This is an archive of the ACE Workshop website. While all of the original content is available, some features (like forms) may no longer work and there may be broken links (indicated with a strike-through). 


The ACE 

A guide for decision-making and professional development planning during times of crisis.

Supporting Instructional Design


As institutions ask faculty to adjust curriculum during times of crisis, it is important to provide the support that faculty need to do the work efficiently and thoughtfully. Instructional designers can be especially helpful because they not only have a leg-up on informed practice, but they also know how to help faculty map contextual challenges to solutions that are aligned with the learning outcomes and pedagogical goals of their courses. Instructional designers can help facilitate learning communities to make curricular crisis response more efficient, and they can work one-on-one with faculty to consider the idiosyncratic relationships among discipline, modality, and teaching style.

Guiding Questions

As you ask faculty to adjust their curricula or switch modalities, ask: “What support are faculty given to assist them in their work, and what can we do to assure that those with expertise in instructional design are available and empowered to advise?” Try as possible to funnel resources accordingly.

  • What ongoing leadership does your campus have to cultivate and coordinate instructional design teams who can assist individual faculty and support design-oriented learning communities?
  • What is the relationship between instructional designers at your college and Academic Affairs? Are those who govern the mission of the institution talking with instructional designers to align institutional plans with faculty development and curriculum creation or revision?
  • Do you feel pressure to outsource curriculum design, and if so, what are the reasons that you could/would not resource your faculty and staff to do this work?
  • What university governance protocols should be followed during this time of crisis as the institution seeks to revise certain policies or structures? Do these protocols involve all affected stakeholders?

Examples & Resources

About the Workbook

The Workbook is an online space for you to record your reflections and assignments for the Workshop.

Participants at PSU will be using an Office 365 Word Document (available via the “Files” section of the “General” channel in the ACE Workshop Teams space).

Participants at other institutions should check with their Workshop Facilitator(s) about where to work on their Workbook.

About the Discussion Forum

The Discussion Forum is an online space where all the members of the Workshop can share ideas and reflections and build community

Participants at PSU will be using the ACE Workshop Teams space).

Participants at other institutions should check with their Workshop Facilitator(s) about where to access their Discussion Forum.

About the VidSpace

The VidSpace is an online space for synchronous video meetings among participants (that can also be recorded and shared for asynchronous access).

Participants at PSU will be using Zoom (available via the Zoom tab in the ACE Workshop Teams space).

Participants at other institutions should check with their Workshop Facilitator(s) about where to access their VidSpace. 

About the ACE “Institutional Level”

The ACE Framework is primarily designed for faculty who are readjusting their curriculum during times of regional, national, or global crisis. But in order for the work that faculty do with their assignments and courses to be most effective, it should be aligned with the institutional mission, which should guide policy and structural planning related to curriculum and teaching.

The institutional level of the framework is a reminder to faculty that if their adjustments at the assignment- or course-level are difficult to operationalize successfully, it could be due to larger policies and structures that are mis-aligned with the ACE Framework; advocacy may be warranted to bring the institution into alignment.

The institutional level of the framework is also a call to university policy-making committees, administrators, Boards of Trustees, and legislators that there is much work to be done to prepare university policies and structures to support students and faculty who are learning and teaching through challenging times.