Online Division
Mary Beth
Proposal Delivery to NYSED
As you may know, the Online Division will present information at the April 5th Quarterly Meeting in order to better prepare all college personnel for coming events and to provide comprehensive information.  As mentioned in her email in early March, President Karen Smith and online division Lead Mary Beth  delivered our proposals for fully online programs to New York State Education Department in Albany in March.  The programs proposed are Associate Degree in Business Administration – Management/Marketing and Bachelor in Business Administration.  We are expecting that our New York State liaisons will reach out to us in the near future to gain deeper knowledge regarding our programs and infrastructure for future online students.  Thank you to online team members Marie, Richard, Ruth and Christine L..  A special thank you to Joann M. for her steady guidance and invaluable input throughout the process.
Tools for Success
A mixed bag of other news includes the continued review of possible vendors for secure proctoring and student identity verification, electronic bookstore considerations, helpdesk piloting, Turnitin for grammar, syntax and plagiarism scanning for both students and faculty.  A process is being finalized to help instructors identify and suggest technology tools for use in the electronic classroom.  Kelly and team continue to plow through myriad CampusVue considerations and updates, which will effect fundamental online campus functioning.
One item of particular note, Atomic Learning, a source for online training and professional development, identified by faculty members Lorraine and Gary, will be adopted for student and faculty online academic success.  It will give us resources for assessing student technology readiness, as well as providing tutorials for helping fill those gaps, among many other rich resources.  Atomic Learning, coincidentally, has a resource which will help our college staff and faculty become experts in the APA Stylesheet, a goal planned for 2012.
In addition, the online division continues to pay particular attention to the first year experience of students both inside and outside of the classroom.  We are hoping to utilize Campus Toolkit, which, as you know, is an integral set of tools for ground student success and identification of student needs.  U-Lifeline is being adopted for online student counseling resources, and military member and veteran specific resources are also under review.
Community Awareness
A website homepage has been approved and is under development, and a community awareness plan is developed and is ready to launch upon accreditor approval.  Social networking is ready to launch, and an enhanced technology compliance agreement which includes guidelines for appropriate social networking among students and employees will be available for review soon.
LMS Update
A number of instructors have been the brave, enthusiastic early adopters of LMS Moodle including Greg and Paul, Janet, Alexa, Andrew and Paula.  Courses being offered this term include Principles of Marketing, Statistics, Anatomy of Leadership, Writing for Business Professionals, Project Management Essentials and Writing Effective Business Documents. Thanks to these faculty members, as well as to Richard, Bill R. and Melina of the online division for their ongoing support and training, and other instructors who are now diving into Moodle.
Administration and Compliance workgroup
Marie, Lead
February was definitely a busy and productive one for the Administration and Compliance work group:  Ethan attended a week-long meeting with the CampusVue representative to continue the configuration of the online database.  Dianne also attended these meetings but then visited NYC and obtained some additional information concerning online programs with federal funding.  Nancy P. met with the CampusVue representative to discuss potential configurations needed for future monitoring and reporting.   Jessica  has been monitoring the development of social media policies.  Christina C. has written a number of in-depth documents that relates to financial assistance to new students.  Marie completed the NYS online proposal binders with compliance documents.
Admissions and Marketing Workgroup
Mary B. is the new team lead for the group, and Joe Q. and Mary Ellen M. are joining this group as members.  Thanks to all.
Progress continues with the online admissions group as we push forward with our Talisma CRM project.  The new system is beginning to take shape as a result of much analyzing, brainstorming and planning on the part of the CW Talisma team.  Talisma should make a positive impact on the ability of the CW to serve prospective students as they make decisions about their education.
The Communication Center team has been growing as well, which anticipate plans for future development of the Communications Center to support online admissions activities, including visits to peer institutions.
Teaching & Learning Team
The Teaching & Learning group is preparing many documents in preparation for NYSED proposal and MSCHE visit.   One of the necessary documents related to online teaching is the Online Best Practices Document.  In order to have uniformity and direction for faculty who are teaching online courses, Paul, Dean of the E/S College has submitted the first draft for this handbook.  Some of the faculty related topics addressed in this document include:
§  Faculty Readiness for Teaching Online
§  Knowledge of Online Pedagogy
§  Assessing Student Performance and Engagement
§  Using Discussions and Facilitating Discussions
§  Collecting, Returning Assignments and Managing Group Assignments/Projects
§  Communicating and Housekeeping Throughout the Course
This handbook is intended to be used as a basis for establishing, delivering and evaluating quality online courses at The College of Westchester while assisting faculty to promote online courses to be as challenging, engaging and vigorous as the on-ground courses are at CW.
The FYE/Retention teams are working in smaller groups to accomplish their goals.  During the past month, these groups and individuals from the team have completed meetings on strategies for increasing retention, produced a draft of the hardware and software requirements, drafted a notification procedure for ADA accommodations for online students, and assisted in launching the first two online courses in Moodle, Statistics and Principles of Marketing.
E-Books and the Library Online
As most of you know, CW Library services are available in-person and online.  The Library website now displays a Meebo widget, allowing users to chat with a librarian in real time or to leave a message for a librarian when the queue is not being monitored.  Studies show that onsite users, especially in-Library users, use chat most when they want to ask a question, but don’t want to lose their seat in the Library.  Fortunately, in the coming months, we’ll get to test out this finding.
This fall, the online chat service will be in full force, accommodating all schools – Day, Evening, Saturday and the new Online College. Last month, the Library acquired NetLibrary, a collection of e-books that are now a part of the permanent collection at the CW Library.  NetLibrary books can be downloaded to select e-readers. Presently, we still subscribe to Books 24×7, a collection of e-books available through subscription only. The collection is used heavily by the networking students and a few textbooks were found available there as well.  Combined, both collections offer 26,400 e-books available right now to CW students.
The Library also has a handsome collection of e-databases than can be accessed onsite, remotely from home – and on your smartphone with your CW sign-on credentials.  Please stay tuned for more information about the Library’s online services.
Student Services
Maria G.
The team has been busy developing a number of important processes and identifying factors for student success, including an online student academic alert system which mirrors the adult student process, but is appropriate to the needs and schedule of the online student.  In addition, the development of document, Question and Answers Commonly Asked by Online Students, will empower students in the virtual experience.
The “teams of three” concept is being designed to support students in and outside of the classroom from the time they first inquire about CW through and beyond their graduation.   Teams of three refer to a cluster of staff that are in communication with each student, such as their success coach, academic advisor, and other CW individuals  at appropriate points in the student lifecycle.
Lastly, student services is playing an integral role, along with FYE and Admissions and Marketing workgroups, in developing a comprehensive Orientation process for new online students.