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Online Observation Guidelines

The policies and procedures for observing ELI online classes are similar to those for observing our regular, “on-campus” classes.

Is it for an SLS course assignment, or is it a short-term observation?

Before approaching an ELI online teacher to ask about observing ELI online classes, it’s important to determine the purpose of your observation. Is it for an SLS course assignment, or is it truly just an observation? If it is for an SLS course assignment, or if you wish to observe for an extended period, you will need to contact the ELI Director, Priscilla Faucette ( to get permission. If it is for research purposes, you will also need to submit a proposal to the ELI Director and follow the policies and procedures for conducting research in the ELI. In that case, please see the ELI research guidelines.

Guidelines for observing ELI online classes

If your observation is not for research purposes, follow these steps:

  1. Read the Guidelines and Etiquette for Observers of ELI Classes. Please note that a few of the points described in these guidelines do not apply to online classes (e.g., where to sit in the classroom). However, many also apply to the online context.
  2. Request permission from the ELI Director to observe ELI Classes. If the ELI Director approves, you can request permission directly from the ELI teacher you’d like to observe.
  3. If the teacher agrees to let you observe the class, make an appointment to meet with them prior to the observation.
    1. During this meeting, the teacher will show a few things about Laulima, the course website, and how to log on.
    2. The instructor will assign a “guest account” that allows you to log in and browse around the course site.
    3. Together, you should also decide on a set time period during which you will have access to the course website (usually one week). After that, your access to the website will be removed.
  4. Meet the teacher after the observation for a debriefing.

A Few Points:

If you’d like to observe the course for more than one time period (e.g., once during Week 6 and once during Week 12 of the semester), you’ll need to sign up and go through the process again.

IMPORTANT: Any materials, lesson plans, assignments, etc. found on the course website are the property of the ELI. Therefore, they are not to be altered or distributed or used for purposes other than those of the ELI course.

If you have any questions about any of these policies, please contact the ELI Director, Priscilla Faucette (