Table of contents

Course description
Learning outcomes
Course structure
Time commitment
Privacy and confidentiality
About FLO

Course description 

Facilitating Learning Online (FLO) - Fundamentals is a five-week online course that is focused on developing teaching skills for asynchronous online learning. Over the course of the five weeks, you will learn strategies to create active learning environments online for your students, facilitate or co-facilitate a pre-designed learning activity, and receive feedback from your peers. FLO Fundamentals gives you the opportunity to develop your online facilitation skills with other new and experienced facilitators. This workshop is designed for core faculty, associate faculty, and staff in facilitation or support roles of online or blended courses, regardless of experience level.

Learning outcomes

Learning outcomes

Assessment criteria


1. Build and sustain online communities


  • Defines the role of facilitation in an online learning environment
  • Recognizes best practices for facilitating learning online
  • Recognizes the relationship between community, presence, and effective learning, especially as they relate to learning in online environments
  • Relates the "Community of Inquiry" model to online learning communities
  • Describes specific teaching practices for the online context that speak to identified pedagogical values

Weeks 1, 2, & 4

2.  Support diverse learners online


  • Reflects on the role of the instructor in facilitating online discussion forums
  • Recognizes the role of values in teaching practices
  • Identifies the relationship between values, intentions, and teaching practices, specifically those that relate to facilitating learning online
  • Identifies own core pedagogical values


Weeks 3 & 4

3. Facilitate collaborative and individual learning


  • Recognizes the opportunities, limitations, and challenges of the discussion forum in online learning environments
  • Identifies specific facilitation strategies that support effective learning in online discussion forums
  • Reflects on key experiences that have informed their teaching, specifically in online learning contexts

Weeks 3 & 5

4. Provide effective feedback and assessment


  • Reflects on strategies for engaging learners in an online learning community
  • Selects innovative forum-based learning activities
  • Recognizes the role of reflection in teaching practice


Weeks 2, 3, & 5

5. Manage the online course environment


  • Differentiates distinguishing features of the online learning environment/experience
  • Creates an inventory of key strategies for facilitating learning online
  • Recognizes facilitation strategies that develop social and teaching presence
  • Creates teaching philosophy, specifically as it pertains to facilitating learning online

Weeks 1 & 2

Course structure 

There are five learning units in this course (1 unit per week for a total of five weeks). Learning activities will include watching videos, reading pages or articles, completing Moodle Choice polls and Lessons, working collaboratively using Cloud-based tools such as Google docs and Padlet, and posting and replying to questions in forums, etc.

With the exception of week 1, each week of FLO will follow the same basic structure:

  • Monday – Thursday (Peer-facilitated learning activities): In this half of the week, through the facilitation of a team of your peers, you will complete various learning activities including reading text, watching videos, working collaboratively, completing polls, etc. To learn more about the peer-facilitation component of the course, please review the Peer facilitation handbook. In addition, you will share reflections in a learning journal and post comments in response to the journal entries of others. See your learning journal in the Learning Journals section for specific information.
  • Friday – Sunday (Reflection and feedback activities): In the second half of the week, you will share your feedback and reflections of the peer facilitated learning by completing a weekly poll and participating in a Padlet discussion.  

Time commitment 

FLO is a participatory and cohort-based course. To derive maximum benefit, and to be fair and supportive to your colleagues, you need to participate fully in online activities and discussions.

FLO requires commitment on your part. We recommend that you set aside 5 - 10 hours per week for FLO activities. You can expect to spend more time during the week you are facilitating. Please plan to log into the course several times each week, ideally daily. 

If, for some reason (work, travel, etc.), you will be without online access for a day or two, please let all FLO participants know in advance by posting in the Open forum. It is important that you arrange to meet your participation requirements before or immediately after you get back online. (Note: If you plan to be away from the course for a week or more due to a work or personal commitment, please connect with the FLO facilitators ASAP to discuss whether this is the right time for you to take this course.)

Privacy and confidentiality 

Trust is an essential part of a successful FLO. Our learning relies on the exchange of honest, constructive feedback, and we need to agree that our online learning environment will be private and confidential. Always seek permission to share content posted by participants.

This FLO offering is accessible by the workshop participants, facilitators, and occasionally website administrators who we may call upon to assist with technical issues and editing. You will continue to have access to the workshop content and participants' contributions after the end date, and for as long as this website is supported.

About FLO 

The materials and design of this workshop build on the open educational resource that has been available in various iterations through Royal Roads University (RRU) since 2005. The design is based on the Instructional Skills Workshop in that activities provide an authentic environment for participants to learn about and practice skills related to facilitating learning.

Important differences between the face-to-face ISW and the FLO:

  • FLO is about online facilitation, and learning, whereas the ISW is about teaching in face-to-face settings.
  • The topics you will be facilitating in FLO are about teaching and learning, whereas ISW lessons are on any topic.

A brief history of FLO and its evolution:

  • In September 2013, the course was implemented at  BCcampus - SCoPE for the first time.
  • In February 2015, the name of the course changed from Instructional Skills Workshop Online (ISWO) to Facilitating Learning Online (FLO), to more closely reflect the focus on online facilitation.
  • In February 2016, FLO-FDO facilitators participated in a 2 day Design Sprint to integrate a new design and delivery model for FLO, incorporating feedback from participants and graduates of Facilitating Learning Online (FLO) and Facilitator Development Online (FDO) courses. The updated version of FLO deepened the emphasis on facilitation and collaborative learning and scaffolded the team facilitation activities more effectively.
  • In September 2017, the FLO-Fundamentals diversity section was revised to reflect current themes, issues, and facilitation recommendations in the related online learning and diversity literature.
  • In March 2020, the RRU version of FLO was redesigned to reflect new best practices in online facilitation and with updated readings and resources. Theme topics were revised to avoid duplication with new faculty development offerings available through CTET at RRU. 

Last modified: Friday, 14 August 2020, 12:54 PM