DELTA strives to positively impact the NC State community by providing excellent support to students, faculty and staff and leading the way for innovative learning. As the Wolfpack at home, across the country and abroad weathered a year full of challenges, we kept working hard to ensure that students and educators were prepared to succeed, felt connected to each other, and engaged with their education in meaningful ways. Along the way, we not only continued to deliver on our promise to provide high-quality education to all learners, but also led the digital transformation of teaching and learning at NC State.
Explore these highlights to read stories and learn how we worked toward our strategic goals while backing the Wolfpack and leading innovation.
DELTA Goal 1: Leverage learning technologies to improve student success.
[Aligns with University Goals 1 and 2]
- Awarded $227,019 toward DELTA Grants and course redesigns including a number of Rapid Design Grants. Our grant work impacted 22 courses and thousands of students.
- Invested $30,000 in our DELTA Faculty Fellows to recognize faculty who are exemplars in teaching with technology. Faculty Fellows work collaboratively with each other and DELTA staff to support other faculty across multiple disciplines in effectively using campus technologies.
- Developed DELTA Express Grants, three semester-long grants dedicated to enhancing teaching and learning by applying technology in innovative, collaborative ways. DELTA Express Grants include the Virtual Tours, Rapid Design and Instructional Tools grants. The first grants will be awarded fall 2021.
- Met regularly with NC State Libraries and NC State Stores staff to discuss cost reduction initiatives as part of the Academic Materials Affordability Committee. Distributed two rounds of Open Textbook grants, supporting a total of 14 courses which will adopt open textbooks for the fall 2021 semester, providing approximately $190,000 in savings to students in textbook prices.
- Facilitated 136 workshops with 1,314 attendees, as well as 137 attendees in our Summer Shorts 2020 program. Additionally, our seven self-paced, asynchronous workshops attracted 158 participants. We taught three workshops for the Graduate School with a total of 151 participants. Also, we implemented two new 30-minute workshop series.
- Hosted our annual unconference, DELTA-Con, which had 88 participants from around the state.
- Provided 157 consultations as part of our Instructional Consultation service. Successfully provided training, support and consultations to more than 1,400 NC State instructors that have impacted thousands of students.
- Supported 25 courses participating in official Quality Matters (QM) reviews and internal reviews to receive course certification and/or recognition, which contributes to increased positive rankings from the U.S. News and World Report. Additionally, 95 faculty and staff completed Quality Matters professional development courses or workshops this year. Allocated $95,575 plus staff time for this program to reflect an increasing amount of support from last year.
- Resolved 6,338 incidents, a 29% increase in call volume over the same period in the previous year. While this increase is primarily due to faculty and students’ continued reliance on remote teaching and learning during the COVID-19 pandemic, all courses now have a deeper digital footprint and rely more on technology and technology support.
- Launched assessment and evaluation reports for selected courses and technology implementations that illustrate student achievement, satisfaction, and/or teaching efficiencies.
- Provided resources for instructors to employ alternative assignments and assessments in the absence of in-person exam proctoring.
- Completed seven DELTA Grants project assessments.
- Continued to engage in data-driven research. Based on the initial phase of a study Comparing Online and Face-to-Face (F2F) Instruction at NC State using secondary data, our Postdoctoral Research Scholar Dan Spencer engaged in data collection to build on our current findings to help us understand and later publish why traditional undergraduate students in F2F courses perform better than those in online sections of the same course(s) at NC State.
DELTA Goal 2: Lead the research, implementation and support of innovative, scalable and reliable learning technologies and methodologies.
[Aligns with University Goals 1 and 3]
- Continued to invest in a robust, reliable and redundant systems infrastructure that can accommodate the increase in user demands.
- Invested more than $1.3 million in technology infrastructure to support our enterprise technology services.
- Partnered with the Division of Academic and Student Affairs to deliver secure telehealth options for students during the COVID-19 pandemic. This option will continue to be used to provide students with flexible physical and mental health/counseling appointments.
- Added enterprise-level support and integration for Gradescope, a tool for enhancing the quality, consistency and efficiency of grading for large classes, and WeBWorK, a mathematics-based quizzing tool. A variety of other enhancements, additions and updates to the WolfWare toolkit are documented in the WolfWare roadmap.
- Transitioned from Mediasite to Panopto, which involved moving more than 112,000 hours of content and 133,000 presentations from one system to the other, as well as purchasing and deploying new hardware, updating training and supporting materials, and communicating to faculty about this change.
- Further developed and implemented remote-based local recording procedures to ensure that lectures were captured using local classroom facilities while faculty taught remotely. Decommissioned the Polycom infrastructure and deployed Panopto in the DELTA classrooms.
- Invested approximately $1 million in hardware and software for lecture capture services with the goal to equip all 110 classrooms and other spaces to record lectures. More than 52,000 unique users logged on to view NC State course lectures and presentations 3,567,596 times. The amount of content viewed was more than 809,770 hours, which amounts to a total of 33,740 full 24-hour days. In addition, total views increased by 82% while live views increased 263% from the previous fiscal year. Real-time users increased tenfold (1,015%).
- Continued to build on previous successes and lessons learned in developing immersive technology productions and solutions while driving innovation and gaining expertise in new areas. We made sustained efforts in the exploration of augmented, mixed and virtual reality (XR). We also saw a number of DELTA Grants that directly asked for or benefitted from an investigation or development of immersive technology solutions.
- Completed 27 unique projects with 210 deliverables, including a number of learning videos, “how-to” videos, 360° VR and AR projects, and underwater videography and drone photography along with many subject matter expert interviews.
- Introduced the Short, Nimble, Asynchronous Pedagogy Series (known as WolfSNAPS) — quick, focused, flexible asynchronous training in best practices for online course design.
DELTA Goal 3: Leverage learning technologies to support Outreach and Engagement activities.
[Aligns with University Goals 4 and 5]
- Made a number of improvements to WolfWare Outreach (WWO), including adding the NC State Brickyard account system to REPORTER to allow non-Unity participants to create guest accounts when registering, automating the account creation process to accept the REPORTER data feed, and improving the login process by allowing students to use their Brickyard credentials.
- Offered 345 WWO courses to 15,884 enrollments, a 148% increase in participation from the previous year, garnering $107,608. Hosted 78 programs and 15 units/organizations.
- Continued a formal partnership that shares 50% time of DELTA’s Associate Vice Provost for Marketing and Partnership Development (MPD) and 25% time of DELTA’s Associate Director of Marketing Operations and Strategy with the McKimmon Center for Extension and Continuing Education to help the organization with best practices for marketing, new program development, technology implementation, strategies for identifying new target audiences and the development of new offerings. This strategic partnership integrated the expertise and experience of DELTA MPD and McKimmon Marketing Services and Office of Professional Development to re-envision continuing education for the lifelong learner.
- Successfully assisted the McKimmon Center’s move toward a next-generation vision for what lifelong educational services can look like.
- Created immersive media for NC State’s Red and White Night to invite participants to actively interact with campus from their own homes.
DELTA Goal 4: Support the creation and delivery of programs and courses that meet strategic enrollment planning and workforce needs for North Carolina and beyond.
[Aligns with University Goals 1 and 5]
- Identified, developed, and implemented new marketing and student recruitment strategies, technologies and campaigns as a means to reach underserved target audiences that are interested in online programs to expand their employment, job and career opportunities.
- Executed a careers-focused marketing strategy and integrated technologies within the online.ncsu.edu website, including an innovative career section equipped with job market data/trends aligned to educational opportunities through the Burning Glass platform. This strategy also includes automated student recruitment campaigns and dynamic, customized pay-per-click (PPC) ads. These additions support the NC State Brand Promise to create economic, societal and intellectual prosperity by committing to implement strategic, cutting-edge digital customized marketing, student recruitment and communications.
- Conducted and implemented 160+ environmental scans and market research studies to gauge demand for new credit and non-credit online programs and identify target audiences. This included 150 Burning Glass research projects, four EAB research projects, six UPCEA Center for Research and Strategy research projects, and SWOT Analysis and PDMM research reports for McKimmon Center for non-credit online future program opportunities.
- Grew NC State Online’s total audience by 13% across Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram for a total of 7,425 followers. Wrote 51 articles about NC State Online and Distance Education programs, students, faculty, staff and alumni.
- Developed the new student recruitment strategy to support 10 Mini-Marketing RFP Projects including specific support from the DELTA Marketing and Communications team as well as social media, PPC digital ad campaigns, and student and alumni stories.
- Provided funding for the Graduate Certificate in Renewable Energy Assessment and Development.
- Supported the creation and delivery of the original Wicked Problems, Wolfpack Solutions course designed for incoming students for both fall 2020 and spring 2021 semesters. Worked with faculty to prepare a second iteration of this course focused on global change for incoming fall 2021 students which began June 28, 2021.
DELTA Goal 5: Promote collaboration, transparency and efficiency in DELTA operations, programs and services.
[Aligns with University Goal 4]
- Produced more than 140 articles, including 22 pandemic-related articles that were featured in our monthly DELTA Connections newsletter. These were sent to all teaching faculty, deans, communicators and self-subscribed individuals. Our DELTA Connections open rate averaged 56% for the year. In 18 “tip-focused” articles, we addressed collaboration, tools, online teaching resources, pandemic-specific barriers, and more. We wrote 17 online and distance education graduation stories and highlighted the commencement services DELTA helped to livestream.
- Created and updated online resources to support NC State faculty as we continued another year of remote emergency teaching.
- Maintained DELTA’s social media channels, which served as a source of community for faculty throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Between March 2020 and May 2021, we posted 720 tweets containing support resources, tips, DELTA Workshop reminders, and much more. Our Twitter account earned 463,400 impressions, 56,919 profile visits, 787 mentions, 1,882 link clicks, and over 100 new followers. In the same period, DELTA’s Facebook page earned 26 new likes, 51 followers, 3,965 impressions and 252 pageviews.
- Continued to implement Agile frameworks, including tools such as backlog planning and prioritization, Kanban, retrospectives, and iteration planning across multiple teams and projects to promote continuous flow, release, testing, and enhanced collaboration.
- Provided project management, change management support and coaching to our McKimmon colleagues for the last fiscal year, specifically in the areas of REPORTER onboarding, website development, and broad strategic prioritization and planning.
- Offered support and consultation services to peers across campus while leading the Project Management and Agile Community. This group has more than 120 members across all colleges and departments of the university, and monthly meetings involve 20 participants on average.
- Led the Women in Technology (WIT) interest group, a supportive community for women and allies in tech. The group has more than 130 members across the campus community, monthly meetings and presentations, and an active Twitter account.
- Continued our commitment to wellness programs as well as biweekly all-DELTA check-in meetings. Received gold status as a Well Wolfpack Certified Organization in April 2021.
- Fully integrated ServiceNow as a Help Desk tool across the organization in alignment with the university’s IT Strategic Plan.
- Prioritized the safety and wellbeing of our employees by expanding flexible work arrangements to allow people to work remotely and safely. Purchased and distributed personal protective equipment (PPE), signage, disinfectant and sanitizing supplies. These supplies and PPE were designated to units in compliance with our return-to-work plans. Purchased and implemented HotDesk+ hoteling software to ensure physical distancing standards while on site and a record of on-site employee activity.
- DELTA, NC State Libraries and the Office of Faculty Development [now the Office of Faculty Excellence] colleagues presented to the NC State Board of Trustees (The Great Online Pivot: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly) on Nov. 12, 2020 to highlight the collaborations across NC State’s campus that provided academic continuity during the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Created a new strategic plan aligned with the university’s strategic initiatives. This plan recognizes DELTA’s role in supporting digital transformation across all learning environments (F2F, hybrid, DE) at NC State.
- Planned for a July 1, 2021 name change from Distance Education and Learning Technology Applications to Digital Education and Learning Technology Applications to accurately reflect DELTA’s broad contributions to the NC State learning community.