A typical timeline for our Course Development process:   

Steps of Course Development

Hiring (2-6 weeks)

  • Course development begins with initial consultations between the Instructional Designer (ID) and Academic Director / Program Coordinator
  • After the interview panel is selected and candidates and shortlisted to develop the course, the committee interviews and appoint Subject Matter Experts (SMEs), and the ID creates the contracts.

Planning (1-2 months)

  • The course development team, including the course developer (writer), consultant (reviewer), and instructional designer, plan the course scope and sequence to achieve educational objectives.
  • They develop the blueprint, a planning document which includes learning outcomes, topics, assessments, activities, resources, and media needs.
  • If there are textbooks or other resources needed, the ID orders through our curriculum team.
  • If you need a TRU library account, the ID will coordinate with Brenda Smith.  Brenda is also a great resource for searching for articles, videos, books, and more (email her at brsmith@tru.ca)

Course Development (4 – 6 months)

Course Writing:

  • Once the blueprint is approved, the developer begins to write the units and assessments.
  • Typically after each unit is written, they get feedback from the ID and consultant.
  • There are often several drafts of units and assessments as the ID and consultant review the course materials and evaluate quality.


  • The ID coordinates with the Intellectual Property department to ensure all copyright needs are met.
  • Course writers are asked to include all important information in the course modules/units (e.g. author, date, website, etc.)


  • Includes graphics, simulations, multimedia, audio, and video recordings

Editing (1-3 months)

  • The ID sends all files to our editing team.
  • Once the files are returned, the ID revises files as needed.

Production (2 months)

  • Our Production team uploads the course content to Learning Management System (Blackboard Learn or Moodle)
  • The ID conducts the final revision and signs off the course

Delivery (1-2 months)

  • The Open Learning Faculty Member assigned to teach the course review the course materials
  • Students are enrolled in the course

Course Review (ongoing)

  • Course reviews are typically conducted by the Open Learning Faculty Members. Some programs have curriculum committees that may have a more formal review process.



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