This section of the COPLACDigital Handbook covers the roles and responsibilities of each party involved in course creation and support.

Grant Staff


Bill Spellman (Director), Claire Bailey (Program Associate), and Emma Anderson (Communication Coordinator)

  • Serve as fiscal agents for the grant. They handle all requests for expenditures and reimbursements.
  • Help to promote the grant and recruit faculty from member institutions.
  • Support the co-principal investigators and co-teaching teams in the recruitment of students for each course.
  • Assist the co-principal investigators and co-teaching teams with assessment of the courses and the results of the project.

Co-Principal Investigators

Ellen Holmes Pearson, Professor of History, UNC Asheville, Asheville, NC

Jeff McClurken, Professor of History & American Studies and Special Assistant to the Provost for Teaching, Technology, & Innovation, University of Mary Washington, Fredericksburg, VA

  • Plan and lead the June 2016 convening, in order to introduce participating faculty, instructional technologists, and archivists to the innovative pedagogy and technology required for team-teaching the digital liberal arts seminars at a distance.
  • Facilitate the pairing of faculty members into two-person teams at the June 2016 convening, and guide these faculty teams as they choose topics for their courses.
  • Lead technical and pedagogical training workshops for the two-person instructional teams in Fall 2016, Spring 2017, and Summer 2017.
  • Remain in close contact with instructional teams throughout the duration of the grant, particularly leading up to and during the semester when instructors are leading their multi-campus seminars.
  • Assist the instructional teams in marketing their courses and recruiting students from all COPLAC member campuses.
  • Work with the external assessment coordinator to develop quantitative and qualitative assessment instruments that will measure the courses’ success at meeting learning outcomes.
  • Assist the instructional teams and students in seeking presentation opportunities in an effort to share work in progress and assessment results more widely across the academy.

COPLACDigital Administrative Support

Leah Tams, COPLACDigital Program Associate, University of Mary Washington

  • Provide administrative support to the Mellon Grant Principal Investigators.
  • Assist in the planning, outreach, and execution of the 2016 COPLACDigital June Convening.
  • Coordinate the planning, outreach, and execution of three workshops at the University of Mary Washington for COPLACDigital faculty pairs.
  • Develop and maintain
  • Create subdomains and subdirectories for each COPLACDigital course and its associated students and projects prior to each semester.
    • Install WordPress in each of these subdomains/subdirectories prior to the semester.
  • Serve as a technical support contact for COPLACDigital faculty and technologists.

COPLACDigital Technical Support

Greg Dillingham, Manager, Distance Learning Services, UNC Asheville

  • Provide interactive teleconference services for the COPLACDigital courses.
  • Assist with/advise on course scheduling and the technical aspects of connecting students and faculty during the class sessions.
  • Act as liaison between the MCNC teleconference facility and co-teachers/students for each COPLACDigital course.

Gene Hyde, Head of Special Collections and University Archivist, UNC Asheville

  • Lead efforts to develop best practices and standards for archivists to support research in COPLACDigital liberal arts projects, and facilitate ongoing communication and collaboration among the archivists on the participating COPLACDigital campuses.
  • Lead efforts to inventory primary collections in campus libraries and in local and regional archives that are relevant to the course topics, and to plan and develop ways to share primary resources among the participating COPLACDigital institutions.
Archivists & Librarians