Facilitating the Course

After you review all of the facilitator notes, read the fifteen email messages (fourteen lessons and an evaluation) line by line to ensure that the content is appropriate to your audience. You can use the lessons as they are or customize portions of the lessons to include information specific to your campus.

Create a list of participant email addresses in a listserv or other automated discussion list for the course, or simply create an address list in your own email program. Use the list to distribute the fifteen lesson and evaluation email messages and facilitate discussion with participants. If you decide to use a discussion list, set it up with the appropriate technical staff at your campus, learn how it works, and subscribe all of the participants. You will need to set up a new list of participants each time you run the course.

Below are specific guidelines for conducting your course.

  1. Regardless of whether you choose to use an automated tool (e.g., a listserv) or your own email features to set up a list of participant email addresses, give participants directions on how to use the selected communication method.
  2. Consider sending the group an email message that lists all participant email addresses, including your own, to encourage ongoing communication. You may also send a participant summary (e.g., the number of participants and the departments represented in the course), to encourage discussion. This message could include specific content information regarding campus services for students with disabilities as well.
  3. During delivery of the course, if you receive a message from a participant addressed only to you that should be viewed by all participants, forward the message to all participants. Similarly, if a message is sent to the list that is directed only to you, respond only to the individual sending the message.
  4. Set an approximate schedule for sending out email lessons. For example, you could send a lesson each Tuesday and Thursday, or you could space lessons according to interests and discussion of topics. For example, send the Access 1: Introduction message; during the discussion that follows, send a biography about yourself, and encourage others to contribute to the discussion; then, after several days of discussion, send the next lesson. It is not necessary for you to respond to all discussion messages, but participate enough to keep the conversation going. Continue in this manner through lesson 14. Completion of the course in six to eight weeks is a reasonable goal.
  5. To create an email message, copy all of the text from the web page link and paste it into an email message. Put the title of the lesson (e.g., Access 1: Introduction) as the subject line. Then send the lesson to your group of participants.
  6. After sending Access 13: Resources, send a message that summarizes resources, policies, and contact information for students with disabilities on your campus.
  7. At the start of the Access 14: Conclusion, thank your participants for their involvement, and remind them about the end date or continuation of the discussion list, as applicable. Inform them of the importance of swiftly completing and sending the course evaluation. Send the course evaluation as the fifteenth message.

Tell participants that the list will remain open, or that it will be closed as of a certain date. At the end of the course, you may want to ask participants if they wish to remain on the list during the next offering of the course, or perhaps you will want to use the list as a means for the participants to keep in touch with one another. Keeping the list open provides many possibilities for continued awareness building on your campus, but it does create work for the facilitator of the list.