The University of Iowa

Instructor Directions for Indicating “COVID-19 virtual ready” 

In order to ensure that all courses are ready for virtual delivery to University of Iowa students, the University of Iowa has re-implemented the “COVID-19 virtual-ready” indicator button on the ICON Dashboard.  This indicator is controlled by the instructors of each course in ICON. When the instructor believes that they have completed the necessary steps for virtual delivery, they will “turn on” the “COVID-19 virtual-ready” indicator.

Where is the “COVID-19 virtual-ready” button? 

The button is available to Instructors on the ICON Dashboard. It is found to the right of the course link, in the area with the Grade Change Digest and other Tools for Instructors.

Note: The COVID-19 button only appears for a course that is published (i.e. available to students). 

Instructor view of COVID-19 virtual instruction not prepared course link

What does the “COVID-19 virtual-ready” button in ICON mean? 

Clicking this button signals to your students and to the university that you are prepared to teach your course in a virtual format. The University of Iowa coronavirus website has more details about this change.

Instructors now see a button next to their course list on for their published courses, by default the button is turned off: 

Instructor view - COVID-19 button off


When clicked, the button turns green and a globe icon appears next to the course title for instructors:

COVID-19 button turned on


Once instructors click the COVID-19 virtual-ready button, students will see a globe next to their course title:

Student view of COVID-19 virtual instruction prepared course link with Globe icon

Why should I click it?

This indicator is controlled by the instructors of each course in ICON and will serve several purposes:

  1. Immediate ability to track and report how many courses campus-wide are ready (or not) for virtual delivery
  2. Provide colleges a way to connect with faculty who may be struggling to complete their virtual delivery efforts
  3. Offer a visual signal to students that their courses have been adapted and are ready for virtual delivery

When should I click it?

When you determine that your course is sufficiently prepared for virtual delivery, click the “COVID-19 virtual-ready” button.

If you have any questions about what makes your course ready to be taught online, please contact your department executive office or your associate dean.  

For any assistance in transforming your course, please contact the ITS Help Desk to be connected to the Office of Teaching, Learning & Technology, Distance and Online Education, and other resources or review materials available at

What if I want to change something in my course after clicking the button?

The button in the dashboard does not affect nor is affected by the content in your course site. Instructors can click the button again to set the course back to a “COVID-19 not virtual-ready” if there are changes you want to make. Note that if your course is published, your students can still access the course, even if this button is off.

Will this button change how students access my course?

No, this button will not change how students access your course. Instructors will continue to make their course available to students by publishing the course.

I’ve never used ICON before for my course, how do I get started?

Visit for several resources on how to get started teaching your course virtually. Staff from across the university are available to help you get your course moved into a more virtual-ready format.  

Once your course is set up, you’ll need to publish the course (if you have not already done so) so that your students can access it. Then click the “COVID-19 virtual-ready” button to signal to your students and to the university that your course is ready to be taught in a virtual format.