Scheduled projects are one of two approaches faculty can choose from when working with CEL in preparation to teach online. Each Spring CEL will formally invite all faculties and affiliated and federated institutions to submit project proposals for the upcoming academic year. Proposed projects may include:

  • development of a new fully online course, complete re-development of an existing online course, or significant revisions to an existing online course; 
  • conversion of a remote teaching course into a fully online course; or 
  • development of stand-alone online learning components (e.g., for a blended course). 

CEL evaluates submitted proposals in terms of scope and readiness. Only project proposals that are in a good state of readiness before the start of their scheduled development period will be accepted. 

The development work for selected projects will run from either September to August (Batch A) or from January to December (Batch B). Faculties will be asked to distribute their project allocations equally across these two timelines. Smaller projects may be completed in a shorter span of time but will still need to go through the proposal process.

For a new course or the redevelopment of an existing online course, a standardized project timeline and associated milestones apply. These are briefly described on our Creating an Online Course page. Timelines for scheduled projects that are not full courses will be outlined at the beginning of those projects.

Scheduled Projects FAQs

When is my proposal due?  

CEL’s intake process for scheduled projects occurs each spring. The information collected in each proposal is separated into two sections:

Section 1 (to be completed by the Dean’s office) requests basic information about the project, including stakeholders and approvals. This is due by May 31, 2021.

Section 2 (to be completed by course author) requests information about the planned layout and timing of the course, as well as sample learning material. Your project will be allocated to one of our development windows by your department. Deadlines for submitting the information in Section 2 are:

  • June 30, 2021 for the Batch A development window (September – August production)
  • August 31, 2021 for the Batch B development window (January – December production)

What does my department or I (as author) need to do to start this process?  

Once your Dean’s office approves your project for an allocation slot, you or your department’s delegate can submit the Scheduled Projects Request form via the link sent to the Dean’s office. Once this is complete, CEL will contact you with further directions; in the meantime, you can begin preparing your proposal by reviewing the pre-development phase criteria. 

What do I submit for my proposal? (Pre-development phase criteria)

Project proposals must be in a good state of readiness before the start of their development period. This means that all the information in the applicable pre-development phase criteria has been provided to CEL. If you're considering submitting a project proposal, please review the criteria for your project type first.

Who can help me prepare my submission?

During the pre-development phase you can reach out to our Program Intake Manager (PIM), Katharine Mason, who can address your questions and connect you with CEL resources and staff.

Where do I submit my proposal?

After the submission of the Scheduled Projects Request form, our Intake Manager will setup a collaborative OneDrive space where the pre-development criteria for your type of project will be collected. Deans, Dean’s delegates, authors, and any contributors/collaborators identified in the Scheduled Projects Request form will have access to this space.

I’m new to online learning (or I haven’t created a course in a while) and don’t know where or how to start creating online materials...

CEL provides resources and support throughout the pre-development phase, including:

  • Consults with an Online Learning Consultant who can provide preliminary instructional design advice
  • Ready-made templates to help frame your materials and provide structure to your content
  • Access to course examples within our learning platforms where you can see how the pieces come together
  • Workshops for new authors (or those seeking new strategies) for creating online course materials

If you’re interested in learning more and/or connecting with our staff, please reach out to our Program Intake Manager (PIM), Katharine Mason.

What is the required time commitment for Scheduled Projects?

CEL uses a project management approach with scheduled projects; this requires a structured, significant, and sustained time commitment from you, which for a fully online course will span 3 terms. It’s important that you carve out 7-10 hours per week to work on your course during the peak development times. We have prepared a Scheduled Projects timeline so you can see both the timeline progression (a steady authoring pace with a 3 week window for each module) and the milestone deliverables.

Timelines for scheduled projects that are not full courses will be outlined at the beginning of those projects and will follow a similar structured and sustained time commitment from you.

What are stand-alone online learning components?

Stand-alone online learning components are discrete, digital materials designed for online, on-campus or blended-learning courses (e.g. interactions used in courses to supplement existing content, a series of videos or lectures, or animations to help explain key concepts or processes).

Why do I need to complete a Course Development Agreement?

For a new course, the redevelopment of an existing online course, or a remote teaching to fully online course conversion, the completion of the Course Development agreement (sample - PDF 840 kb ) is required before work can begin. This agreement between the online course author and the department ensures that intellectual property rights and responsibilities and future teaching arrangements are understood by both parties, and the course is available for offer as needed, protecting program viability and the considerable investment that has been made by both the author(s) and the University.

Can I submit a proposal for a future project?

With the shift to one annual intake cycle CEL does not maintain a ‘wait list’ for future projects. Please contact your Dean's office to discuss your proposal and when it would be appropriate to submit.

Why do proposals need the Dean's approval?

Each year the University provides the faculties and affiliated and federated colleges time allocations (what we call ‘slots’) towards work that CEL can support. Deans then makes decisions on what proposals move forward based upon the strategic priorities of their faculty or college.  

What expertise does CEL provide during the development process?

CEL provides authors with expertise across the planning, design, development, and management of their projects. Our course development team consists of experts in instructional design, media development, learning management systems, and project management.

Can I see examples of courses that have been developed previously and demonstrate best practices?

Yes! Access to our author demo site is available, which showcases course examples in our learning platforms. You can request access to the site via our Intake Manager.

Are there templates I can follow?

CEL provides instructions and templates to help you prepare your learning materials for submission:

If you have questions about the templates please reach out to our Program Intake Manager (PIM), Katharine Mason, who can address your questions and connect you with CEL resources and staff.

Which project proposals will be accepted? 

CEL will review all proposals and contact the Dean’s office and/or Course Author if further clarification is required or if any details are missing in the submission. In light of the high demand for CEL support, only project proposals that are in a good state of readiness by the end of June (for Batch A) or the end of August (for Batch B) will be accepted. If efforts to complete a submission fall short of the deadline, CEL may recommend that a project be resubmitted in the future. 

Are there opportunities to combine smaller projects into one project slot?

We can likely combine two smaller projects into one project slot, but it will depend on the proposed scope and complexity. Proposals for smaller projects will also be assessed during the Pre-Development phase, which will help define the scope and clarify whether the work needed (by both the author and CEL staff) will fit into a smaller slot.

While we'll endeavour to complete smaller projects earlier as resources allow, we can't complete multiple projects within one allocation slot at the same time. For example, if a department wants to use an allocation slot for two smaller projects of about the same scope, we could complete the first one over September to February, and the second one over March to August.

What are the consequences of not meeting the project milestones of a scheduled project?

If your proposal isn’t in a good state of readiness before the start of the scheduled development period, or an approved project is not meeting the major milestones for success during the year, it might be that postponement or a different development model is a better fit.

This is ok; we have options to support you and understand that sometimes ‘life happens’. Projects could potentially be postponed to another year, further support can be provided for preparing proposals for the next intake cycle, or perhaps a more independent, Flexible Development Support model would be a better route.

Why has CEL introduced a new intake model?

Starting with the fall 2021 academic year CEL launched a new annual resource allocation and intake model for Scheduled Projects.

This model is based upon feedback we received from faculty surveys and independent reviews which noted that increased time for authors to curate and prepare course materials was needed. We have also found through years of experience that providing authors with the tools and information they need to build course materials and supporting them with this process before we begin development is imperative for the success of these projects.

To that end, CEL has introduced a Pre-Development phase to both prepare and support you for the work ahead and ensure you’re ready to commit to the timelines and related milestones over the development cycle.