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Archive for September 12th, 2023


RSI in the Classroom Video Series

The ecourses committee this year is focused on getting GCC online faculty on board with Regular and Substantive Interaction (RSI). The U.S. Department of Education requires that all online courses for which students receive federal financial aid involve “regular and substantive interaction between students and instructors.”

What that means is online courses must demonstrate that:

Instructors engage in at least two forms of substantive interaction during each course. That interaction should be regular, scheduled, predictable, and focused on the course subject. In other words, students should know when they can expect to engage with their instructor, and those opportunities for engagement should happen throughout the entire academic term.

We created a video series to show faculty what that might look like in an online course. These are just examples and not necessarily what every faculty should or can do. It’s up to each faculty member to decide which two forms of substantive interaction work best for their course. What works for me, may not be feasible for you.

Below are the first 3 episodes of the video series. Each week we will be adding to the series and you can check for new episodes here:

RSI in the Classroom, Ep. 1 Office Hours

Office hours can be considered a form of regular and substantive interaction in online courses, but it depends on how they are conducted and how they contribute to the overall learning experience. Learn more here:

RSI in the Classroom, Ep. 2 Facilitating Discussion

To facilitate a group discussion regarding the content of a course or competency as regular and substantive interaction, you can start by setting clear expectations for participation and encouraging all members to contribute. You can also use open-ended questions to spark conversation and encourage critical thinking. Additionally, it may be helpful to establish ground rules for respectful communication and active listening. Here are a few examples to show you what that might look like:

RSI in the Classroom, Ep. 3 Assessment & Providing Feedback

Regular and substantive interaction refers to the requirement for online instructors to have ongoing and meaningful engagement with their students. Assessing or providing feedback on a student’s coursework is one way to meet this requirement, as it demonstrates a level of involvement in the student’s learning process. This interaction is a fundamental part of the teaching and learning process and plays a crucial role in the student’s academic development. See some examples here: