Distinguished Course Repository
What is the DCR?
Foundation: KSU faculty have developed a lot of courses in a variety of formats. Because of the pandemic, faculty were forced into teaching in the digital space, developing excellent courses in online and hybrid formats. There is a need to catalog, recognize, and provide access to these courses.
Purpose and Function: The Distinguished Course Repository (DCR) is a digital space for experienced faculty to share excellent course designs with their peers. Additionally, the DCR provides new and late-hire faculty access to high-quality course content, all in support of ongoing student success.
How to Use the DCR
You can access and create an account in KSU’s Distinguished Course Repository at https://digitalcommons.kennesaw.edu/dcr/ by using your KSU credentials.
The KSU DCR is organized like an online journal. From the Home page, learn about the DCR Journal, find out who is on the current Editorial Board, read the Policies, and consider the Course Preparation Guidelines.
Also, from this page, you can search the entire DCR for exemplary courses to copy using key terms. Keep in mind that you can even get great ideas for your courses by browsing courses outside of your discipline!
Why Submit to the DCR?
- Storage and Access: The DCR is a space to showcase Distinguished Courses developed in all modalities: online, hybrid, and face-to-face (F2F).
- Quality Assurance: These courses not only meet standards specified in college-level Digital Learning Policies for review and approval, but they also exceed them, scoring a “95” on the Quality Matters Standards for Higher Education Rubric.
- Students benefit from taking courses designated as “distinguished” as the designation itself indicates effectiveness and quality.
- Programs that choose to adopt a Distinguished Course template from the DCR can count on consistency across sections and prevent curriculum drift.
- Having a course accepted into the DCR speaks to the quality and significance in Teaching,
Supervision, and Mentoring for ARD and P&T decisions. A current emphasis of the USG
is student success!
- SoTL opportunities are inherent in the development, implementation, and analysis of learning analytics of Distinguished Courses.
- University-level service opportunities are inherent in contributing to the DCR by working as a peer reviewer and/or by supporting colleagues in their own development and submission of Distinguished Courses.
- Impact factors can be computed for courses.
- New faculty and last-minute-hires can use the DCR to identify course templates to utilize during the hectic time of preparing for their first semester teaching schedule, and perhaps be motivated to develop and submit their own course templates in the future.
- Having a course accepted into the DCR speaks to the quality and significance in Teaching, Supervision, and Mentoring for ARD and P&T decisions. A current emphasis of the USG is student success!
The Submission and Review Process
New Course Development:
- Read your college’s Digital Learning Policy carefully to determine specific college-level requirements for your course’s development approval and design.
- Access and review the Faculty Guidebook for Digital Teaching and Learning for links to support and tools.
- Explore the many opportunities for online course development support offered by Digital Learning Innovations.
- Consider working one-on-one with a DLI instructional designer for course development support to ensure that the course format is followed and required course components are included.
- Because your course will be evaluated using the Quality Matters Course Design Rubric, be sure to review it carefully before you begin and before you submit your course. A score of “95” is required for acceptance to the DCR.
- Log in to the DCR and click the link to Submit a Course. Be sure to read the requirements for submission.
- Complete the DCR Submission Form on the DCR website with the required information about you, additional authors, and your course.
- Request a D2L Course Shell from UITS (D2L Course Shell Request Form) and copy your course to the shell. Be sure to include the course’s D2L code. The D2L code can be found on your D2L home page underneath the name of your course.
- Add the DCR Librarian to your D2L course as an instructor. The current DCR Librarian’s username can be found on the Editorial Board page of the DCR. In the interest of study privacy, please do not add the DCR Librarian to an active course.
- Submit the course syllabus and the Facilitator’s Guide. There is a link to the Facilitator’s Guide in the Submission Form.
At least three reviewers will review the course. The DCR Librarian will contact the author with feedback and status of acceptance when the review is complete.
- Please consider the reviews along with any recommended revisions and respond to them using the Review Response form that will be provided by the DCR Editor.
- When complete, please send the form as an attachment to firstname.lastname@example.org
- After re-review, you will receive notification of planned publication.
Accessing and Copying a Course from the DCR
If, after reading about a course in KSU’s Distinguished Course Repository (DCR), you are interested in viewing it in D2L, please follow these instructions.
- Note the D2L course code from the course’s information provided in the DCR.
- Request access by sending the D2L course code in an email to the DCR Librarian at email@example.com
- The DCR Librarian will add you as an instructor to the course within 48 hours. If you do not have access after 48 hours, please contact the DCR Librarian.
- View the course, including the Facilitator’s Guide that has been provided by the course author. You may export the D2L course by following the instructions here.
- While you may modify the course in ways to suit your semester context and student body (due dates, minor assignments, textbooks, additional resources, etc.), the integrity of the course and its adherence to a design that meets Quality Matters Standards must be maintained. Modifying the course more than 20% from the current approved version requires new review and approval, beginning at the college level. For questions about your college’s Digital Learning Policy, please refer to the Digital Learning website and/or contact your college’s representative on the Digital Learning Advisory Committee.
You will have access for at least one year, and then your username will be removed from the D2L course. If you require an extended access time, or want access again, please email the DCR Librarian at firstname.lastname@example.org
Deadlines and Publication (Volumes, Issues)
Volumes of the DCR are published at the beginning of each academic year, and each volume is comprised of two issues, one for each semester. Deadline for the fall semester issue is October 15th, and for the spring issue is March 15th.