on the World Campus course catalog so prospective students can view them. Canvas is used for quizzes, assignments, discussions, groups, peer reviews, surveys, and the gradebook. Master courses are set up for each online course. Each semester the master course is copied into the section for the semester. Course rollout is headed up by an Instructional Production Specialist with the goal of having semester courses populated so that faculty have ample time to personalize their course spaces.

Contact: Ravi Patel, rep129@psu.edu

College of IST

The Office of Learning Design (LD) within the College of Information Sciences and Technology (IST) creates and maintains a portfolio of over 270 sections per year in over 80 courses. LD has created courses and course modules for resident, distance, blended, undergraduate, graduate, certificate, and corporate audiences. LD currently offers five award-winning programs: Masters of Professional Studies (MPS) in Information Sciences, MPS in Homeland Security, MPS in Enterprise Architecture, BS in IST, and BS in SRA (Security and Risk Analysis). LD is currently working on several additional programs. Depending on the course, a combination of five Instructional Designers (ID), two Instructional Production Specialists (IPS), and up to twelve undergraduate student-interns or part-time wage employees are part of the design and development team. One ID is the lead for each course. This ID typically meets bi-weekly with faculty (SME) and follows a timeline for new course rollout or course revision. IDs also assist course committees–-consisting of a few faculty–-with developing course goals and topics in an ongoing effort to limit gaps or overlaps in the ever-changing content of the IST courses. LD works closely with the IST Education Strategy and Planning office, which coordinates hiring faculty, enrollment management, and admissions for the MPS program.

LD currently does not use a separate Content Management System (CMS), but instead places all content in Canvas. The reasoning behind this was that if one system (in contrast to two) worked for us, then why not go with it. Content may include content pages, syllabus, media, graphics, forms, links, peer evaluations, peer reviews, virtual labs, electronic reserves, lecture videos, other embedded video, PowerPoints, PDFs, etc. The syllabi are open to the public in Canvas and are placed on the World Campus course catalog so prospective students can view them. Canvas is used for quizzes, drop boxes, discussion forums, teaming space, peer evaluations, peer review, surveys, and the gradebook. Course Templates are set up for each online course. Each semester the Course Template is copied into each live section. Ongoing efforts are made to incorporate consistency across all IST online programs, especially in navigation, naming conventions, syllabus items and order, and similar assignments (e.g. introduction to the course). Resident Instruction (RI) instructors are able to copy all or part of the course template for use in their RI sections. Online Instructors use BigBlueButton (default in Canvas) or Blackboard Collaborate for online office hours, meetings, and presentations from distance students or guest speakers. Students also heavily use online meeting tools for team meetings. Most courses include real-world problems and team assignments. Some include hands-on virtual labs, particularly the cyber security courses.

IST Learning Design has been conducting IRB-approved research in the Canvas UX space in collaboration with other units. More here: https://sites.psu.edu/canvasux/

Office site: http://istlearningdesign.psu.edu/ or https://ist.psu.edu/directory/office/online_pro/learning_design

Contact: Amy Garbrick, agarbrick@ist.psu.edu

College of Liberal Arts

The mission of the Filippelli Institute for e-Education and Outreach in the College of the Liberal Arts is to support the teaching mission of the college by extending access to a liberal arts education to non-resident and resident students through World Campus offerings and UP-web courses.

The institute collaborates with partners in our academic departments and at the World Campus to create a robust portfolio of courses for both students in our degree programs and students taking our courses to round out their own studies. The college currently has three online Master’s degree programs, three graduate certificates, and sixteen online Bachelor’s degree programs and numerous online general education courses

The staff of the Filippelli Institute includes a director, assistant director, data analyst, education program associate, administrative staff assistant, six instructional designers, seven instructional design assistants, two multimedia specialists, and two faculty associates. All courses are offered through the Canvas learning management system and make use of its assessment, calendar, discussion and gradebook tools. Many courses also include videos created in-house as well as customized, interactive elements.

The Smeal College of Business

Smeal’s e-Learning Design and Innovation Group (eLDIG) is committed to excellence in teaching and learning, both in the online and face-to-face classroom. The eLDIG team works with instructors to design, develop, and enhance Smeal’s courses. eLDIG’s portfolio includes fully online courses offered via World Campus, hybrid courses (including a number of very-large-enrollment classes), and educational technology solutions and pedagogical support for resident instruction.

eLDIG stays current with emerging trends to deliver innovations in web technologies with a focus on improved student outcomes. In collaboration with Smeal’s multimedia team, we utilize our recording studios to capture course content for delivery. Course content is built in a customized CMS. Course content is displayed within Canvas, which allows the use of Canvas tools to streamline course delivery.

eLDIG keeps up-to-date on research that enables us to better our understanding of how students learn. We focus on how teaching and learning can be transformed in all delivery formats (face-to-face, hybrid, and online) while evaluating the success of teaching innovations to improve methods and approaches at Smeal through data-driven, iterative design. The team also provides a variety of services and faculty development opportunities to assist instructors with the processes of conceptualizing, designing, developing, delivering, and refining their courses and projects.

Contact: eldig@smeal.psu.edu

Additional Campus-based Resources


The Penn State Berks Center for Learning & Teaching (CLT) staff work with faculty in the design, development, and support of eLearning resources at the college. The team includes a director, instructional designer and instructional multimedia designer.

The Penn State Berks Teaching & Learning Innovation Grant Partnership Program (TLI) provides faculty with in-depth collaborative opportunities with the CLT team to identify innovative solutions to enhance Berks courses. Grants awards may include support from CLT staff and student interns, supplemental compensation, and/or additional resources such as hardware and software for the implementation of an innovative approach. Past Teaching & Learning Innovation grant projects have included:

  • Hybrid and online course development
  • Development of online multimedia-based resources (tutorials, interactive practice, instructional games)
  • Selection and implementation of instructional technologies

Berks faculty interested in developing hybrid and online courses are encouraged to enroll in the Berks eLearning Academy. The program includes a combination of five face-to-face sessions and supporting online activities designed to lead faculty through the process of designing and developing a hybrid or online course. Penn State Berks utilizes a local hybrid course development model that was presented to the Berks Faculty Senate during the 2009-2010 academic year. The Berks Hybrid Course Development Model adheres to the Penn State Quality Assurance Standards, as well as to elements of the Quality Matters Rubric.

The Berks Online Course Quality Grant Program was launched in 2016 to promote and support quality online course design and delivery. The program is offered on a continuous basis for new online courses as well as existing online courses to be substantially revised at Penn State Berks.

The Penn State Berks Learning Technologies Certificate program introduces new and existing faculty to emerging trends in eLearning and the avenues of support available through partnership with the Center for Learning & Teaching. The program consists of a series of five workshops on topics such as: hybrid and online course overview; instructional technologies including Canvas, clickers, and collaborative online tools; interactive educational resources; and tools for creating custom eLearning resources. To earn the certificate, faculty must attend four out of five sessions and complete a reflection piece. Faculty also have the option to attend individual workshops without completing the certificate.

Penn State Berks faculty utilize a wide range of instructional technologies, with Canvas serving as the learning management system. Through consultation with the CLT, Berks faculty often create custom multimedia-based course content (tutorials, interactive practice exercises, videos, screencasts, games, simulations, and podcasts), explore innovative uses of Canvas, and deploy a variety of instructional technology solutions.

Projects of the PSU Berks Center for Learning & Teaching can be viewed in the Center for Teaching & Learning portfolio.

Contact: Daonian Liu, DZL5300@psu.edu


A collaborative approach for course development is used by the Coordinator of Instructional Design at the Brandywine campus. The instructional designer consults with faculty to support online, hybrid and residential (RI) course development using Canvas as the learning management system. The Coordinator of Instructional Design also assist faculty in identifying and using educational technologies in their teaching and in student learning. Faculty development opportunities are organized and conducted by the instructional designer at the campus. The instructional designer also coordinates additional faculty development opportunities with other units within the University.

Contact: Matthew Bodek, mjb14@psu.edu


The Sr. Instructional Designer (ID) at the Penn State DuBois campus is charged with providing support the initiatives that advance the learning experiences and environment for students and faculty.  The faculty are assisted in producing projects that involve active student participation and collaboration through the use of emerging academic technologies. Instructional design support provides faculty with an educational partner who has the time and access to technologies to support to make measurable advances toward a contemporary learning environment regardless of delivery.

The ID aids faculty in the development in the use of instructional technology tools, and follows an instructional design process to meet the instructional goals of learning outcomes.  Projects can range from simply converting a targeted area of instruction to include alternate routes that will enhance active learning and integrate more student-centered, learning approaches, to full course development of educational materials for a course slated for widespread delivery.  The instructional designer is able to work with faculty from all disciplines, and can assist in the preparation of material to submit proposals and grants to organizations within Penn State and outside the university that support teaching and learning at PSU.

The ID is also the main point of contact for assistance with outcomes & program assessment, instructional design for all delivery methods, and is available to offer workshops on topics relative to instructional design and instructional technology.

Contact: Robin Martin Gill,  rlm14@psu.edu

Erie, The Behrend College

The Center for eLearning Initiatives serves primarily to support the development and maintenance of online and hybrid courses at Penn State Behrend. The CEI collaborates with academic programs, produces resources and practices, and facilitates faculty development opportunities geared toward improving e-learning at the college. Course projections over the next several semesters highlight an influx of online programs and projects designed to advance the college’s strategic goal of refining and expanding Behrend’s teaching role. These courses will be delivered via the World Campus, Penn State’s Digital Learning Cooperative, and residentially at Behrend. The CEI works to promote sound pedagogical practices that enhance teaching and learning in all e-learning formats offered at Behrend. Our team consists of two instructional designers, an instructional production specialist, and a web technologist. We utilize a number of tools to support content delivery, multimedia production, and to facilitate a variety of interaction types.

Contact: Jessica Resig, Director, jjr27@psu.edu

Great Valley

The Great Valley campus uses the Canvas platform for e-learning and integrates other tools within this platform – such as Storyline, Zoom, and videos created by our instructors using Camtasia or other video tools. The Instructional Designers collaborate with faculty to help identify new and useful educational technologies in order to create fully online and hybrid courses. Some faculty work independently to create courses, but most rely on support from the campus’ Instructional Design team. Great Valley also participates in VLN videoconferencing with the Berks and Navy Yard campuses.

Contact: Emily Addis, Manager of Instructional Design, emw8@psu.edu


The Center for Teaching Excellence at Penn State Harrisburg (PSH) provides online course design & development, faculty professional development, program assessment, administration of SRTEs, technology integration, and pedagogical consulting. The Center for Teaching Excellence team includes a director, instructional designers, an instructional production specialist, a multimedia specialist, and administrative support staff.

Penn State Harrisburg courses are designed and developed in Canvas. Faculty have many options in supporting their students in asynchronous learning opportunities through discussions, case studies, multimedia, and project-based assessments which provide rich and effective learning. We serve all levels of the Penn State Harrisburg degree programs including Associate, Undergraduate, and Graduate degree programs. We offer these online courses to both residential and virtual students through the Digital Learning Cooperative and the World Campus.

The Center for Teaching Excellence utilizes standardized instructional design methods and a process designed ensure high quality instruction. This includes courses created for our residential courses and those developed in partnership with the World Campus.

Please visit the Center’s website at http://sites.psu.edu/pshcenterforteachingexcellence/  to learn more about our services, request a consultation, or to view our resources.

Contact: Jennifer L. Keagy, Director, jlm394@psu.edu

Lehigh Valley

At the Lehigh Valley Campus, we have faculty who develop online and hybrid courses. This work is supported by an Instructional Designer who reports to both the DAA at the campus as well as to the manager of World Campus Instructional Design. This dual reporting structure gives the LV campus a close connection with the work being done by the World Campus.

The Lehigh Valley Campus is planning on increasing the number of online, hybrid, and videoconference classes it offers. In conjunction with our Academic Affairs committee, we are currently working on a hybrid course development process in order to ensure accurate communication and quality in hybrid course design.

Some of the software we use for online course development includes Camtasia, Adobe Connect, Snapz Pro X, iMovie, Visual Hub, Audacity, iTunes, Mpeg Stream Clip, Word, PowerPoint, and Jing. Online tools include ANGEL, VoiceThread, Picasa, YouTube, Screencast-O-Matic, and iTunes U. We also use iPods and flip video cameras as well as traditional video cameras, webcams and telephones for recording of online content. We also make use of Zamzar.com for file conversion and lynda.com for training and online instruction. We have also been using Blogs @ Penn State to create websites and blogs.

We participate in VLN videoconference programming and also work with our regional campuses on an Eastern Alliance videoconference collaborative.

The Media Commons manager works closely with Instructional Designer to support the technology and rich media content development for online and hybrid courses.

In the future, we hope to make use of Drupal and would like to see the University provide Drupal storage and server management for our campus. We also plan to make use of streaming server and Flash Media server services available from UP or Word Campus. It would also be helpful to be able to use Elluminate, just as the World Campus does for their synchronous collaboration online sessions. We also hope to take more advantage of green screen technology to enhance the video learning experience.

New Kensington

New Kensington primarily uses Canvas for content delivery, communication, and assessment in online learning.  Box, Sites at Penn State, Google, Zoom, and Yammer are increasingly being used to house online content, communicate and collaborate.  Faculty are using a variety of tools for lecture capture (including Zoom, Doceri, VoiceThread, some free online tools and purchased packages like Adobe Presenter) as well as the campus One-button Studio.  Important learning design support resources at New Kensington include the half-time IDS,  the traveling Media Commons consultant, other resources provided by Media Commons, lynda.psu.edu, Schreyer Institute, designers associated with Shared Programs, and the support and training opportunities provided by Teaching and Learning with Technology and IT Learning and Development.

Contact: Deborah Sillman, dys100@psu.edu


The Schuylkill campus uses Canvas to deliver online courses and content. Faculty also use other tools such as Zoom, Kaltura, Adobe and more to supplement the course resources.

Schuylkill is a member of Shared Programs where online and hybrid courses are delivered using a mix of Canvas, Zoom, and Polycom technologies to connect classrooms.

The campus has a Media Commons and a One Button Studio located in the library. Classrooms are set up in various learning space formats to enable faculty to deliver the best instruction. As classroom improvements move into the future, the classrooms are redesigned to offer a space to maximize learning.

Contact: Julie Meyer, jmm49@psu.edu


The Center for Instructional Design at PSU Worthington Scranton is dedicated to helping faculty, staff, and students with course design, consultation, instructional technology, or general technology questions.  Our faculty actively use Canvas, Zoom, Voicethread, Turnitin, Doceri, i>clicker, and more University-provided software and services for their courses.  The Instructional Design Center supports hybrid, “flipped,” and fully online courses for our campus.  Regular lunchtime “Brown Bag” training sessions are held, and individual consultations are always available.

The Center for Instructional Design hosts an annual Regional Faculty Development Day in spring, with participants from all over the Commonwealth.

Contact: Griff Lewis, grl13@psu.edu


The Wilkes-Barre campus uses Canvas for course content delivery, communication, and assessment in most of their courses (whether classroom based, hybrid, or completely online). Other tools, both integrated with and external to Canvas, are utilized as appropriate. Examples include Box, Sites, Zoom, Yammer, TurnItIn, and Kaltura, among others. In addition, Wilkes-Barre is a participant in shared programs, where online and hybrid courses are delivered using a mix of Canvas, Zoom, and Polycom technologies to connect classrooms across multiple Penn State campuses.

Penn State Wilkes-Barre has a half-time instructional designer who is available to assist faculty with course design, consultation, and instructional technology. A Faculty Development Series provides opportunities throughout the academic year to learn about and discuss pedagogical issues, including instructional technology advancements.

Contact: Susan Hales, seh17@psu.edu


Suzanne Shaffer, TLT Instructional Designer, supports resident instruction faculty with workshops, resources, and technology related to teaching and learning. Information about resources and training events happening at York can be found at this website http://sites.psu.edu/shafferpsy/. 

Contact: Suzanne Shaffer, scs15@psu.edu

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