Robert Morris University

RMU Workshops For K-12 Teachers Bolster Online Instruction Skills

Professional education techniques and tips for managing virtual classrooms under Covid-19.


To help schoolteachers deliver online lessons effectively this fall, Robert Morris University has begun offering customized workshops for schools in the region.

Some 200 local teachers in grades K-12 from three local public and private schools have already attended the virtual two- or three-day workshops, led by RMU faculty in the Department of Education. Subject matter is adjusted based on a school’s needs and focuses on video lecture techniques, discussion boards and chat rooms, narrating presentations, and targeted education websites, along with the theoretical foundations that allow teachers to successfully apply those skills in their own classrooms.

Bobbi-Ann Barnes, assistant superintendent of Deer Lakes School District, said the workshops were helpful to her district's teachers.

 “I received many emails from the teachers with positive feedback,” Barnes said. “I appreciated that the instructors were able to deliver the sessions virtually. Both RMU professors shared best practices for the teachers to support them in delivering instruction online.”

Tim Plocinik, principal of Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Senior High School in Moon Township, said his school’s teachers benefited from reviewing strategies for online instruction.

“Working with RMU to provide the workshops in August afforded our teachers additional time to try out these new tools and develop a comfort level as they prepare for the start of the school year,” Plocinik said.

The customizable workshops are derived from curriculum in the university’s 12-credit certificate in Online Teaching, which prepares teachers for the Online Instruction Endorsement through the Pennsylvania Department of Education.

“RMU works closely with organizations to find the ideal content and delivery model to develop employee skills and help organizations meet their goals,” said Derya Jacobs, senior vice president for corporate relations and strategic initiatives at RMU. “We took the same approach with the school districts. Leveraging RMU’s excellence in online education, our team of faculty experts developed these customized programs to meet the needs of each school district.”