A kickoff meeting with various stakeholders who are invested in the design and development of a course is a several-hour-long meeting used to gather input, brainstorm ideas, align course elements, and officially begin the course design and development process.
For a course with a standard syllabus with course-level learning outcomes, the kickoff meeting may focus entirely on the Course Planning Document and on creating module-level outcomes and aligning these with ideas for assessments, activities, learning resources, and course technologies. For a new course, a kickoff meeting may begin with a brainstorming session with sticky notes that everyone writes ideas and topics on and organizes into groups with other ideas and topics before moving on to the Course Planning Document and development of course-level outcomes.
A faculty member (sometimes referred to in course design as a subject matter expert, or SME) who is developing a course will want to come to a kickoff meeting with several items prepared:
Ideas about course-level outcomes or any needed changes to course-level outcomes
Ideas about assessments that would adequately measure student achievement in the course
Ideas about individual and group activities
Ideas about topics that might be covered in the course
Ideas about learning resources such as seminal readings, highly regarded textbooks, or skills practice videos
Important feedback from student evaluations of past sections of the course, if available (both positive and critical feedback)
Important data from student completion of a prior course, such as how students fared with graded assignments
For these first five bullets, "ideas" is important here, as a kickoff meeting is a rather fluid meeting in which discussion of these items and discoveries about what aligns with outcomes and what doesn't will impact what ends up 'sticking.'
At the end of a kickoff meeting, the faculty member and an assigned instructional designer will take what's been accomplished and develop it into a full-fledged course.
Readying for Course Development
Depending on your needs as a faculty member, readying for course development may include some additional steps, such as:
It suffices to say that you've totally got this! Here's to designing and developing a great course!