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ATS Newsletter May 2019

Published May 29, 2019

training faculty online course development

How Instructional Designers and Faculty Partner for Course Development

While faculty are subject matter experts and know what works best in the classroom, Instructional Designers (IDs) are learning technology experts who understand the tools and methodology for delivering content in an online or hybrid course environment.  Much of the work of an ID includes making sure that activities and assessments are aligned with your course objectives. 

Whether you’re developing new online/hybrid courses or seeking enhancements to existing courses, our Instructional Designers are available to partner with you in this process by:

  • Providing training on BeachBoard.
  • Reviewing online courses for quality assurance standards.
  • Analyzing student metrics to understand learning behaviors
  • Exploring technologies and methodologies to help you achieve course objectives.

Faculty and instructional designers share a common goal: to create the best learning environment for student success.  Make an appointment for a consultation with an ATS Instructional Designer at or call 5-TECH (8324).

LinkedIn Learning with Becomes LinkedIn Learning

On June 10th, existing services available via CSULB Single-Sign-On (SSO) will upgrade to LinkedIn Learning. The new LinkedIn Learning will continue to provide the same online educational platform with over 10,000 business, technology, and creative skills development courses for in-depth instruction and/or “quick hit” microlearning.

What does this mean for you?

  • The chiclet previously available via SSO will become a LinkedIn Learning chiclet.
  • Upon your first login to the LinkedIn Learning environment, you may be asked to pair your account with an existing LinkedIn account. This is optional.
  • If you have existing links or resources in your course you will want to double-check to ensure they work after the transition. All resources should still be available, but may reside at a different link.

new students walking through campus

SOAR Online Wins Awards

Incoming freshmen and transfer students will soon arrive for their day of SOAR, the Student Orientation, Advising and Registration program.  A relatively new component of SOAR includes an online course which not only introduces students to key resources, but also familiarizes them with the BeachBoard platform before classes begin. 

SOAR Online was initially developed in 2016 through a collaboration between Instructional Designers in Academic Technology Services and staff in Student Affairs. Last year, the SOAR Online team earned two awards for excellence:

We’re proud of our talented instructional design team for contributing to student success through their online course development expertise and partnerships with campus staff. 

Instructional Designers can assist you at any phase of course development.  Contact us for a consultation at call 5-TECH (8324).


beachboard tips for instructors

Use Alt-Text on Images For Low Vision Students

Making BeachBoard course content accessible ensures that all students have equal opportunities to learn. Adding alternative text (alt-text) to digital images is one way to help students with low vision to gather meaning in context and participate more fully with the course material. BeachBoard automatically prompts users to include alternative text (alt-text) when adding new images to a page.

Alternative Text Best Practices

  1. Provide a succinct description of the image contents when prompted in BeachBoard; alt-text should not be more than 80 characters.
  2. If the image contains text, the alternative text should contain the same text.
  3. If the image is within a link, it should provide information about the page it is linking too. 
  4. Alt-text should NOT include the words "image of" or "photo of"

To learn more about alt-text and other accessibility tips, see WebAIM’s Alternative Text Tutorial.