Center for the Advancement of Faculty Excellence (CAFE)

Teaching in Different Formats

Basics of Teaching in Different Format

The principles of good teaching and good course design apply to any course format including face to face, hybrid, synchronous remote, asynchronous remote, or combination formats. Transparency, inclusion and accessibility, and active learning can be integrated into any course format.

We offer a framework of Design - Build - Teach - Improve for creating and enhancing courses in any format.


  1. Determine your course mode designation: Instruction Modes for Fall 2021 explains the differences between Face-to-Face, Synchronous, Asynchronous, Hybrid (synchronous or asynchronous), and HyFlex course formats at Cal Poly Pomona.
  2. Write or update course learning objectives: Learning objectives communicate to students what they are expected to learn, and also provide guidance for you, the instructor, for measuring and describing students' mastery of course content. Clear learning objectives contribute to transparency and fairness in a course.  Use the Revised Bloom’s Taxonomy of Measurable Verbs to help build clear and measurable learning objectives.
  3. Write an Aligned Course Plan: Ensure that your course activities and assessments really reflect what you want your students to learn by using this Course Plan Worksheet template.
  4. Plan Out the Interactions Your Students Will Experience: Include a combination of all three types of interaction (Student-Content, Student-Instructor, and Student-Student) in your course for an impactful learning experience.
  5. Consider Flipping Your Class: By having students review lecture material before coming to class you free up valuable in-class time for interaction, active learning, and problem-solving.  Learn more at the Flipped Learning Network 


  1. Use Canvas to Conduct Your Course: Canvas is Cal Poly Pomona’s official Learning Management System. Canvas helps students to stay connected with their instructors and classmates, and can be used to support any course format. At a bare minimum, instructors should use Canvas to share the course syllabus, communicate with students regularly via announcements or the Canvas in-box, and to keep student grades updated.
  2. Use the QM Course Template to Effectively Structure Your Canvas Course: Add the QM Course Template to your courses from the Canvas Commons by logging-in to Canvas and select the Commons button from the left menu, then search for “Cal Poly Pomona QM Template.”.  You can import the QM template from there.  Contact for help if needed.
  3. Use the Canvas Rich Content Editor to Build Rich Learning Experiences: The Rich Content Editor in Canvas makes it easy to share text, images, videos, documents, and more with your students.
  4. Use Kaltura and Kaltura Capture to Share and Create Video Content: Kaltura is the official video streaming service for Cal Poly Pomona.  View CAFE’s Kaltura, Technology Tutorial video to learn more.
  5. Ensure Your Course Materials Are Accessible: Visit CAFE’s Creating Accessible Instructional Materials page to learn more about making accessible Word documents, Powerpoints, PDFs, and websites. 


  1. Introduce Yourself and Your Course: Personalizing your online presence helps to build a relationship with your students, especially in remote courses.  One great way to do this is by providing an intro video.  View MediaVision’s Video Quality - Tips and Tricks to get started.
  2. Communicate Effectively with Your Students: Establishing clear guidelines for communication with your students can save a lot of time and stress.  Good communication also includes soliciting feedback from students on how the course is going.  We suggest giving a survey around the 3rd week of the term.  Good communication also entails providing timely feedback to students on their activities and assignments.
  3. Use Active Learning Techniques: This document of 200 Interactive Learning Techniques gives a lot of options for getting students engaged.  Pick a maximum of 3 techniques and try integrating them into your course.
  4. Use Authentic Assessments: At CPP we pride ourselves on “learn by doing,” so ensure that your assessments ask students to actually do something. Indiana University’s Authentic Assessment page gives a good primer on how to create assignments that match our polytechnic credo.
  5. Consider Best Practices: Check out UNLV’s Teach Online: Best Practices and Research for more strategies and techniques to improve your course. 

Top Hybrid Course Resources