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The Student Is Now the Teacher

This poster is part of the Distance Library Instruction Virtual Poster Session hosted by the ACRL DLS Instruction Committee. We encourage you to ask questions and engage in discussion on this poster! Authors will respond to comments between April 1-5.


Sabrina Juhl, Central Washington University

Poster Description:

Simple tips and tricks from a past online student who is now teaching a class she took as an undergraduate. Applicable to multiple LMS, with Canvas and Blackboard being used as examples.


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Image of The Student is Now the Teacher poster. Links to poster in LucidPress platform

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About the Presenter

Sabrina Juhl is a recent graduate of an online MLIS program teaching a four credit Collection Development course, and will be teaching a one credit Research Fundamentals course. She was a student in both of these online courses during her undergraduate degree and is now approaching them from the other side.


  1. I appreciate that you’ve used your own experience to highlight some of the work that you’re doing when teaching online. Have you thought about assessment, or being able to gauge how students are doing online? Have you noticed any differences in how students respond or engage based on any of the suggestion for teaching online that you’ve highlighted?

    • This course is taken for a letter grade and most students received As and Bs. There are a few short readings quizzes but most of the grade is from the major project of writing a collection development policy. They also submit Student Evaluations of Instruction and the comments showed that they enjoyed the video lectures and the weekly reviews so I will add more video lectures in the future and begin embedding quizzes or other activities in them. Is that the type of assessment you were thinking of?

      I’ve noticed that with more recent readings and continually asking them in discussions to relate it to their experiences, students begin to actually discuss and not just post a minimum effort reply. It also helps if you have them ask a question of their classmates every discussion post and have the reply posts be directed towards that. Those were the most engaging discussions in the classes I took and in the one I teach.

      I also noticed that I received a lot more student interaction when I used the Canvas Speed Grader to highlight specific sections and add comments. Some students would reply directly to my highlighted comments or add a comment to the overall assignment. This made it easier for me to understand what they still needed help with and they seemed to be more comfortable replying to those short threads than a full email.

  2. Thanks for sharing your experience. I also second what Garber-Perason suggests, but for every college there may be a difference in using a variety of LMS (Learning Management Systems), so then what is your perspective on open access learning?

    • I’m definitely a fan of OA resources as we can all learn from each other (as students and teachers) by sharing our knowledge and tools. It can be frustrating that certain LMS are not compatible with other free programs and restrict access but there are some ways around that. I think there will be more continued support for OA and in the meantime, we just have to be creative with our solutions.

  3. I like how in your virtual poster, you showed us actual screenshots of the LMS and what students see – thanks!

  4. Acknowledgments:
    I’d like to thank Maureen Rust, the original creator and instructor of this course. She was one of my first online library science professors who inspired me to become a librarian. Maureen’s hard work made my transition online student to online teacher much easier than I thought it would be because I had such great content to start from.
    I’d also like to thank my co-teacher Elizabeth Brown, another of my first online library science professors and sources of inspiration. She has been extremely helpful in developing my skills as an instructor and I’m so grateful she was my co-teacher for my first online course.

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