instructional continuity

ETL's team of academic technologies and instructional designers have prepared some helpful tips to keep your class on schedule when you can’t meet in person.

UAH provides an array of tools that allow faculty to continue teaching remotely. These tools can also be used to continue hosting office hours and regularly scheduled meetings. While the methods listed below are helpful, the overarching principles for maintaining continuity of instruction for our students are cooperation, flexibility, and communication.

All courses have an associated site in Canvas, UAH’s learning management system (LMS). Even if you don’t use Canvas regularly, it can help you in the event of class cancellations, simply by providing a secure, easily-accessible place for your students to access materials and communicate with each other.

Below you'll find information about the tools available for UAH faculty to teach remotely.  If you want to receive instruction on any of these tools, please contact or call 256-824-3333. 

Quick Links

Tips for Faculty and Staff Working Remotely

Tips for Teaching Remotely

Getting Help

Tips for Faculty and Staff Working Remotely

  • Use your UAH email account to conduct your regular administrative communications.
  • Forward your office phone in order to continue receiving calls on a phone of your choice.
  • Meet online via Zoom. Zoom allows you to meet with groups of up to 300 participants and allows you to share presentations and files in real time. Zoom has a built-in recording feature for participants who cannot attend the meeting.
  • Google Hangouts provides Meet, up to 250 participants (until July 1, 2020), video, voice, chat and screen share. Meetings created by people at UAH will include dial-in phone numbers and PINs. Free for non-international calls.
  • Access your UAH voicemail from off-campus.
  • You can use Duo two-factor authentication without an internet connection if you have the app downloaded to your smartphone. For more information, see the “Passcodes” section on the UAH Duo site.
  • Some UAH systems require the user to establish a Virtual Private Network (VPN) connection before accessing from off-campus. Instructions on how to download and install Pulse Connect Secure VPN software are available on Chargerware.
  • Use Google Drive to store your files in the cloud so they can be accessed from anywhere. Be sure to login with your UAH ChargerID.
  • Hold a conference call using UAH’s conference calling service, Conference Now.
  • Keep a printed copy of all the phone numbers for all faculty and staff in your department at home.
  • Back up your desktop files up to Code42 for Enterprise. You can access files that you backed up to the cloud if your desktop becomes unavailable. 

Tips for Teaching Remotely



Canvas is the easiest way to stay in touch with your students and update them on how you will manage your course. There are a variety of communication tools within the system. If you don't see these tools on your course navigation, you can enable them in course Settings.

  • Announcements allow you to post course messages that broadcast to all users in that course. Announcements appear at the top of the course page when a user visits the course. Instructions for posting an announcement can be found here.
  • Inbox is a messaging system built into Canvas which allows you to communicate with other Canvas users, similar to an email system. Instructions for using the Inbox in Canvas can be found here.
  • Discussions feature allows for asynchronous, threaded course communications, much like an internet message board. Instructions for starting a discussion in your course can be found here.


In the event that Canvas is not available, Google has several helpful communication tools:

  • Your UAH Gmail account may be used to communicate and share content with students in the event that you are unable to do so via Canvas.
  • Google Hangouts allows you to chat with students either in voice only or video formats. You can also share files through the messaging. For this resource, you do have to invite each participant individually.




  • Your UAH Google account may be used to communicate and share content with students in the event that you are unable to do so via Canvas. Google Drive provides cloud storage and content can be shared with other users easily.


UAH supports technologies that can help you enhance online course environments. When determining how to decide which tool to use the first question to ask yourself is, "What am I trying to accomplish?" To help you choose the correct tool for your needs, we’ve provided a side-by-side comparison of Panopto and Zoom. Both tools can be easily accessed from your Canvas course.


  • Best use: web conferences or synchronous class meetings, presentations requiring multiple hosts, and screen sharing.
  • Commonly used for: hybrid courses; small group meetings; remote guest speakers for your class or meeting; instructor office hours.
  • Learn more: Faculty and student training courses are available for Zoom.


  • Best use: Recording lectures for asynchronous classes. You can record audio, webcam, PowerPoint slides, and your computer screen. The recording will automatically be uploaded to your Canvas course. As viewers, students can take notes, place bookmarks, and comment on your recording. 
  • Commonly used for: Presentations that include Powerpoint slides or other desktop applications.
  • Learn more: Faculty and student training courses are available for Zoom.
I want to...
Interact with my class during a lecture x  
Record a Lecture that students can access at any time   x
Use a whiteboard to draw out concepts (e.g. math problems) x x
Save my lectures for future use  



Reference the Updates to Grading for Spring 2020 and FAQs Regarding Grading Changes for information about grading policy modifications in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

UAH has several tools that can help you give with assessments. These include Canvas features to build exams and to proctor them. As you plan an online exam, remember that you may need to re-evaluate your planned activity and adapt to the online tools that are available.

To help you determine how to best give your exam online, we've broken it down into three steps:

Step 1 - Determine the best format for your assessment

If you have already written an exam, review your materials and determine the assessment format that would best suit your exam. Use the below table to help you make the decision that works best for you course.


Multiple Question Types Exams
Essay Exams
Group or Oral Presentations
Does your exam include multiple choice, T/F, fill-in-the-blank, or essay questions?
Does your exam include an essay paper or other type of long-form written document?
Does your exam include group or oral presentations?
Use Canvas Quizzes Use Canvas or Turnitin Assignments

Presentation files: Use Canvas Assignments

Live presentations: Use Zoom

Learn how to use Canvas Quizzes

Learn how to make a Canvas Assignment.

Learn how to make a Turnitin Assignment.

Learn how to use Canvas Assignments.

Learn how to use Zoom.

Please Note

If an instructor chooses to offer an exam online, students with accessibility accommodations may need extra time to complete the exam. Learn how to give extra time to students on timed quizzes in Canvas.

Step 2 - Determine your assessment security needs (Optional)

Security can be a challenge when administering assessments online. Keep in mind that the way you design your assessment can be as impactful as the proctoring solutions you put in place to maintain academic integrity. Consider open book/open note exams with questions that engage higher order thinking. If you must use technology to heighten assessment security, please review the options below:

Step 3 - Distribute grades using the Canvas Gradebook

  • Access Grades on the Canvas course menu to enter grades directly in the Gradebook.
  • Use SpeedGrader to view submissions and provide feedback in the form of annotations, rubrics, and/or comments.
  • Turnitin assignments have their own grading interface that allows instructors to view similarity scores, provide feedback, and make annotations.

Getting Help

  • The OIT Help Desk is able to provide phone support 24/7 through a partnership with Blackboard Student Services. If you have issues logging into a Single-Sign-On (SSO) account with your ChargerID, resetting your password, or any other IT related issue email or call 256-824-3333.
  • For assistance with Canvas, help is available 24/7 for all faculty and students within Canvas by clicking the “Help” icon or by calling 833-519-8478 (faculty support) or 844-219-5802 (student support). You may also review UAH’s Canvas Training and Resources.
  • For assistance with Panopto, help is available 24/7 for all faculty and students. To contact Panopto Support during business hours (weekdays from 7 am to 7 pm), call 855-726-6786, extension 443. After hours and weekends, call 855-765-2341. For non-urgent Panopto support, you may email Please be sure to send your request from your UAH email address. You may also review UAH’s Panopto Training and Resources.
  • For assistance with Turnitin or Zoom, visit UAH’s resource guides for Turnitin and Zoom, or email