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Support for Online Challenges: Labs, Group Work, and Class Discussions

Posted by on Monday, March 28, 2022 in Uncategorized.

In a recent article, Inside Higher Ed described the results of a new survey highlighting a few of the biggest challenges instructors have faced during remote and online teaching over the last two years.

You can find the article here:


According to this survey, labs, group work, and class discussions have been the least successful learning experiences for students. Over the last two years here at the CFT, we have been putting together resources to address just these types of assignments. 

If you need ideas for managing online labs, try this guide, Teaching Labs Remotely, by Cynthia Brame, or this guide, Digital Labs and Simulations, contributed by Steve Baskauf, Cynthia Brame, Lily Claiborne, Denise Due-Goodwin, Erika Grundstrom, Adam List, Sherry Thomas, Susan Verberne-Sutton, and Mark Woelfle. 

If you are looking for support with online group work, check out the guide Project-based and Dynamic Collaborative Learning by Julaine Fowlin with contributions from Bobby Bodenheimer, Corbotte Doyle, and Heather Fedesco on the Vanderbilt Center for Teaching Course Development Resources (CDR) Site. 

Also on the CDR, we have materials for building great online discussions! Check out this guide on Discussion Boards for help effectively using the Discussions tool in Brightspace. We also have a great guide on Interacting Asynchronously that can help you think through alternative ways of fostering interaction outside of or instead of online discussions. 

If you have questions about any of the tools available at Vanderbilt to help you meet the challenges on teaching with technology whether in person or online, reach out to us at


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