ONLINE @ MTSU – Fall 2023

ONLINE @ MTSU – Fall 2023

A Newsletter for MTSU Faculty



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Dear MTSU colleagues,

Dr. Trey Martindale, COLO

Welcome to Fall 2023, and another great year of opportunities at MTSU. We look forward to helping you succeed.

Online enrollment is at an all-time high, with over 2800 completely online students, and over 7500 partially online students. More than 13% of MTSU students are fully online. And over half of all MTSU students took at least one online course this past year. Online credit hour production and enrollment were again at all-time highs and have increased for several consecutive years. Over 24% of all student credit hours last year were from online courses, including 59% of summer credit hours.

Thanks to the hard work of our faculty, staff, and administrators, we have increased from 16 (two years ago) to now 38 completely online degree programs. Our goal is to ensure MTSU is ready and available to provide an education for every student who is seeking to learn, regardless of their geographic location.

This past year MTSU Online funded 28 full time temporary (FTT) instructors for 19 departments across the university. These instructors are trained in online teaching and give significant help to departments who are serving online students.

In terms of student support, MTSU Online provides personal assistance to hundreds of students via phone, email, and videoconference meetings. Live and online tutoring is a popular service we offer, as well as advising help, counseling services, and help navigating the online course environment.

We support faculty through a range of services including course design help, faculty training workshops, individual consultations, and extensive web-based resources.

Our instructional designers (IDs) are key resources for faculty as they develop and deliver engaging learning environments. This year our IDs helped design 88 new online courses and redesign an additional 65 courses. MTSU now has a portfolio of over 750 well-designed online courses to contribute to student access and success. I am pleased to report that we are working to hire a fourth instructional designer to increase our faculty support services.

MTSU Online is a key contributor to the President’s Quest 2025 initiative--specifically the mandate to increase online, hybrid, and off-site program offerings, and to increase curricular flexibility. Online is a key strategic initiative for MTSU, as we strive to bring the resources of MTSU to the citizens of Tennessee and beyond.

For 2023 MTSU was recognized for the second consecutive year by Newsweek as one of its "Top Online Colleges". While we appreciate the recognition, our goal is to continue to be recognized by our students as providing effective instruction in a way that meets their educational and career aspirations. This kind of recognition motivates us as we serve MTSU.

We look forward to serving you this year!


Trey Martindale

Trey Martindale
Professor and Chief Online Learning Officer, MTSU Online


Panopto Changes
As you may have heard, Panopto will now longer house videos indefinitely. At the end of each semester, any Panopto files not saved to “My Folder” will be deleted. In addition, all Panopto files from previous semesters will be deleted on or before September 8th. To prevent losing your videos, you can save them to your “My Folder” area in Panopto or download the files as MP4s and upload to your OneDrive. For step-by-step instructions visit Panopto Help.


MTSU Online is Growing
We are excited to announce the addition of two members to the MTSU Online team. Charlene Huffman is our new administrative assistant, and we can already feel the impact of her expertise. As the department continues to grow, she will play a valuable role in that expansion, helping us stay connected, organized, and efficient. Learn more about her in our Staff Spotlight section.

Dr. Tim Oneal has joined our Instructional Design team. He brings a wealth of experience in instructional design and technology. His expertise will allow MTSU Online to offer services not previously available, and we guarantee you will want to see what he can do! As we grow, he will play a valuable role in supporting our faculty, bringing knowledge and skills that will be a vital part of enhancing the quality of our online courses. Learn more about him in our Staff Spotlight section.

Using OneDrive to Caption Videos!
Using Panopto, Zoom, PowerPoint, YouTube or some other software to caption your videos? With the MS 365 integration, there is no need to use those options. Now you can use OneDrive! When making videos, save the MP4 to OneDrive. Once saved, open the video, and select the Transcribe and Captions option under the video settings (the first icon on the right side of the screen). The captions will automatically generate – the accuracy is very good – and are easily editable. If you have questions, please contact us!

Process of adding captioning to a video file stored on OneDrive


Karen Hein, Kim Godwin, and Tara Perrin present at D2L Conference

MTSU Online Presents at D2L Fusion Conference 2023
This summer our Instructional Design (ID) Team – Karen Hein, Kim Godwin (former ID), and Tara Perrin – were featured speakers at the D2L Fusion Conference held in Anaheim, CA. Our ID team presented on a variety of different topics and in various formats – formal presentations, 5-minute flare, and an on-demand video presentation. Subjects included how to give students choice in assessment and what that means for the faculty member, a progress update on how we are utilizing H5P on our campus, and the tips and tricks we’ve learned while using H5P to help others not make the same mistakes. In addition to presenting, our IDs attended several sessions to expand their knowledge on online best / promising practices, pedagogical decision-making, and faculty strategies for using D2L most effectively and efficiently. We appreciate our ID team for representing MTSU Online proudly.


MTSU Online collaborates with the LT&ITC each semester to host virtual workshops with an online focus. Please see our upcoming events below. All MTSU Online workshops are recorded and posted to our MTSU Online YouTube Channel. We hope you will subscribe!

MTSU Online & D2L: Updates Fall 2023 Edition
August 29th (Tuesday) 11:30am-12:30pm
Cha, Cha, Cha, Cha, Changes...

Have you heard MTSU Online has a new Instructional Designer (ID)? What about the D2L updates to streamline the faculty experience? If not, this session is for you! Join MTSU Online in conjunction with the LT&ITC to meet our latest ID and learn how the assessment tools in D2L are now more faculty friendly. Plus, learn an easier, more secure way for students to connect to you without the hassle of email and new, easy way to caption videos. Time permitting we'll have a refresher on using Manage Dates and creating a mid-term grade.

MEET H5P! Maximizing Engagement using Educational Technology
September 19th (Tuesday) 11:30am-12:30pm
Are you new to the institution and looking for ways to engage your students in the classroom? Are you a faculty member who has heard about H5P but haven’t had the time to check it out?

MEET H5P! is your opportunity to learn about this exciting technology and the ways it can increase connectivity, engagement, and interactivity securely within D2L. Whether you teach online or in the classroom, we hope you will join MTSU Online in conjunction with the LT&ITC to learn how H5P can enhance the MTSU student experience.

To register for these or any of the other faculty development opportunities offered through the LT&ITC please visit the LT&ITC Workshop Calendar.


Dr. Tim Oneal
Hello, I am Dr. Tim Oneal, Ph.D. I'm delighted to introduce myself as the newest addition to the MTSU Online Instructional Design Team. Originally from Murfreesboro, TN, my journey has led me through institutions like Austin Peay State University, the University of Louisville, and the University of North Dakota, where I served as an instructional designer. With advanced degrees in fields such as Instructional Design and Educational Leadership, I have consistently aimed to marry academic excellence with hands-on practicality.

Beyond the confines of academia, I've channeled my passion for storytelling into producing documentary films and commercials, especially for nonprofit organizations. This dual dedication to quality education and meaningful community service has been a cornerstone in my professional and personal pursuits.

I look forward to the opportunity to share, learn, and collaborate with you!


Charlene Huffman
Hello. I am Charlene Huffman, administrative assistant to Dr. Trey Martindale. My family and I have recently relocated to Tennessee from Ohio, so my journey at MTSU has just begun.

I graduated from The Ohio State University (Go Bucks!) with an undergraduate degree in the Science of Agriculture. My focus was Agribusiness, and my minor was Equine Sciences as, at the time, my husband and I owned a 25-acre horse farm where we raised Morgans. I began my career at the local elementary school when my son started kindergarten. I was a substitute teacher for a year and then a one-on-one paraprofessional for a special needs student for two years. For the last 10 years, I held the position of administrative assistant in the front office. Along the way, I became a self-taught cake decorator. I have been making custom cakes, cookies, and desserts for about 22 years.

My husband and I have been married for 24 years. We have two sons. My stepson Nick is 30 and lives in Colorado. He serves as a 911 Coordinator/Dispatch Supervisor for Chaffee County. Our son, Mason, is 18 and will begin the Pro-pilot program here at MTSU this semester. As a family, we enjoy road trips, hiking, water sports, and woodworking. We have one dog, Bentley, a German Shepard mutt rescue. We adopted him when he was 2 and he is now 17! My family has built two homes together and we are getting ready to begin our third. We are excited to be in Tennessee and look forward to what MTSU holds in store for our family.

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Thank you for your interest in Online @ MTSU.
Please get in contact with us if we can be of any assistance with online teaching.
Have a great semester!

This biannual newsletter is produced by MTSU Online.
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