What's in Your Course?

Too much?

Too little?



What is INTERACT123?

  • Cloud-based application

  • Learning science based

  • Supports innovative course design/redesign and instruction

  • Used for onsite (face-to-face), blended, online course formats

  • Aligns with higher education and K-12 education

  • Supports CLEAR Course DesignTM with five pillars: Credit Hour, Licensure, Engagement, Accreditation, and Regular & Substantive Interaction

  • Provides dynamic dashboards to showcase engagement, workload, assessment, credit hour, and more​

mobile phone, computer, tablet

How does the INTERACT123 application work?

In three steps, faculty, instructional designers, and teachers enter instructor-student, student-content, and student-student interaction using drop down options that support student engagement through instruction, active learning, assessments, reading, writing, and feedback. A dynamic dashboard system provides interactive graphics showcasing a breakdown of types of interaction in alignment with assigned credit hours. The dashboard enables users to identify when there is too much or too little content that may affect student engagement, academic performance, and retention. The data visualization tools provide users the ability to review courses to identify potential risk of stop-out or attrition as well as share best practices for active learning, assessment, and engagement.


Why is INTERACT123 important for higher education and K-12 education?

INTERACT123 assists faculty, teachers, and instructional designers to:


  • Calculate, manage, and monitor student workload with assigned credit hours to support program learning outcomes and student success.


  • Pivot teaching, learning, assessment, and feedback  seamlessly from an onsite/classroom format to online or blended formats in alignment with assigned credit hours, online regulations, and Title IV compliance.


  • Map courses in alignment with assigned credit hours using tailored drop down activities to showcase instructor-student, student-content, and student-student interaction that support multiple means of representation, engagement, and action and expression.

  • Create alternative equivalencies for instruction and activities that reflect substantive and regular interaction to support student engagement and transfer of learning.

  • Utilize real-time data and graphics through an interactive dashboard and reading estimator to support student interaction and balance workload with instruction, active learning, assessment, and feedback.

  • Use the auto-generated course conspectus for lesson planning, new course development, course review, preparation for accreditation or licensure, and to support student engagement, retention, and completion.

  • Migrate easily from one institutional system to another (e.g., quarter system to semester system or semester to trimester system) while staying aligned with assigned credit hours and student learning outcomes.

What are the key features of the INTERACT123 application?

There are many key features that can assist faculty, teachers, and instructional designers to support quality and innovation with course design and instruction.


  • Drop downs: provide extensive active learning options that can be customized to support

    • instructor-student, student-content, and student-student interaction that align with Universal Design for Learning (multiple means of engagement, representation, and action and expression)

    • formative, interim, and summative assessments that align with course objectives and program learning outcomes

    • alternative equivalencies for instruction or activities to pivot from in-class/onsite, blended, online, or remote learning formats


  • Course dashboard system: provides interactive graphics that let you know how much time students are engaged in instructor-student, student-content, and student-student interaction in alignment with assigned credit hours. The dashboard includes a sequencing option to create weekly lesson plans and a category option to highlight student interaction.


  • Reading estimator: provides the ability to approximate how much time assigned reading may take based on level of difficulty and type of reading.


  • Import feature: provides the ability to copy/import selective or all interactions within a course or from other courses to use as you design or modify a course.  


  • Collaboration feature: enables faculty and teachers to collaborate with peers, instructional designers, and subject matter experts to design, modify, or enhance courses.


  • Send: enables you to share a copy of a course you have in INTERACT123. For courses that may have multiple sections, this option can help new faculty, teachers, or adjunct instructors understand the course breakdown of interaction in alignment with assigned credit hours and the weekly lesson planning feature.


  • Course conspectus: is a detailed summary and report generated for each course with graphics that includes learning format, course type, assigned credit hours, interaction (instructor-student, student-content, student-student), created alternative equivalencies, and alignment of assessments with course objectives and program learning outcomes. The course conspectus supports course/program review, preparation for accreditation (e.g., new program review, substantive change), and licensure by demonstrating how policies and procedures are consistently applied across all learning formats.


What is the Carnegie Unit?

The Carnegie Unit is a common time-based metric to measure student progress used within higher education and K-12 education.


According to The Carnegie Unit publication by Silva, White, and Toch (2015):


"The standard Carnegie Unit is defined as 120 hours of contact time with an instructor, which translates into one hour of instruction on a particular subject per day, five days a week, for twenty-four weeks annually. Most public high schools award credit based on this 120-hour standard (one credit for a course that lasts all year; or half a credit for a semester course). And, while state and district coursework requirements for graduation vary, most states require a minimum number of units, typically expressed as “Carnegie Units.” A typical high school student earns six to seven credits per year over a four-year program of high school. In higher education, students receive “credit hours,” a metric derived from the Carnegie Unit and based on the number of “contact hours” students spend in class per week in a given semester. A typical three-credit course, for example, meets for three hours per week over a fifteen-week semester. A student, then, might earn fifteen credit hours per semester (fifteen is standard full-time registration for a semester, thirty for an academic year) en route to a four-year bachelor’s degree requiring a total of 120 credit" (p. 8).


With continued growth in online learning and other modalities, the US Department of Education program addressed the concept “seat-time” in 2011 for asynchronous courses in regard to the credit hour.


There is no "seat time" requirement implicit in the definition of a credit hour. An institution that is offering asynchronous online courses would need to determine the amount of student work expected in each online course in order to achieve the course objectives, and to assign a credit hour based on at least an equivalent amount of work as represented in the definition of credit hour. (Program Integrity Questions and Answers – Credit Hours)


How does INTERACT123 work with a Learning Management System (LMS)?

INTERACT123 is a cloud-based application that can be used to complement to a LMS to support student engagement and retention. The INTERACT123 application uses a built in Course Interaction & Workload Calculator to generate a detailed conspectus for each course, which provides a weekly summary and lesson plan for educators with time estimates for instruction, assigned classwork, assessments, activities, and homework in alignment with assigned credit hours. The course conspectus can be used in preparation for course development, program reviews, accreditation, and/or licensure.


How can INTERACT123 assist educators and students with online and blended learning?

The INTERACT123 application is designed to work across all learning formats including classroom, hybrid, and online. The INTERACT123 course conspectus provides teachers with a detailed weekly or daily overview of assigned activities broken down by instructor-student, student-content, and student-student interaction to assist K-12 students and parents with time management, navigating coursework, and engaging in assigned activities within a classroom or an LMS. The course conspectus enables teachers to showcase innovative practices that support pivotal pedagogy and alternative equivalencies in alignment with course objectives and program learning outcomes.


What is the Notional Hour?

Notional learning hours are similar to the credit hour which is based on the Carnegie Unit. "Notional learning hours are the estimated learning time taken by the 'average' student to achieve the specified learning outcomes of the course-unit or programme. They are therefore not a precise measure but provide students with an indication of the amount of study and degree of commitment expected" (Stellenbosch University, 2019). The notional hour is used within educational systems in Europe, South Africa, Hong Kong, and many other countries around the world.