Create A Plan

With the possibility of needing to close the school building, faculty need to prepare themselves for interruptions to normal class schedules. Waiting for a campus shutdown before adopting the necessary tools and strategies will make the situation even worse. These steps will help you to switch seamlessly to a remote teaching platform.

Learn how to use them now before a situation arises where the campus has to be closed, not after. 

The University has two pages which will be particularly helpful in your planning:


Issues to Address Possible Solutions & Tools

Make sure you have access to the following resources for working from home:

  • Accessing voicemail
  • Accessing Law School email
  • Accessing Office 365
  • Accessing your network shared drive via VPN
  • Accessing Library resources via VPN
  • Voice Mail
  • Email
  • Office 365
  • VPN
  • Northwestern Law Library

Establish a clear mode of communication with your students.

  • Tell your students where to find course information and how they can contact you.
  • Email
  • Canvas

Verify that you can receive Northwestern Law emails.

  • We have a number of systems that can only send messages to NU accounts. To ensure you don't miss any important announcements, check the NU account frequently or set it to forward emails to an account you use regularly.
  • Email
  • Email Forwarding
Post your syllabus in Canvas under the Syllabus tab or email your syllabus to your students.
  • Email
  • Canvas

Publish your Canvas course and use some basic features such as:

  • Add course materials, e.g., link to course resources, upload PDFs, etc.
  • Create class-wide announcements
  • Enable online submissions using the Assignments feature.
  • Canvas

Decide how you will distribute documents and readings during a disruption.

  • Collaborate with students or colleagues on Google Drive apps such as Docs, Sheets, and Slides
  • Back up essential course instructional materials or convert them so they can be shared digitally
  • Make PDFs from hard copies and convert hard copy readings to PDF when applicable
  • Email
  • Box
  • Google Drive

Designate a centralized place to collect student submissions.

  • Use the Assignments feature on Canvas or create a shared folder on Google Drive to accept student submissions online.
  • Canvas
  • Google Drive

Use Zoom and Canvas for class discussion in a disruption.

  • Use Zoom web conferencing for features such as polling and breakout rooms
  • Have students respond to a discussion prompt on Canvas to take discussion outside of the classroom
  • Canvas Discussions
  • Zoom

Capture your lecture content on Zoom for students to watch remotely.

  • Zoom

Hold class and/or office hours virtually using Zoom.

  • Zoom

Determine how your methods for evaluating student learning will be moved to a digital space.

  • Canvas Quizzes

Use Canvas to provide students with grades and feedback on their work in the event of an emergency.

  • Canvas