Elena Caselli

World Languages and Literatures, Undergraduate

Elena Caselli: What I've learned about remote teaching

February 19, 2021

When the COVID pandemic forced SFU to go online, Professor Elena Caselli, a term lecturer of Italian in the Department of World Languages and Literatures, was not ready for the change.

“Let's say that remote teaching demands an entirely different approach and ad hoc designed courses,” Caselli says. “It was extremely draining for me, trying to deliver online the same course I had designed for in-person instruction.”

But by the beginning of the fall session Caselli had adapted and was ready to deliver a course specifically designed for the remote environment.

“I learned that ‘less is more’ and frills often get in the way of effective learning,” she says. “Definitely the flipped class method that I started using during the pandemic will remain the main characteristic of my courses.”

After the pandemic Caselli intends to keep the asynchronous method of online lectures for some portions of her courses. She’ll also distribute the workload between herself and her students more rationally.

Caselli’s students have told her that they miss in person interactions with their classmates and professors, although she has noticed that remote learning has made in-class engagement easier for some who feel less shy about asking a question over Zoom versus raising their hand in a full lecture hall.

Read the full version of Professor Caselli's interview to learn more.