Assistant Director, Instructional Design

What impact did the pandemic have on traditional learning and development? What changes did Learning & Organization Development make to meet the needs of the Duke community in a remote/hybrid environment?

The pandemic has left its mark on every aspect of our work; it has impacted our way of life, our daily commutes and the ways that we work, communicate and learn. It was important for L&OD to remain present and quickly adapt to change while introducing new ways of learning to the Duke community that stemmed beyond the classroom. New work protocols forced us to create innovative measures and strategies that supported and encouraged learning and professional development during times of high stress and change. The biggest impact was redesigning classroom learning to fit a variety of virtual training options, to include asynchronous (self-paced) learning, blended learning and virtual instructor-led learning. In the redevelopment of our classroom content, we established ways to engage colleagues remotely through already existing software like Cisco WebEx, Zoom and Microsoft Teams which were all available from Duke OIT.

With the need for connectivity, resilience and virtual team management at an all-time high, we noticed early on that the enterprise would benefit from simultaneously learning about the changes that they were facing while in transition to a remote environment. We developed and delivered virtual content on several topics to include, "Communicating in Times of Crisis", "Managing Virtual Teams", "Reducing Stress" and "Thriving through Times of Uncertainty." The courses were designed with several points of interactivity throughout to encourage collaboration, networking and self-reflection through anonymous annotations, chat, independent work study, and self-paced pre-learning activities.

With much of our Duke community still remote, accessibility is of utmost importance; therefore, in 2022, we will offer 64 professional development offerings; three of those offerings will be in-person and we would take a hybrid approach with our cohort-based programs designed for leadership. We are also on schedule to virtually deliver 41 technology development offerings. Our current virtual learning catalog consists of 30 professional development and 16 technology development unique courses with content for individual contributors, first-time managers, middle-management and senior leadership.