Sustainable Rapid Design for Online Tutorials

Poster Description: Looking to design and implement an online tutorial while avoiding the overwork that comes with ambitious timelines? This session provides guidance on managing an online project from ideation to implementation under tight deadlines. We outline steps for building collaboration in virtual environments and outlining approaches to tutorial project planning.

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Presenter Name(s): Leslie Drost, Kennesaw State University and Christina Holm, Kennesaw State University

Presenter Bio(s): Leslie Drost is the First-Year Experience Librarian for the Kennesaw State University Library System and a Librarian Assistant Professor. She manages programs for first-year students and maintains relationships with faculty. Ms. Drost in the process of earning a Master of Instructional Design and Technology.  She can be reached at

Christina Holm is the Kennesaw State University Library System Instruction Coordinator and a Librarian Associate Professor. With six years of professional experience in a public services department, Ms. Holm has led many teacher training events that focus on planning and implementing instructional design topics. She can be reached at

5 replies on “Sustainable Rapid Design for Online Tutorials”

Hi Leslie and Christina! Thanks for sharing this process and the workflow system for the tutorials. On tutorial, how was it determined if a student’s open-ended response was “correct”/green or “hmmm…”/red response? And how was the course completion certificate rewarded to students and/or faculty?

Hi Ruth, thank you for your question!

The open-ended questions were tough to manage. We did our best to structure the open-ended questions so that a variety of responses could be correct. In this case we identified keywords we wanted to see and so long as one or more of those word were in the student’s answer they received a “correct” response. We then tested our responses and updated the feedback based on our testing and questions from our fellow librarians. For example, in answer to the question: what is your favorite part of a source’s record, we accepted any answer that included one of the following: title; author; publisher; date; abstract; contents lists; tables; contents.

We set the tutorial up so that it would produce a tutorial completion summary in the web-browser and also send the student a copy of their responses.

Thanks for sharing your process! We struggle with an unequal distribution of workload when developing tutorials, as each librarian does their own thing; as a result, the tutorials themselves vary in how engaging they are to students.

About how many librarians were involved in each of the project teams? We’re a pretty small library, all told.

Hi Allison, we did this project with 3 librarians! We divided our work between the 3 librarians as follows:
– project organizer (dates & deliverables), tutorial writer (5 tutorials), and content uploader to LibWizard.
– platform reviewer/selector, image creator, multimedia creator, landing page creator.
– outreach, marketing, and tutorial writer (7 tutorials).

The positive aspects of this workflow were that it kept us from duplicating work and also helped us review our content. For example, we all performed a cross-review of the tutorial writing and multi-media. This required a fair amount of up-front work as we needed to agree on tone, learning outcomes, etc. The benefit was that it was very easy to revise one another’s work! You’ll also notice that this distribution of work meant that we could all work concurrently: I was our content uploader and undertook that task while our other team-members created our landing page and marketing materials.

The down-side of this workflow is that pre-planning step where the team gains consensus on tone and content. That took a fair amount of time!

I personally liked the freedom that came with knowing I’d have other folks to review my work and provide corrections! I also liked knowing that I wouldn’t have to create marketing materials and could instead focus on the content upload (my preferred activity).

Fantastic! I’d worried that it would take more than three folks, so I’m glad to hear that it works with a smaller team.

I’m even more excited to share this process with the rest of our team. It sounds like it will save us a lot of time in the end as we begin to plan and enhance our current tutorial offerings.

Thanks again!