In the event that routine work and academic functions are disrupted due to an illness, natural disaster, emergency, or prolonged campus closure, you may find it necessary to work or teach a class off-campus. The following information is a suggested list of activities you can undertake BEFORE an emergency or prolonged closure.

Prepare to Work From Home

Working Remotely Readiness Assessment Checklist

Establish a home-based workstation that includes a/an:

  • Laptop or desktop computer
    two monitor setupA computer that has at least 8GB of ram to handle multiple applications — email, web browsing, etc. Having dual monitors at your desk can increase productivity and makes it easier to share applications when teaching live sessions in Collaborate Ultra
  • Webcam
    Many laptops come with an integrated webcam which is sufficient. Otherwise, USB webcams are a good alternative. The Logitech C920 is a 1080p high quality webcam that is a good choice for teaching.
  • Microphone
    Desk Microphone Headset
    Blue Snowball Logitech H540
    blue snowball mic
    Cost: $70

    Best quality

    No wire hanging from your head

    Cost: $59

    Average quality
    Comfortable to wear
    Will pick up your voice in a loud environment since a mic is close to your mouth


  • Internet Connection
    It is recommended to have at least a 20 Mbps download speed and a 5 Mbps upload speed, especially if you are teaching with Collaborate Ultra. A wi-fi connection is acceptable, but you may experience lag when accessing or participating within certain environments, depending upon the service you use.Take a speed test at to check your download and upload speed.

Establish virtual channels of communication with your colleagues through platforms such as:

Determine software to meet and chat online with colleagues through platforms such as:

Establish access to information (cloud storage) through platforms such as:

Download apps on mobile devices to support communication and course delivery:


Prepare to Teach From Home

Teaching Remotely Readiness Assessment Checklist

It is important to establish an online presence, channels of communication with your students, and an off-campus assessment strategy for your courses before a disruption occurs.

Establish an online instructor presence

I have a published Blackboard course for each of my courses with a current syllabus and course schedule posted

My syllabus contains a statement that pertains to inclement weather, emergency and campus closure

I have a way to distribute assignments to my students online

I know how to record audio or video materials for class and I know how to share these with my students

I have added Blackboard Collaborate Ultra to my course menu and can use this tool for office hours, live classes, and/or recording lectures

I have posted or know how to post course materials/readings in Blackboard

I have set up assignments/grading in Blackboard for each class

Establish channels of communication with your students

My students know my plan for communicating class information during a disruption

I know how to facilitate discussion with groups of students remotely

Students have a way to contact each other and collaborate online and are prepared to do so

I know how to hold synchronous online classes or office hours with students (e.g. using Blackboard Collaborate Ultra)

I have encouraged my students to install the SAFE RDC app for updates about closures/emergencies

I am prepared to record lectures or have pre-prepared a few lectures to post online if needed (e.g. using Blackboard Collaborate Ultra or other video development tools)

I have prepared low-stakes activities for my students to make sure they can access, listen to, and/or watch my lectures online and use technologies that may be required

I have encouraged my students to download the Blackboard app (IOS and Android ) to support their learning on mobile devices.

Establish an off-campus assessment strategy

I have set up or know how to create online assignment submissions for my class in Blackboard

I have created or know how to create online surveys, quizzes or exams in Blackboard

I know how to grade and provide feedback on work submitted online in Blackboard

I have set up my grade centre in Blackboard

I know how to set up and use Respondus Lockdown Browser and Monitor to administer secure online exams



The Centre for Teaching and Learning (CTL) is available to provide one-on-one or group support with using technology for teaching and learning. Resources are also available through the CTL’s website and the CTL Resources SharePoint site. Contact us by phone (403.356.4989) or by email (

For support with software and hardware issues or errors, contact IT Services by phone (403.342.3580) or by email ( Resources for Microsoft Office 365 are available through theLoop > IT Support > Office 365 and through the Microsoft Office Support website. | 403.356.4989 | Teaching Common – 913C | Find us on theLoop | Find us on Twitter and Facebook @ctlrdc
Updated April 30, 2020