'Countdown to Classes' toolkit available to help instructors prepare for fall

August 12, 2020

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — As Penn State instructors gear up for the first day of classes on Aug. 24, a new set of resources is available to help them navigate the current teaching and learning landscape. The “Countdown to Classes” toolkit, created by a group of Penn State teaching and learning experts, includes a flexible instruction teaching guide, a two-hour webinar, and 25 virtual drop-in office hours.

More information about each resource is below.

Flexible Instruction Teaching Guide

The Flexible Instruction Teaching Guide is an online handbook which instructors can quickly reference as they prepare their courses for fall. Topics range from Universal PPE (personal protective equipment) Recommendations and Classroom Layout Information, to Facilitating Learning When Students are Under Stress, to Producing Your Own Video Content.

Interactive webinar

An interactive webinar, to be held from 1 to 3 p.m. Friday, Aug. 14, aims to provide instructors with essential tools to  be successful in  the upcoming semester. The webinar will cover topics such as implementing flexible instructional modes, preparing course syllabi with recommended COVID-19 language, setting up your Zoom learning space and classroom, and more.

Access the webinar at:


Virtual office hours with teaching experts 

Penn State teaching experts will host 25 Q&A sessions to which instructors are invited to drop in and ask questions about teaching and learning topics, including, but not limited to:

  • Navigating different instructional modes
  • Integrating in-person learners with remote learners
  • Determining which Penn State resources are right for you

The teaching experts leading the sessions include consultants from the Schreyer Institute for Teaching Excellence, representative from Teaching and Learning with Technology, and learning designers and faculty from across the University.

The virtual office hours will begin Aug. 13 and will run through Sept. 3. A full schedule can be found at keepteaching.psu.edu/countdown-to-classes.

Access the sessions at:


Password:  4404421

More information about all "Countdown to Classes" resources can be found at keepteaching.psu.edu/countdown-to-classes.

Last Updated August 14, 2020