Instructor: Frequently Asked Questions
Navigate the instructor FAQ by clicking the Table of Contents bar on the left.
1. “Will someone steal my ideas?”
Riipen is facilitating the development of Open Educational Resources (including templates for projects ) that reduce the barriers of creating applied projects (or work-integrated experiential learning projects) opportunities for students. We believe that collaboration fosters innovation.
It’s important to note that you do not need to share your entire syllabus on Riipen - only a description of the applied or experiential learning activity your students will be completing. The short project description is only an overview. It is publicly available to any user on the site, so that we can advertise and promote it to prospective off-campus partners. In addition, only the Riipen course page is public — any files, comments, deliverables, etc. associated with the course remain private. If privacy is still a concern, you can make your Riipen course private, so that only a smaller audience (those who have the direct link) will see it.
2. “What if another similar Riipen project is launched by another instructor at the same time as mine?”
In terms of competing with similar courses, we’ve found that where project examples and deliverables are similar, the best way to compete is with proactiveness and responsiveness. Educators who regularly request projects from the marketplace, and respond to prospective employer requests quickly, will have the edge. If an employer responds to multiple courses, they are most likely to match with the educator who best communicates with them.
3. “I don’t need Riipen, I already have my contacts.”
Riipen is a platform that saves instructors time by helping them to quickly scale work integrated learning in the classroom. With a suite of project management tools (employer application tracking and management, in-app chat, milestone tracking, skills validation, feedback, etc.), instructors can focus more on student success and less on the time consuming work of manually managing these experiences.
Instructors can also invite their own contacts (i.e., off-campus partners) to join Riipen for free (these contacts only have access to that school’s portal and student projects).
Notably, many very successful schools use a mix of both the Riipen marketplace and their own contacts to source projects for all of their students.
4. “We don’t want other instructors “stealing” our off-campus partners.”
Educators cannot view which off-campus partners have connected with an instructor’s course. This applies to other educators in your school’s portal, as well as educators outside of your institution.
5. “I don’t have the time to search for off-campus partners on top of my other duties.”
Your school has a dedicated customer support team at Riipen that actively monitors the marketplace and helps to connect instructors with employers looking for student talent. If there are no off-campus partners relevant to your course already on the Riipen platform, the Riipen sales team initiates a search to add more partners to the platform. You’re not alone — Riipen is here to support you every step of the way.
6. “What about IP? Who owns the students’ work? What if they create something that generates revenue for the industry partner?”
Our standard terms of service are as follows: while students own their work and intellectual property, by providing it to off-campus partners they are granting the partner unrestricted usage of that project deliverable.
We find that our standard terms are agreeable to users in most cases, as students are largely submitting insights, recommendations, and research or planning documents. There are a few cases, like graphic design (where students are submitting digital assets) where the instructor may want to introduce different terms. An instructor or institution can always make a new arrangement for intellectual property ownership with the industry partner, which would supersede Riipen's standard terms. We recommend this be done through a separate document (including these requirements in the commitments section of the assignment page is helpful, but not sufficient).
Off-campus partners can also introduce their own project terms and conditions when they create their projects on Riipen, and these would supersede Riipen's standard terms of service.
You can find the exact language around these types of customized agreements between companies/schools in our terms, under "Part II: Additional User-Specific Terms", and I've copied the relevant language below:
"Customer may agree to additional or different terms with a Student pursuant to a separate agreement with such Student (e.g. an NDA or engagement agreement) that will govern Customer’s relationship with the Student, provided that the applicable University to which such Student belongs first approves such additional or different terms in writing."
7. “I don’t have time to set up my Riipen course.”
Adding applied or work-integrated learning to your existing courses can feel overwhelming if you haven’t done it before. But Riipen is here to help. We can help with:
8. “I don’t want to publish a course because there are no potential partners on the Riipen platform.”
Riipen’s platform is largely driven by YOU!. Once your course is published, the instructor and Riipen can work together to source an appropriate off-campus partner. If there are no relevant partners currently on the platform, Riipen’s team develops an outreach strategy (including local employers, if you request that) to find new partners to match with your course.
9. “This is great, but I’m not teaching until next semester (i.e., now’s not the right time to think about it)”
Riipen recommends posting your Riipen course page 6-8 weeks prior to its start date. This provides a decent time interval to find off-campus partners to work with your students. However, instructors who provide even more time for matchmaking increase their chance of success. We have many instructors who post two to three semesters in advance of their courses starting.
10. “I’m a part-time prof, I don’t know if I will be assigned to teach this until a few months prior.”
Riipen encourages instructors to create a draft course that they can publish when their course is confirmed. If the course is published, a program coordinator can help manage the posting and until an instructor is assigned. If needed, we can deactivate the course on the platform.
11. “I want my students to find their own off-campus partners.”
Riipen can supplement current outreach to off-campus partners that you are already doing. For some students, such as international students, recent immigrants, or students from under-represented groups it can be difficult for them to know where to start.
The Riipen platform eliminates the barriers for these students. This enhances equity, diversity and inclusion for your students.
12. “I don’t want to have to check multiple platforms.”
Our most successful educators check Riipen 2-4 times per month when they are engaging off-campus for their course. This proactive engagement helps you obtain the best possible partners for your course. Riipen will always notify you by email of important activity that requires your action or response, to ensure you don’t have to be checking back daily.
13. “Do you integrate with our Learning Management System?”
Yes! Did you know we also integrate with four of the most common Learning Management Systems? If your school hasn’t integrated Riipen in the LMS yet, connect us to your IT department and we’ll show them how to get set up, to enable you to check Riipen within the system you are already using day to day.