Lecturer Page: Keep on teaching and learning


Welcome to the Keep on Teaching and Learning webpage supported by the Centre for Teaching and Learning (CTL). Our aim is to ensure that lecturers and students at NWU receive the information and advice to enhance learning and teaching. This is a page for lecturers. Visit the student KeepOnTL support page here.

This webpage is a dynamic environment with regular updates on best practices and tools for teaching and learning, as well as development opportunities for staff. Should you have an immediate challenge please submit an e-request.  One of the CTL technical experts, instructional designers, graphic designers, educational technologists, curriculum advisers, and professional academic developers will then contact your to address your need.

Guidelines for the use of MS Teams in Teaching and Learning

Microsoft Teams is the official platform for conducting online meetings and classes at the NWU. Please acquaint yourself with the guidelines for effectively setting up and using MS Teams for Teaching and Learning purposes. CLICK HERE to download the latest version of the guidelines.

The guidelines are subject to change. Please revisit to view the latest version of the Guidelines for the use of MS Teams in Teaching and Learning at the NWU.

Are your eFundi Module sites ready?

This interactive checklist will help you as NWU lecturer to assure that your eFundi module sites adhere to minimum requirements for effective engagement with students. Once you click on the button below, you will be asked whether you want to create a copy of the Google Doc. Click on Make a Copy. The copy will be saved to your Google Drive.



Lecturer Support:

Complete the e-request form

Get the right help from the right section in CTL


T&L Technologies Helpdesk:

Log an eFundi or T&L Technology help ticket

Click on “Something is not working” >> “T&L Technology Support”.

Central Helpdesk number: 018 285 5930

Available on weekday 08:00am - 16:45pm

eFundi Tutorials for Lecturers

eFundi Tutorials for Students

Accessibility Principles




  • Remote Teaching Guide

Teaching remotely will require you to rethink your face-to-face teaching and learning activities for the online learning environment. Remote teaching requires a shift from a reliance on proximity to enable learning and teaching from a distance.

When you plan remote classes, content and activities, always keep the learning outcomes in mind as well as how you plan to assess the achievement of the learning outcomes. Do not overwhelm students with work that is not directly related to set learning outcomes. Take these steps to choose the suitable medium for content:

This guide takes you through the steps to undertake the shift to remote teaching.

(This open educational resource guide is adapted from Cape Town University’s support page for remote teaching during COVID-19 http://bit.ly/cilt-remote-teaching)


  • Planning templates

Consider using this template as you plan how to present the rest of the module and facilitate learning: Planning Template.

  • Organise content logically

The Resources tool from eFundi provides a structured space for you to share module content in all formats. The first step would be to plan and create a folder structure for your eFundi site that would be practical for you, your colleagues, and the students. Next, upload each resource within the relevant folder and as part of the upload, you may want to notify students that new material has been uploaded via the eFundi email notification setting. Tip: Ask students to reset their eFundi notifications to allow for messages to be sent automatically from eFundi to their inbox regularly.

Ensure that students know what to do with the resources you provide. If you are using the Lessons tool, clear instructions along with linked resources will provide a guided learning experience for your students. For new or novice users of eFundi, regular and structured announcements with instructions and links to relevant resources will also be sufficient.

  • Accessibility is key!

Some students will access material via mobile devices, sometimes with low cellular reception and limited data. Even if access to eFundi may be free for some students (T&Cs apply), it is advisable to reduce the file size of resources as much as possible. The format of the material should also be accessible via mobile devices. This implies converting file formats for example, MS Word documents or PowerPoint presentations to PDF. Visit the File format information section in the Accessibility Guidelines for more information.

  • Copyright

Respect copyright of all resources. Copyrighted articles, books and other resources may not be distributed without DALRO clearance. Please observe copyright when making sections of a book available to students. Contact your Librarian for more information.

For more information on the DALRO process, and to register your resources, visit the Website:  www.nwudalro.co.za.


NB Tutorials:

How to make your site joinable

How to join a joinable site

Remote teaching from the NWU’s Learning Management System, eFundi

Your eFundi site will be the first go-to for students to gain access to their lecturer, their learning material and fellow students.

As you prepare to teach remotely and orientate your students, you may be overwhelmed with new ideas or simply do not know where to start. It is important to have a structured plan of what you want to accomplish with your students during this challenging time. Consider new ideas but keep it simple! Only activate the eFundi tools that you are going to use on the module site actively.


Think, student context!

Consider the physical and psychological space in which your students may find themselves. Ensuring student access is central to all your planning. Within the COVID-19 context, students will be accessing their module site oneFundi from mobile phones and personal computers with free access to eFundi but at various levels of signal strength. Follow the Guiding principles for enhancing accessibility.

Remember to adhere to your faculty directives, and guidance provided by the programme leader, while considering guidelines, templates, and recommendations available to you from CTL.


Request form: Graphic design and eFundi Lessons development

At CTL we understand that lecturers do not always have the time to create an eFundi site for the current remote teaching and learning mode of delivery. We have designed frameworks to support you in making these decisions and these can be altered for your specific lecturing style, content, assessment plan, and class size.

Do you need support with:

  • Setting up a module site on eFundi
  • Rebuilding an old module site
  • Changing your module site to support students during Covid 19
  • Instructional design (eFundi development)
  • Graphic Services

Complete the following Request form


Choose the suitable medium for content

This table provides an outline for when to use text, audio, images and video or any combination thereof.

Choosing the right tool

Use this table to decide which tools will address the needs of your students best.


Choose suitable assessment tools

Assessments pose particular challenges. Consider the type of assessment you want to use first, and then make a choice of tool. Please note that these tools are for formative assessment on eFundi.



  • Using media in eFundi

This resource assists you in choosing and developing the appropriate media to support learning through your eFundi course site. Making use of media when teaching remotely can increase student engagement in your online learning environment. Integration of media components may increase students’ perception of important information and motivation for learning. Click here for the TEACHING REMOTELY WITH MEDIA: A guide and tutorial. This guide contains detail regarding available media tools at NWU and detail about how to best use these tools for remote teaching.

The North-West University has committed itself to the promotion, use and creation of Open Educational Resources through the OER Declaration which was approved by the NWU’s Senate in March 2018. Consequently, NWU staff are allowed to not only use OER themselves but also create OER for broader use. This OER Quick Guide gives practical tips on how to search, use and remix Open Education Resources.

Videos use a lot of data and require special mentioning when it comes to accessibility. Videos are usually hosted outside the NWU platforms and would thus still require data to view. Due to copyright laws it is prohibited to download videos that are hosted externally and upload them to Resources on eFundi. Therefore, plan the use of videos carefully when you consider choosing, for instance, YouTube videos as required module content because they may limit accessibility.

Keep self-recorded and educational videos short and to the point. Reduce the file size as much as possible without compromising the quality of the recording. Video files should be less than 60mb to to increase download speed for students. A warning should be given when a file is larger than 20mb (mobile users. Break down long videos into smaller files if possible. Record videos at a low screen resolution: 360p (640x360) to a maximum of 720p (1280x720). Save videos in MP4 format. Videos should be, as far as possible, accompanied with a transcript of the audio track (in PDF), and if possible, the audio track (MP3/M4A) to make them more accessible. View this tutorial about transcribing with free Otter software.

  • Concept capture equipment

CTL is making a limited number of cameras available on a loan basis. Get the information on who to contact here. Please read the Teaching remotely with media - guide and tutorial.

  • Embed self-recorded video and audio on Lessons in eFundi

View this PDF tutorial or Video tutorial on how to embed self-recorded videos and audio files in Lessons and prevent video content from downloading automatically. Quick tip: Do not embed the video/audio. Rather upload the material in Resources first and then insert a textbox in Lessons. Copy and paste the code below in the Source of the Text editor and replace the placeholder text with your video's URL. To get the URL of your video or audio file, go to Resources and rightCopy the video/audio URL in Resources by right-clicking on the video/audio.

  • ​Screen recording tools:

Record screencast video of other software, audio-only, narrated PowerPoint presentations

Record webcam

Cannot export one recording in audio-only and video

Resizable screen capture window

Screen annotations (draw)

PowerPoint 2016 not only allows you to record your presentation but also any area of your computer screen. These recordings can be saved as separate video files (MP4). Look at this tutorial about creating a narrated PowerPoint. Look at the step-by-step tutorial and this video to see how to do a screen recording and an audio recording in PowerPoint 2016.


Record webcam, screencast video, audio-only

Export one recording in audio-only (M4A file) and video (MP4)

No resizable screen capture window

No screen annotations

Zoom can be used to meet with your colleagues online, with or without video. All participants can share their screens and the session can be recorded. You can also use Zoom to record your classes in video and audio-only format. View this tutorial to see how to record a narrated PowerPoint using Zoom. View this tutorial series for the whole process from opening a Zoom account, recording and uploading to eFundi Resources. You also have access to mutiple tutorials created by Zoom. Download Zoom here.

Caution: Depending on the student profile and student access to the internet it is NOT RECOMMENDED to use Zoom for live interaction with students. Zoom is data intensive. Students may not have unlimited access to data. Their WiFi may not be stable.


Record screencast video

Not compatible with standard webcams but Aver video equipment avaiable on loan basis (more info here), no audio-only

Cannot export one recording in audio-only and video

Resizable screen capture window

Screen annotations (type, draw)

EZLive allows users to perform screen recordings with annotations. It allows you to draw and type anywhere on your screen. EZLive is ideal for software demonstrations. See a tutorial here. Download EZLive here.

Tool for creating transcripts:

Video editing and compression tool: Windows & IOS

OpenShot is free video editing software that is easy to use, quick to learn, and surprisingly powerful. Use it to combine and edit self-recorded videos, adjust existing open educational videos, and compress videos (reduce the file size). View these tutorials on how to install on PC and MAC. View these tutorial on how to edit on PC and MAC. Download OpenShot here. For more tutorials click here.

Video compression tool: Windows

HandBrake is free software with which you can compress videos (decrease the file size). It is very easy to use. One can for instance decrease a 500mb video file to only 60mb. We have created a tutorial on how to use HandbBrake to decrease the file size of a video. Click here to watch a tutorial on how to use HandBrake, created by one of NWU's lecturers. Get HandBrake here.

Video compression tool: Windows

Did you know that you can use the trusted and free VLC Media player to convert or compress video files? Follow the step in this PDF tutorial. Get VLC here.

Smartphone video compression tool:

Smartphone scanner tool:

DIY Document camera:

Click here to view the tutorial on how to make a document camera with your cellphone and a paper cup.

Tutorials for recording from home:

The unique language policy of the NWU

In line with our multilingual policy, we strive to promote the academic status of the predominant African languages of the regions in which our campuses are situated, namely Setswana and Sesotho. We do this in addition to maintaining English and Afrikaans as the current languages of instruction. Our functionally multilingual language policy is therefore an additive model, where we add languages of instruction to those that have traditionally been used on our campuses. Our ultimate purpose is to achieve both improved access to NWU and improved teaching-learning.
Language facilitation through multilingual pedagogies takes place by a variety of means, including multilingual learning material and multilingual class discussions with peer facilitation, educational interpreting and translation, multilingual videos and captured lectures, and in various other technology-enabled ways.


The NWU's eventual purpose

Ultimately our staff will be able to function more multilingually, while our students will be enabled to master, internalise and reproduce teaching-learning content better – and be able to do so in a number of languages. Thus they will be better prepared to function in the multilingual world of work.


Language services available at the NWU:

The Language Directorate of the NWU is a support services division that renders a variety of language services to the University. These services are budgeted for centrally, but faculties themselves also budget for certain language services, particularly for editing and translation of assessments, for which they have preferred, established language practitioners.
Since the termination of contact classes with the Covid 19-related lockdown, the Interpreting Services in the Language Directorate have been providing an extensive range of language services. Apart from offering interpreting services, the Language Directorate can assist with the translation of your written and audio-visual learning material like voice-over slides and video recordings for online teaching. However, where faculties have established sources of language services, they must continue to use these. Study guide editing and translation are still done via the normal route (study guide production process, CTL).


Guidelines and best practices

  • Zoom can also be used for efficient screen recordings. This can significantly reduce the eventual size of the video file that has to be uploaded.

  • When submitting texts with recordings to be dubbed, please also send it to us in the original file format (like PowerPoint) and not as an already exported video. If, for example, you would like to share the final product as an MP4 video, we can then export the translated voice-over PowerPoint as such.
  • If you made use of slide notes when you made the recording, please also share these with the language practitioner. This will save us first transcribing the slide notes before translating them to be dubbed.
  • To ensure that students don’t lose focus it is advisable to not make videos too long (e.g. longer than 30 minutes). Rather divide a long video into shorter sections. This also makes the dubbing process much easier.
  • Conversely, if there are too many videos that are very short (e.g. less than 30 seconds) these can be combined to make for a more coherent, altogether better user experience.
  • As far as possible, stick with non-proprietary file formats that can be used in multiple operating systems (like MP4 files). This will ensure that the maximum number of students can have access to your material.
  • Depending on the amount and nature of the work we need to translate or dub, please allow adequate time for us to deliver the translated material. Please negotiate a deadline with whoever is doing the translation and/or voice-over for you. There is normally a queue of waiting jobs.



Contact information

For the translation of eFundi Lessons, eFundi Tests and Quizzes, Tests, Assignments and Examinations you can contact CTrans:

Wendy Barrow (CTrans Coordinator)
+27 16 910 3485
Building 7 Room 202
Vanderbijlpark Campus
North-West University


For the translation of printed study guides and Module Overview Documents, please follow the correct procedure by working via your respective study guide coordinator. More information can be found on CTL’s web page for Study Guide Coordination.

For the translation of slides, slide voice-overs, the dubbing of screen recordings, as well as for arranging interpreting for live classes you can contact the respective satellite managers of the Language Directorate (Interpreting Services):


  • Language Services: Faculty of Theology

Rineé Pretorius

  • Language Services: Faculty of Engineering

Hänschen Van As

  • Language Services: Faculty of Education

Lynn Cilliers 018 285 2676


Monica Van Zyl 018 285 2676

  • Language Services: Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences,
    Faculty of Humanities

Basil Rabie 018 299 2756

  • Language Services: Faculty of Health Sciences

(BCur BPharm BHSc Physiology)
Marilize Van Deventer 018 299 2397

  • Language Services: Faculty of Law

Zannelize Strauss
This office also does the translation for the following:
Forensic Accountancy, Social Work, Dietetics, Consumer Sciences and Psychology.

  • Language Services: Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Sciences

Johan Steyn 018 285 2686
This office also does the translation for Sport and Recreation Science.


The Courselink option will ensure that registered students are automatically added to your eFundi site. Conditionally registered students are not eligible to access module content in eFundi.  When receiving student inquiries regarding access to Courselinked eFundi sites, please ask students to confirm their registration with the registration office before requesting them to log a request with the T&L Technologies Help desk. Students must provide their student number and module code to the helpdesk. Requests for assistance can be made via the IT-Help system or call 018 285 5930.


Orientating your students

Your students will require your detailed guidance and instruction on how to complete the module. Students need to understand how the course is organised and what to find where. They will require instructions on how to navigate your eFundi site and the various components thereof.  Furthermore, they need to be introduced to the approach that you will use in facilitating their learning and during teaching and what your expectations of them are during the learning process. Consider the following topics to address during orientation.
  • Overview and organisation
  • Navigating the teaching-learning landscape of the course
  • Establishing clear expectations
What will your students expect from you, as their lecturer?

Using eFundi as part of a Blended learning approach implies moving resources and selected activities online.  You will need to assist your students to focus on important learning activities and resources. Students may easily feel overwhelmed at first, so provide clear instructions on timelines, the type of activities they will engage in, where to find resources, and how to complete activities and assignments. Keep it simple, and keep students focussed on achieving the learning outcomes.  Provide a clear schedule for the module, that will assist students to pace themselves through the learning activities and course material supporting the activities.  Provide clear instructions on which activities will take place where i.e. Face-to-face or online. 

Outline the communication strategy and explain to students how they should and will be able to contact you, (for example, during office hours - either online or in person - via email, through the eFundi Messages tool etc.) and when you will be able to respond to questions. Remind students to check eFundi on predetermined dates to keep up with announcements for the module. Assist your students to focus on their time management and communication with you.

What will you expect of your student?

Explain to students how often they should attend class, log in to the eFundi module site, where to start, what activities to complete, and provide an estimated time of how long assessments will take them to achieve the outcomes. Explain where students can find assessment information, how to submit assessments, and when they can expect assessment grades and feedback. Agree on guidelines for communicating with peers.

Provide easy access to academic and eFundi support resources

Depending on the year level of students and how eFundi was integrated into previous modules, students may have or lack specific skills, in using the eFundi tools. Orientate your students on how you will be making use of the eFundi tools that you will be using on the module site.  You may need to gradually introduce students to eFundi tools especially if they are first years, in a first semester, or if they are using eFundi for the first time. Utilise the existing eFundi instructions and tutorials made available for students.

Refer students to the Keep on Teaching and Learning webpage for students. By clicking on the Student Support icon students will gain access to online student academic development support available as well as contact details of student academic advisers, supplemental instruction (SI) leaders, tutors, and academic peer mentors (if used for your module). Refer students to the Keep on Teaching and Learning webpage for students, for tips and advice on how they can manage their learning.

Supporting your students may be challenging. Consider questions from a student's perspective on learning to see what students have to say. Ask for advice on how to answer questions. Share with colleagues.


General communication guidelines

It is important to communicate with students in a timely manner. In your engagement with students, keep the tone friendly and polite, and reassure students of your guidance and that their academic needs are important to you as their lecturer. When using eFundi as part of your communication approach with students, consider the principles of low tech, low data, low bandwidth, and low urgency.

Regular and planned communication is vital to guide your student to achieve success in your module. Plan for two-way communication between you and students and between students via the module site on eFundi or in person.

Outline your communication strategy to the students. Explain when and how they should expect communication from you and how they will be able to contact you or fellow students via eFundi. Keep communication short and to the point but detailed enough so that you are not flooded with questions. Keep the tone friendly and polite, and reassure students of your academic guidance.

The Announcement tool is the standard one-way communication to students from eFundi. When adding attachments to Announcements or using hyper/inks to eFundi resources in the text itself, this seamless way of communicating becomes a powerful tool to guide student learning. eFundi Messages, is similar to an eFundi-based e-mail system and provides an option for private two-way communication between lecturers and students. It is also an important tool that may be used to follow up with individual students.  The tool also allows for communication between students which is required especially for groupwork. Different dedicated eFundi Chatrooms can be created to allow for spaces for student-to-student support and synchronous (i.e. same time) chats during 'virtual office hours'. The unstructured format of chatrooms is similar to WhatsApp messages. For structured discussions, focussed on specific topics, consider the Forum tool where students can reply directly to a specific topic and post. The Forum tool is also suitable for academic discussions and reflections that should be visible to all.

The eFundi communication tools, with the exception of the Chat room, are group sensitive and as such, make it possible to communicate with a specific group of students on your module site.

Students rely on one another during face-to-face sessions for emotional, social, and academic support. To enhance a sense of community and a sense of belonging, create spaces for student-to-student interaction and support for academic purposes. Dedicated discussion forums (with a clear purpose description) or chatrooms provide different options for public communication within your site.

Incorporate this in your communication plan and tell students how Chatrooms will be used within your module. Text messages allow for low data (bandwidth) asynchronous and synchronous options.

The gradual creation of a sense of community and belonging starts with communication. Such a sense of community is important if formal group work forms part of the student learning experience. Read more on group activities or consult with an instructional designer or with an academic developer at CTL to help plan these activities.


The use of social media as part of your communication strategy is an option if students have access to the specific platform and you have provided clear guidelines for use. Consult with students first during contact sessions or by using appropriate eFundi tools (e.g. Polls or Chatrooms) to determine the option that you intend to use is accessible to all students. You may already be using joinable WhatsApp groups and Google chat; please consider the accessibility guidelines for teaching NWU students. Please also read the NWU Rules and Guidelines for using WhatsApp and CTL Guidelines for using WhatsApp for teaching as part of your communication strategy.

Microsoft Teams is the official platform for conducting online meetings and classes at the NWU. Please acquaint yourself with the guidelines for effectively setting up and using MS Teams for Teaching and Learning purposes. CLICK HERE to download the latest version of the guidelines. MS Teams can be used to meet with students synchronously online, with or without video. Special caution need to be taken, not to exclude students. NOTE: as MS Teams and other virtual meeting tools like Zoom and google meet is data intensive, it is important to request students without their own data and stable WiFi to access the meeting using the resources made available by the NWU on campus.

CAUTION: Where virtual platforms are used for academic sessions, these should be recorded and the recordings or summary of what transpired made available to all students in the group. Contact IT in advance in order to know more about the platforms that are officially supported by NWU IT.

1.5 Organised student/peer-led communication (SI’s, tutors & mentors)

Communities of practice could be facilitated through smaller social media communication groups (with CTL support and using the supplemental instructors and peer mentors). Small communication or learning groups are also formed informally by students but lecturers can encourage the formation of these groups and integrate this into their module.

The NWU acknowledges that the need for contact remains critical in both the face-to-face (contact) as well as in distance contexts. Face-to-face contact needs to be facilitated such that students do have some contact experience with each other through their communities of practice. The guidelines for small groups' discussion between lecturers and students apply for interaction between SI leaders or tutors and students.

Where peer mentors mostly work on a one-on-one basis with the students, the SI and tutors have larger numbers of students per module. SI leaders and tutors can ask students who want to meet in a face-to-face setting to see if there is a need.

Venues on the respective campuses available should be used for this purpose. The following examples apply:

  • Unused T&L venues.
  • Spaces in the library
  • Informal indoor and outdoor spaces.

A row of personal computers (PCs) in the reading labs on of the respective campuses can be made available for students, especially first-year students if they need any assistance with First-year orientation-related questions or if they need help with eFundi.

Faculties know which venues they may utilise and will therefore be in the position to indicate to students which venues are available and accessible for purposes of group work or self-study. This will alleviate the pressure on existing study spaces, such as those made available in the Libraries. Workspace bookings can be made electronically by lecturers through the IWMS (Integrated Work Management System). Alternatively, Tutoring, SI, and Academic Peer Mentoring can take place in an online format via WhatsApp, eFundi, and sometimes via Zoom hence these communications or learning groups are formed within the NWU peer support programmes.

1. 6 At a more practical level:

  • Manage lecturer-initiated communication load:
    • Communicate early and often. Pre-planned frequently scheduled communication can ease student anxiety and save lecturers from dealing with individual questions. Avoid communicating too much. Remember students are enrolled for other modules as well.
    • Some questions from individual students may very well be pertinent to all students. Consider posting FAQs and answers and ask students to check these before asking individual questions.
  • Offer students an opportunity to exchange phone numbers and, for those who are interested, to create a WhatsApp chat group (encourage students to form these communications or learning groups)
  • Ensure that learning materials and resources are clearly labeled, easy to find, and easy to navigate.
  • Check-in with students:  Ask students how they are doing and remind them of upcoming tasks, in class or online. Reach out to students on a regular basis; check if they are confused about any assignments and set up office hours where they can ask any questions they have. Ask them for feedback about how teaching and learning in the module are working for them. Since the goal is to foster learning in students, work with them to ascertain which approaches are viable.
  • Identify struggling students and those who do not participate early on and reach out to support them. Put students into contact with psychosocial support services if needed.
  • Make expectations clear: outline what is required by making all module requirements explicit, for instance, which levels of participation will be acceptable.
  • Communicate consultation hours: i.e., those times during Office hours when you are available to talk to students or to respond to queries via communication media. Also communicate when it is likely that you will not be able to respond to queries immediately (for example, after hours, or unless otherwise advised).

Communication guidelines applicable to online facilitation of learning

Effective communication practice should form part of your approach to teaching and learning and should be an inherent part of the design of modules. Various theories and models exist to guide lecturers in creating the necessary scaffolding to support students to learn and participate in online teaching and learning. Salmon (2004) has identified five stages of online interaction or facilitation. Each stage requires distinct types of support from facilitators/lecturers.

Stage 1: Access and motivation
Provide students with the necessary information and technical support to get started online. Students might need individual technical help (helpline) as well as encouragement to overcome any technical difficulties and uncertainties. Clarify roles and expectations in terms of tasks, assessments, the time needed, and communication channels.

Stage 2: Online socialisation
Lecturers have a vital role to play in helping students develop a sense of community and feel at ease with the online culture. Promote mutual respect and defuse any potential conflicts between individuals and groups. It is important to create an atmosphere where students feel respected and free to express their views. As some students might be reluctant to initially participate in written discussion forums, and they should be encouraged to read and enjoy others' contributions for a short while before compelling them to post their own messages. This can be done by presenting them with an informal icebreaker or brainstorming activity.

Stage 3: Information exchange
As information starts to flow and students need immediate access and fast information exchange, it is important that the lecturers help students through suitable time management and well-structured content and activities. Students interact with the course content and interact with the instructor and peers in the course. It is essential for students to know where to find the various resources they need and to understand clearly how their interactions with peers and tutors can help them achieve their learning outcomes.

Lecturers need to provide guidance and assistance where needed and encourage open communication between students themselves as well as with them.

Stage 4: Knowledge construction
Lecturers have a vital role to play in building and sustaining groups. As interactions unfold and expand, many (but not all) participants/students engage in some active exploration, and in the process widen their own viewpoints and appreciate differing perspectives. During this stage, students should be interacting and starting to collaborate in their knowledge construction. Problem-based and practice-based tasks are appropriate at this stage.

During Stage 4 students start to become online authors. Knowledge construction occurs when students explore issues, give meaning, discuss their understanding, and reflect on and re-evaluate their perceptions.

The lecturer now needs to pull together the students' contributions through discussion and collaboration, summarising from time to time, and relating them to concepts and theories from the module. Make sure that diverse views are given consideration and help keep the discussion on track.

Stage 5: Development
Students begin to explore their own thinking and knowledge-building processes. It is common at this stage for students to reflect on and discuss how they are networking and to evaluate the technology and its impact on their learning processes. Students become responsible for their own learning and need less support beyond that already available. Experienced students often become helpful in assisting peers and may feel confident to challenge lecturers and provide them with feedback to help improve the learning process.

Additional resources:
CTL/CPD – Online Facilitation courses


The remote-teaching period offers faculty the opportunity to think about assessment in a different way. Assessing students remotely is a challenge, the purpose of the guidelines is to share best practices and tools to help. These guidelines should be read in conjunction with Faculty Assessment Plans (FAP).

  • Read the latest information on assessment at the NWU

Important Information regarding Assessmentwill be updated on an ongoing basis, as CTL colleagues work to answer emerging questions and offer advice and recommendations.

  • Policies, Rules & Guidelines

Despite the challenges we are faced with during these uncertain times, we should aim to maintain the principles and guidelines of assessment as set out in the Teaching, Learning and Assessment Policy, to be read with the Rules for Teaching, Learning and Assessment.

Equally important are the General Academic Rules (A-Rules) as well as the Faculty-specific Rules, and the respective Faculty Assessment Plans (FAPs).

  • Assessment design

The main approach to assessment used in the remote teaching and learning phase, will still continue to be continuous assessment. However, there are some modules that will make use of invigilated assessments as part of regulations from statutory bodies, and these will take place according to the approved and scheduled assessment timetable and in COVID-compliant venues.

The NWU TL glossary define continuous assessment as follows: A structured process by which the quality of a student’s work is judged by various pieces of evidence as submitted during a semester or year in a specific module, and not only by one final exam.

Le Grange and Reddy (1998:11) defines continuous assessment as the assessment of the whole learner on an ongoing basis over a period of time, where cumulative judgements of the learners’ abilities in specific areas are made in order to facilitate further positive learning’.


For more information regarding Continuous assessment - during Covid-19 and the Development of Continuous Assessment Opportunities please access the webinar presentation and recording available on the joinable CTL Staff Development site, on eFundi. (You need to log in toeFundi to access these resources).

In order to develop a strategy for the assessments in your module, you first need to consider exactly why it is you are assessing students and examine what it is you are assessing. Only then are you in a position to think about when that assessment should take place and ultimately to consider the most appropriate method or methods of assessment to use – the how.
Consider using this template as you plan your assessments to ensure valid and reliable assessment Planning Template.


Based on the updated FAP and your module assessment plan you should vary your assessment methods and provide multiple means of assessments. Here are some examples of alternative assessment methods in eFundi that may be considered.

The most commonly used eFundi assessment tools are Assignments and Tests & Quizzes. Visit the new Test & Quizzes Tutorial site for up to date information on how to administer online tests. Other resources include the Designing effective Multiple Choice Questions, eFundi Assignments and eFundi Tools for student collaboration webinar presentations and recordings available on the joinable CTL Staff Development eFundi site.

  • Academic Integrity

Turnitin is also useful in assisting you in identifying similarities found in a student work and other text in the Turnitin repository. Read more on the NWU Turnitin Tutorial page .

Academic integrity resources:

The new PDF marker tool enable lecturers to mark assignments, submitted in PDF format, electronically (on screen). For more information access the PDF marker tool tutorial.

  • Moderation



Continuous professional development opportunities

CTL offers continuous professional development opportunities in the form of in-house webinars and online courses on a variety of platforms.

Visit the CTL Continuous Professional Development opportunities webpage to see the webinars and training opportunities on offer. Register to attend CTL Webinars on Libcal. If you have missed a webinar, visit the CTL Staff Development eFundi site to access all webinar and training opportunity recordings. The video below provides an overview of the resources available on the CTL Staff Development eFundi site.

A selection of Resources is also available on the joinable CTL Staff Development site on eFundi. If you still need to join the CTL Staff Development site, see this tutorial on how to join a joinable site.