Teaching Remotely

FAQs on Teaching Remotely for Instructors

For questions regarding technology or digital tools, please visit the Remote Technology FAQs

In addition to reviewing the FAQs, we recommend instructors read through the Instructor Guide for Remote and Hybrid Instruction.

For tips on how to stay secure while using Zoom, go to Secure Zoom Meetings and Webinars.

Preparing to Teach Remotely

How can I prepare to teach remotely?

Begin by going to the Teaching Remotely Course Set-up page to make sure you have the necessary hardware and software for online teaching.

If you do not have the necessary equipment for remote teaching (camera-ready computer, tablet, or mobile device) or are having issues with internet connectivity, please contact your Department Chair, Program Director, or your unit’s Dean’s Office to see how they can assist.

The Instructor Guide for Remote and Hybrid Instruction is a great resource for guidance on best practices for remote pedagogy, as well as building courses and selecting digital learning tools.

Updated: August 20, 2021

How do I access my Zoom account? Where can I go with questions about Zoom or to access Zoom resources?

Zoom accounts have been set up for instructors. Some instructors may not have previously used this platform and will need training. For resources on using Zoom and Canvas, please see the Teaching Remotely training page or IT Services’ web conferencing resources. Additionally, you may review general Zoom training videos and tutorials.

For individual support on setting up your remote teaching, please complete this brief Contact Us form.

Updated: November 30, 2020

What if I don’t have access to the technology needed for teaching remotely?

If you do not have a camera-ready computer, tablet, or mobile device, please contact your Department Chair, Program Director, or your unit’s Dean’s Office. Please note that supplies are limited, so your unit administrators will do their best to accommodate your request.

Posted: September 16, 2020

How can I improve my internet access at home?

If you are teaching remotely from your home and you experience internet access issues, start by contacting your local internet Service Provider (ISP) for more information about services, pricing, and estimated installation dates. 

If you need further support or these options don’t provide you with adequate internet access, please contact your Department Chair, Program Director, or your unit’s Dean’s Office to discuss alternative options.

Posted: September 18, 2020

How do I add my syllabus to the Canvas Syllabus page?

On the Syllabus Page, you can upload a Syllabus file by

  1. Click the Edit button at the top right.
  2. In the Rich Text Editor for the content, put your cursor to where you want to insert the file.
  3. Then on the right side, look for the Files tab. Note: if your browser window size is too small, the Files tab may float to the bottom of the page.  Click on it and you can either select a file that has already been uploaded to Canvas or upload a new file using the Upload a new file link.

Be sure to click the maroon Update Syllabus button to save your work.

It may be useful to view the Introduction to Canvas workshop. The Upload Your Syllabus section starts at 6 minutes and 30 seconds on the recording.  (You can also use the Table of Contents on the left hand side to get to 6:30 quickly.)


Posted: September 16, 2020

What platforms should I use for teaching remotely? May I use any platforms besides those recommended by the University?

The University supports  Zoom, Canvas, Panopto and their embedded tools for remote teaching. 

Zoom – video-conferencing software to manage large or small group online presentations and discussions. Zoom is your key tool for face-to-face teaching online. Get training  |  More resources

Canvas – course management software for organizing and sharing materials, hosting asynchronous discussions, and grading student assignments.                      Get training  |  More resources

Panopto – software that provides simple tools for producing, presenting and annotating videos.                                                                                                         Get training  |  More resources

The University also has contracts for the following products, which meet University requirements for FERPA and include features for accessibility: Microsoft Office 365, Google G Suite, and Box.

Posted: September 16, 2020

May I use any platforms besides those recommended by the University?

If you are interested in supplementary digital tools, please view the complete list of supported tools in the Instructor Guide for Remote and Hybrid Instruction. Due to resource limitations, IT Services will not be able to support tools outside of those mentioned in the guide for remote learning.

Updated: August 21, 2021

Who can I contact centrally or in my unit for tech support?

If you typically contact your school or divisional IT services for support, then please contact them first. If you typically contact central IT Services, please do continue to do so. You may also complete a request for support regarding teaching remotely , and someone will get back to you in a timely manner. This list of IT contacts in each unit may also be helpful.

Posted: September 16, 2020

Best Practices for Remote Teaching

Where can I learn more and find best practices for remote teaching and learning?

The Instructor Guide for Remote and Hybrid Teaching takes instructors through options for how to structure and design in-person and remote courses, provides a detailed list of ITS supported digital learning tools, and shares pedagogical considerations. 

For additional resources for remote and hybrid instruction, please visit our Pedagogical Guidedance page. 

Updated: August 20, 2021

How can I optimize classroom time teaching a remote or hybrid course?

Updated: November 30, 2020

Will I be asked to record my course sessions? How can these recordings be accessed by students?

Instructors have the discretion to record course sessions, except when recording is required to meet the needs of students granted an accommodation by the Office of Student Disability Services and in accordance with the Academic Year 2020–2021 Recording Policy.

Instructors who record course sessions should post those recordings on the course’s Canvas site. Students attending the course session will be able to access recorded course sessions posted on the course’s Canvas site.

Posted: September 16, 2020

Accessibility for Remote Learners

How will I know if any students need accommodations for my remote class?

Instructors of record should first confirm if they have received formal notification of a student’s approved accommodations via an emailed accommodation determination letter from Student Disability Services (SDS). The notification will provide details regarding how the accommodation applies to a class and what accommodations may need to be implemented. If a student indicates that they need an accommodation for a disability but does not have a determination letter from SDS, please ask the student to contact SDS.

We recommend engaging early with students who have submitted accommodation requests to understand their needs and set reasonable expectations. It is important to remember this is a challenging time, filled with uncertainty, and our students may need a little more support. If you have questions or need assistance implementing a learning plan for a student, please contact SDS at disabilities@uchicago.edu or via phone at 773-702-6000. 

Please visit FAQ’s for faculty about Student Disability Services for more information.

Posted: September 16, 2020

How can I adapt my course to be taught remotely for students with disabilities?

Student Disability Services (SDS) will work with you to complete the Attendance Flexibility and Deadline Extension Accommodation Agreement Form (PDF). All course materials are required to be accessible. Please review the SDS Faculty Resources page for more information on how to build an accessible course. 

If you have additional questions about accommodation implementation, contact Student Disability Services at disabilities@uchicago.edu or via phone at 773-702-6000.

Updated: November 30, 2020