Staff development for online learning and teaching

Alison Clapp, Lecturer

Graduate School 

Faculty of Medical Sciences

What did you do?

I developed an online module for staff development for online learning and teaching. It is designed to train clinical and research staff who had in the past often lectured to campus-based students but had never taught online before, or who had very little teaching experience at all.

Who is involved?

Mrs Alison Clapp, e-Learning lecturer and team member FMS Graduate School

How did you do it?

As part of my PhD studies into staff and student development for online teaching and learning I created an online module in the FMS Ngage content management system. It is available to all staff with a university login for online or blended learning development as a flexible approach for those who are time-poor.

The first few ‘weekly’ topics, designed to take around 2 hours per week, cover the theories behind online pedagogy as well as some practical tips for running online courses. The rest of the module covers areas such as duties of a module leader, copyright, plagiarism and how to use some of the technologies currently available.


Screenshot of the module. The section that is shown is the Student engagement and communication section. This includes a description of an activity asking students to reflect on the ways in which they feel comfortable participating in an online environments.

The module brings together information from other places in the university such as LTDS and the Blackboard team, and the rest of the e-learning team have provided input as well in illustrating and advice. As author I am happy to run it as a course, interacting with other staff as ‘students’, and I have done this for new module leads in FMS Graduate School. Staff can also use it to dip in and out of when they want information on pedagogy and technology, including tips for using online tools such as Feedback Studio, as ‘just in time’ reminders, all in one place.

The resource will be enlarged and updated as needed.

Why did you do it?

As part of the university’s EquATE project, I conducted an ethnography of the e-learning team which showed how much of our time was spent in training other staff, either in pedagogy or use of technology, often as ‘just-in-time’ training. I had previously developed online resources for this, but as part of my PhD I expanded them to provide something more comprehensive.

Does it work?

Feedback from staff taking the module as a course has been excellent.

Interested in finding out more?

Go to this link: and access using your university login.

Please do send feedback!

Contact details

Image of Alison Clapp 

Alison Clapp, FMS Graduate School





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