Online Learning


A range of resources are available for faculty involved in the design, development and teaching of program components in face-to-face classes, blended formats or fully online courses. Support is available through CTSI, as well as the Online Learning Strategies portfolio within Information Technology Services (ITS).


An online course is designed such that all of the instructional interaction occurs without the student and instructor being in the same physical location. Assessments for online courses are conducted or submitted online, with the possible exception of final or interim assessment requiring attendance on campus no more than once per session.

View information about continuity planning and online learning.

A hybrid course (also known as “blended”) is designed such that face-to-face teaching time is reduced, but not eliminated. At U of T, a course is considered to be hybrid if at least one-third of scheduled class time is replaced by online activities. Assessments for hybrid courses may be conducted in-person and/or online. Students must be informed at the outset of the course of components or assessments that will be conducted in-person, if any.

An inverted classroom, also known as the “flipped” model, does not reduce face-to-face class time. Instead, the course is enhanced with additional digital resources such as video lectures, quizzes or other activities that students access prior to class. This allows for design of active learning and hands-on activities to be incorporated into the classroom time. The term “flipped” refers to the idea that video lectures might be provided outside of classroom time, and what would have been homework assignments completed during class.

A Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) is an online course aimed at broad participation targeting a global audience. Access to direct instructor and learner feedback is not anticipated and it should be noted that University of Toronto MOOCs are not for credit. The University of Toronto has partnered with two organizations providing MOOC platforms, Coursera and EdX, as described on the Open UToronto web site. Currently some of our MOOC content is being repurposed in conjunction with selected University of Toronto degree program courses through use of the inverted classroom model.

online learning image with computer and tablet


Online Learning Strategies (OLS)

Through OLS, support is available for online and hybrid course development, as well as special project work including eProctoring, virtual reality, MOOCs, open educational resources and other emergent learning technologies.

CTSI Services

  • Workshops: CTSI offers workshops throughout the year to assist new and more experienced faculty with developing and maintaining their courses and Quercus Training sessions.
  • Consultations: CTSI staff offer support for course design (in-class, online or blended), teaching strategies and pedagogical issues for University of Toronto instructors and graduate students. Please fill out the online form to book a consultation.

Instructors are welcome to contact CTSI for assistance with any of the following services related to online learning:

  • Quercus set-up and the use of tools
  • Advice on use of webinar software, Camtasia, the University’s plagiarism detection tool
  • Pedagogical considerations related to effective use of instructional technology
  • Advice regarding online assignment and assessment design
  • Information on relevant academic policies

support icon featuring magnifying glass


Quercus:  Instructions on how to use Quercus tools and other online tools as well as contact information for support.

Other Campus Help Contacts:  Listing of divisional instructional technology staff who may provide support for Quercus and other online tools.

ESC – Enterprise Service Centre: ITS Services including passwords, security, Quercus support and more