Responsibilities of DE and its Academic Partners

In an effort to strengthen the partnerships that we have with campus programs, Distance Education (DE) at Appalachian seeks to formalize a partnership between academic departments and our office, setting firm expectations of roles and responsibilities.

We share an obligation to provide online and off-campus students with an experience that is consistent with the level, nature and mission of Appalachian State. DE recognizes faculty’s contributions to teaching, research and service are why so many choose Appalachian State. To aid in administering online and off-campus programs, DE has responsive teams in place designed to help with marketing, recruiting and advising new students as well as providing support to current students. Our goal is to help you share your knowledge and expertise effectively so our students have a great experience and so do you.

Have questions, ideas or feedback? Please contact us via our Nimbility Index or email! We will use your comments to start conversations, develop procedures and better support our students.

DE Teams

Academic Partners

Administration

DE’s administration team can help you with the necessary approvals to get your program prepared to enroll new students.

Our administration team is available to: 

  • Collaborate, prepare and submit the documentation required by the UNC System Office and the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) ensuring that COC criteria and procedures are followed with respect to any distance education activities
  • Monitor applicant numbers and work with you to greenlight programs
  • Provide site agreements and establish site contact information for faculty teaching at off-campus locations
  • Reserve rooms for events, sessions, etc., at off-campus locations
  • Disseminate information to current students about class cancellations and site closures

Marketing and Recruiting

DE’s marketing and recruiting team is your professional consultative partner in developing and implementing plans and strategies for reaching potential students for your programs.

Our marketing and recruiting team is available to: 

  • Help you identify your target audience
  • Provide market viability research on programs under development
  • Explore a broad spectrum of inbound and outbound marketing options
  • Collaborate on marketing plans for your program(s)
  • Design brochures, flyers and other forms of marketing collateral consistent with Appalachian brand guidelines
  • Optimize DE’s website to ensure maximum search engine visibility
  • Create and disseminate electronic communications
  • Partner to create student testimonials and/or success stories and videos
  • Promote your programs via DE’s social media accounts
  • Work in conjunction with you to identify and attend events, fairs and conferences where potential new students will be in attendance
  • Distribute information about your programs with our advising partners in North Carolina’s community college system 

Prospective Student and Applicant Support

DE will maintain consistent communication with prospects and applicants so they feel informed and empowered in every step of their educational journey.

Our prospective student and applicant support team is available to:

  • Manage and respond to new inquiries about your program
  • Advise prospects and applicants on lower-division coursework
  • Review undergraduate applications for program-entry requirements
  • Follow up with applicants to point of completion, troubleshooting any issue to facilitate application completion
  • Deliver up-to-the minute reports on inquiries, applications and enrollments
  • Work in conjunction with you, as well as other partners on campus, to develop communication plans to give prospects, applicants and admitted students the information they need about your programs
  • Coordinate, as necessary, to admit applicants and serve as a point of contact for completed applicants until a cohort has been confirmed

State Authorization

The regulations surrounding state authorization are extremely complex, which is why DE has staff dedicated to understanding and providing information to faculty, staff and prospective students. Please contact Adryona Nelson for more information.

Student Support

Ensuring our online and off-campus students feel connected to Appalachian State is a key motivator for DE. 

Our student support team is available to: 

  • Provide registration support to students, communicating registration dates and any other pertinent registration information
  • Advise, in partnerships with General Education and Transfer Services at Appalachian, lower-division coursework, helping all students get the classes they need outside of Appalachian
  • Deliver non-curricular orientation seminars to all new students
  • Offer guidance to students on obtaining permits and other special enrollment forms
  • Promote the use of on-campus and off-campus resources to current students

Academic Partners

As a DE academic partner, you are responsible for all academic decisions, including academic advising within your program, course scheduling, instructor recruitment and assignment and other related functions. 

Below we offer some best practices we feel will aid in creating the best possible student experience:

Starting a new program or altering an existing one

Launching a new program (or making changes to a current one) takes time, pulling together numerous resources. DE wants to offer you our complete suite of services. To do so, we ask to be engaged early in the planning process.

When launching a new online or off-campus program, contact DE so we can arrange an informational meeting where we can:

  • Meet the teams who will be supporting this new program
  • Establish timelines and begin appropriate approvals
  • Set expectations
  • Discuss market research
  • Outline a marketing plan reasonable for attaining enrollment goals
  • Familiarize each other with prospective student inquiry management

When making changes to an existing program, including mode of delivery and location, contact DE so we can discuss new strategies, timelines and expectations.

Marketing a program

DE offers you marketing consultation and plan development. DE will search for opportunities that offer maximum exposure and lead generation for your programs. As DE’s marketing budget allows, DE will make ad purchases, design and print materials as well as attend events.

If there are additional marketing opportunities the department or college would like to pursue, please contact DE so we may be able to strategize efforts.

DE may identify opportunities where the department can invest in additional marketing that includes paid advertisement and event travel. DE considers various factors when making this recommendation, such as the need and demand for a program, the department’s resources for responding to prospective students, admission requirements, the potential to reach new students and enrollment goals.

Should both the department and DE agree, DE will develop an addendum to our shared marketing plan that outlines department responsibilities. 

Program Maintenance

Once a program is launched, there will be other responsibilities you will need to oversee, including:

  • Liaise with representatives from other departments or colleges that are expected to contribute courses to the program
  • Coordinate with DE to host informational sessions to recruit new students
  • Provide DE with two-year course schedules and headcount estimates
  • Ensure all faculty teaching in the program understands required courses must be taught in the way and within the timeframe as approved (Note: Any deviations from approved protocols must be communicated to DE)
  • Submit textbook orders for all classes to the ASU Bookstore
  • Copy DE on communication to prospects and applicants, thus enabling DE to track and manage contact
  • Indicate to DE both the minimum number of admissions required to go forward with a cohort and the maximum number of students to be accepted into a particular cohort 
  • Inform DE of the decision to cancel or delay a cohort start due to insufficient applications. When appropriate, work with DE staff to inform applicants of the decision and any options that might be available to them
  • Work with DE to review and approve requests by campus or other students to be added to existing cohorts or to enroll in existing DE classes
  • Provide, or arrange for, academic advising of your students 
  • Set the schedule of courses for the cohort as described in the approval documents 
  • Inform assigned faculty about Distance Learning Library Services
  • Manage any student issues related to code of conduct and academic integrity