Return to: Section 8. Student Support Services
Please note that these are university expectations. Programs or courses may have more stringent guidelines in some areas, so students and faculty should refer to the course syllabus for the guidelines and policies for this specific course.
Walden expects faculty members to be reasonably accessible to students. The expectation of reasonable accessibility does not mean 24/7 access of faculty members to students. However, it does mean that students receive quality feedback on course submissions within a reasonable time frame.
All assignments and communication should be conducted within the learning platform to support consistency and documentation of learning outcomes.
Faculty Members’ Contact Information
Faculty members are required to state their Walden e-mail addresses in the appropriate area in course platforms and in faculty directories, and in correspondence with students. Faculty members may, at their discretion, offer students their contact phone numbers, but are not required to do so.
Faculty Members’ Feedback
Faculty members are to return graded classroom assignments that are submitted by the due date to students within 10 calendar days of the assignments’ due dates for coursework in classrooms, and within 14 calendar days of the due date for manuscript drafts (including KAMs, theses, doctoral studies, and dissertations) in research forums. Faculty members are to provide a grade and also written, formative feedback on assignments. Assignments that are submitted late may be graded with feedback in the time frame of the instructor. Late assignments may receive minimal feedback other than the grade. The faculty member is expected to give priority to assignments submitted on time.
Faculty Members’ Availability
Faculty members are expected to be available to students outside the course discussion areas and in addition to providing substantive feedback on assignments and discussion posts. Faculty members will publish their availability to students through course syllabi, instructor information in the classroom, and/or other appropriate documents. The university suggests regular and predictable availability, such as online office hours or regular online chats.
Faculty members may have short-term absences when arranged with their program director or designee or associate dean and published to students.
Faculty members are expected to respond to informational questioning and course-related student e-mails within 48 hours, excepting holidays and weekends. Responses to e-mails that require more content analysis may extend beyond 48 hours, although faculty members should communicate to students within 48 hours, excepting holidays and weekends, that they are working on the issue.
Faculty Members’ Discussion Participation
Walden recognizes that online discussion can serve diverse curricular and instructional purposes, such as student seminars, role-playing, and review of draft assignments. These purposes yield varied requirements for students’ and faculty members’ presence in discussion areas. Walden requires that these varied requirements be explicitly communicated to students and that expectations communicated be fulfilled by both faculty members and students.
Walden courses are developed with varied curricular designs and varied instructional strategies in order to meet specific learning goals. Faculty members are expected to continuously monitor online course discussions and to post substantively to discussions as governed by the specific instructional objective of the course in a given week. Course syllabi and discussion prompts are to indicate to students the role faculty members will play in discussion, as well as the timeliness, quantity, quality, and frequency expectations for students’ participation.