Office of Instructional Innovation

The Office of Instructional Innovation partners with instructors in the College of Education to create high-quality learning experiences that benefit all students. To accomplish this goal, we provide instructional design consulting, advise on teaching techniques, help select appropriate educational technologies, and develop clear and engaging learning resources. 

Whether you’re new to college teaching or an experienced faculty member, we want you to be successful. We invite you to work with us for all your teaching and educational technology needs by emailing

Services Offered

  • Consulting on course design, course redesign, and academic program development, including face-to-face, online, and hybrid learning scenarios
  • Design, implementation, and support for social and experiential learning
  • Development of meaningful student learning assessments and assignments
  • Production of digital course resources, including multimedia and interactive content presentation
  • Design and development of custom learning tools
  • Facilitation of professional learning for faculty, including online resources, communities of practice, and technology workshops
  • Support for digital literacy assessment and instruction across the college
  • Responsive support on the use of Canvas, Zoom, Panopto, Qualtrics, Poll Everywhere, and other educational technology resources


Quick Tips for Teaching

  • Strategies for Supporting Absent Students

    Strategies for Supporting Absent Students

    With the increase in on-campus teaching and learning, we’d like to pass along some suggestions for negotiating student absences. We recommend that you continue maintaining flexible attendance policies and consider options other than lecture capture for students who miss class. Combining the use of student note-takers and a single five-minute video recording per class session, here’s an approach that’s quick, easy, and effective.


Professional Development Opportunities

  • New Instructor Guide

    Created to help new (and current) instructors effectively prepare for their courses, this guide includes various resources related to policies, course preparation materials, instructional technologies, and more. The guide can be explored comprehensively or selectively as needed. Here is an outline of the content detailed in this guide: 

    • Adding students to your course 
    • Using Class Info Pages (CLIPS) 
    • Supporting students with accommodations 
    • Designing your syllabus 
    • Reporting behavior concerns 
    • Navigating Canvas 
    • Using Zoom 
    • Incorporating Panopto 
    • Integrating Poll Everywhere  

    The New Instructor Guide is available for any member of the UT-Austin community (e.g., professors, assistant instructors, teaching assistants). We especially encourage new instructors to check out the guide as they map out their courses. 

    Learn more

  • Faculty Working Groups

    Working groups provide opportunities for instructors to share successes and innovations, troubleshoot teaching challenges, and engage in a collaborative learning process to become even better teachers and users of educational technology. The groups are small, personalized to your interests, and typically meet once per month. Each group is facilitated by a staff member from the Office of Instructional Innovation. 

    Contact OI2 to join.

  • CAMP OI2: Teaching in an Online/Hybrid Environment

    Designed to prepare instructors to teach online and hybrid courses, this collection of 15-minute self-paced modules provides an excellent starting point for those who are new to these approaches. Topics covered include:

    • Organizing Online Learning Experiences,
    • Building Online Community,
    • Presenting Information (Live) Effectively Online,
    • Facilitating Discussion Online,
    • Scaling Online Instruction, and
    • Assessing Learning Online.

    Camp OI2 is available for any member of the UT-Austin community. Participants receive virtual badges for the successful completion of each module.

    Get started

  • OI2 Training: Preservice Teacher Preparation

    Designed to ready preservice teachers to work with K-12 students in online environments, these 15-minute self-paced modules introduce fundamental frameworks for understanding how we communicate and learn in virtual spaces. Introductory modules include:

    • Computer-Mediated Communication
    • Online Learning & K-12 Learners — while examples come from younger learners, the lessons can be applied to college students
  • Podcast Series: Learning from Texas Education Innovators

    This podcast from the Office of Instructional Innovation covers teaching, learning, and innovation. Faculty experts share what it is like to conduct cutting-edge research, how an innovative course came into being, or what happens when they try a new teaching strategy for the first time.

  • Digital Literacy Repository

    The Digital Literacy Repository is a collection of resources for anyone interested in learning how to smartly navigate the digital age.

    Learn more


Teaching with Technology

We have curated the following collection of tutorials to help you become productive with tools such as Canvas, Zoom, and Panopto.

  • Canvas: a learning management system used by faculty and students to access and manage online learning materials and communications.
  • Zoom: an easy, reliable cloud platform for video conferencing, webinars, and classes. 
  • Panopto: a video platform that allows faculty to record and share videos within and outside of Canvas.

We also have developed two tools that extend the capabilities of Canvas to create new opportunities for learning.

Logo for the Journal App developed by the Office of Instructional Innovation

OI2 Canvas Tool: Journal

The journal app provides a blog-like experience where each student has a personal space for reflections, reading responses, and other writing assignments. Journals can be private (shared only between the student and instructor) or public (shared with other members of the class). Learn more about the journal tool

Logo for the Chat App developed by the Office of Instructional Innovation

OI2 Canvas Tool: Chat

Our chat app enables real-time, small-group discussions using text. Transcripts of each chat session are recorded and made available to the instructor. The app supports variation in how discourse occurs in a classroom. Learn more about our chat tool

About Us

Lucas Horton

Lucas Horton, Director

Lucas holds a Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction with a specialization in Learning Technologies. His interests include the application of web and interactive multimedia technologies to support face-to-face, blended, and online instruction.

Karen French

Karen French, Associate Director

Karen holds a Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction with a specialization in Instructional Technology and a master’s degree in Anthropology. She is also a certified teacher and taught high school Latin for seven years.

Rui Zeng

Rui Zeng, Instructional Designer

Rui holds a Ph.D. in Instructional Technology and an M.S. in Educational Technology.

Contact Us

Email or call us for any questions you may have or to make an appointment with an OI2 member.
SZB 2.318

Director: Lucas Horton

@oi2ut on Twitter