Online Course Development Process

The Online Course Development Process outlined below is designed to provide guidance and support to Fitchburg State University faculty who are embarking on developing a new online course. 

Our course development process offers a comprehensive framework that empowers faculty members to design and deliver high-quality online courses. From proposal submission to final review and approval, we provide resources, consultations, and a collaborative environment to ensure your course meets the highest standards of excellence. 

  1. Submit the Online Course Development Proposal Form for approval. This form is reviewed by the appropriate stakeholders: the Academic Department or Program Chair, the Dean of the School of Graduate, Online, and Continuing Education, and the Director of Digital Learning.
  2. Consultation with the Digital Learning Team: Reach out to the Director of Digital Learning, Ralph Fasano to discuss your course development plan. This consultation includes reviewing the guiding principles for online course development, Course Design Rubric, Instructor Blackboard Online Checklist (PDF) creating a deliverable schedule, and accessing the latest course design templates. You can also request a development course shell during this stage.
  3. Course Development:  During this phase, the faculty developer collaborates with the Digital Learning Team for instructional design support and guidance on best practices for online course design and facilitation. On average, it takes approximately 3-6 months to complete a course development project.
  4. Submission of Final Course for Review. Submit your finalized course to the Director of Digital Learning for feedback and recommendations. The course must be fully developed and ready for review at a minimum of 4 weeks prior to the course start date. At this point in time, the developer must submit, with appropriate chair(s) signatures, paperwork for review of the completed course. The form is submitted to the Director of Digital Learning, Ralph Fasano The form can be accessed here: Final Approval Form (PDF). Fitchburg State faculty, please complete and attach the Feedback Form (PDF).
  5. The Director of Digital Learning reviews the course and makes suggestions using the Course Design Rubric (PDF). The developer will grant access to the appropriate parties for a final review. The course must ultimately be approved by the Director of Digital Learning, the Academic Department or Program Chair, and the Dean of the School of Graduate, Online, and Continuing Education.

Fitchburg State University is committed to supporting your course development efforts and fostering a culture of continuous improvement. Our aim is to provide you with the resources, expertise, and opportunities to develop online learning experiences that engage and inspire learners.  

Learn more about online learning

Complete Fitchburg State’s Online Learning Micro-Credential by earning 3 digital badges .

Contact Ralph Fasano, Director of Digital Learning to enroll.

Foundations of Online Learning, Facilitating Online Courses, Innovations in Online Learning