eVersity Receives Another International Blackboard Exemplary Course Award

A University of Arkansas System eVersity instructional design and faculty duo were one of a small handful of educators worldwide recently honored with an international Blackboard Exemplary Course Program (ECP) Award.

Ramesh Muthukumarana, senior instructional designer at eVersity, and Caitlin Howe, an eVersity faculty member, teamed up to win the award. This is the second time Muthukumarana has been recognized with the international award since eVersity’s launch in 2015. The ECP Award recognizes faculty and course designers from schools, colleges and universities around the world who develop engaging and innovative courses that represent the best in technology and learning.

“At the core of our approach to instruction is the conviction that online learning should be innovative, drive student engagement, help students excel and stimulate learning,” said Michael Moore, Ph.D., chief academic/operating officer at eVersity. “I’m very proud that we’ve been able to utilize the strengths of our instructional design team and faculty from across the UA System to consistently win major awards in course design. The high-quality of our courses is reflected and measured in how satisfied our students are and how successfully they perform, which are both off the charts.”

Muthukumarana and Howe were selected as winners for their course, “Introduction to Public Health Principles and Practices,” which is a survey course that is an introduction to basic and contemporary issues of public health that also provides an overview of the diverse areas of public health practice.

The course demonstrated excellence in each of the award’s four areas:

1.) Course Design: The elements of instructional design, such as its structure, learning objectives, and instructional strategies.

2) Interaction and Collaboration: The type and amount of interaction and collaboration facilitated within an online environment.

3.) Assessment: The quality and type of student assessments and instructional activities designed to measure progress toward learning outcomes, provide feedback to students and instructors, and/or enable grading or evaluation.

4.) Learner Support: The resources made available to students either within or external to the digital course environment.

“I am pleased to welcome Muthukumarana and Howe to the ECP Award family,” said Lee Blakemore, chief client officer & president at Blackboard. “Courses recognized by the program are seen by their peers as setting the bar for engaging learners and maximizing academic outcomes for students. We’re proud to honor instructors who work tirelessly to improve their practice and students’ online learning experience.”

For nearly two-decades, the ECP Award has honored instructors and course designers whose courses demonstrate best practices within the framework of Course Design, Interaction and Collaboration, Assessment, and Learner Support. Thousands of instructors, teachers, and designers have used the ECP Award criteria to evaluate and improve their courses with recognized best practices. To be considered for the honor, applicants must use Blackboard Learn or Blackboard Open LMS learning management systems. Submitted courses are evaluated by other course developers, instructional designers, teachers, and professors using the ECP Award Rubric.

To learn more about the Exemplary Course Program, visit here.

About The University of Arkansas System eVersity: The University of Arkansas System eVersity is a 100 percent-online institution within the UA System that uses faculty from sister institutions and its own instructional design team to offer innovative, high-quality, accessible, workplace-relevant and affordable courses and degree programs. It offers two- and four-year degrees, along with credentials and certificates in five degree programs: healthcare management, criminal justice, business, information technology and university studies. Students take just one class at a time, which start every seven weeks – seven annual start dates. For more information and to quickly apply for free, visit eVersity.edu.

About Blackboard Inc.: Our mission is to partner w ith the global education community to enable learner and institutional success, leveraging innovative technologies and services. With an unmatched understanding of the world of the learner, the most comprehensive student-success solutions, and the greatest capacity for innovation, Blackboard is education’s partner in change.