Networked Learning Initiatives (NLI) began as Instructional Development Initiative during the summer of 1993 with the overall strategy to provide faculty with knowledge and resources to explore the potential of technology for improving teaching and learning at Virginia Tech. From a few workshops and basic access to technology, the Instructional Development Initiative grew into the Faculty Development Institute (FDI). As a nationally recognized program, FDI had a transformative impact on the university’s instructional program by ensuring that faculty and students have the most efficient and effective learning environments and instructional technologies. Through the Faculty Computer Refresh program, FDI partnered with colleges to provide new computers, every four years, to eligible full-time teaching faculty, in conjunction with the completion of required professional development. Faculty were not only able to learn about technology, but they could easily introduce what they learned in their classes with the increased access that a new computer provided.

From its inception in 1993, thousands of short courses and workshops have influenced the way faculty, staff, and students engage and learn in the 21st century. NLI emerged from FDI with a renewed focus of enhancing digital fluency for faculty, staff, and students. As we look to the future, NLI will foster the original mission of FDI, while leading the Virginia Tech community in technology-enhanced learning and digital fluency.


Our Mission

The mission of NLI is to provide faculty, staff, and students access to technology, knowledge, and resources for enhancing digital fluency and improving teaching and learning at Virginia Tech. As a unit of Technology-enhanced Learning and Online Strategies, NLI facilitates and leverages campus-wide partnerships to offer programming and training opportunities designed to foster technology integration and increase digital fluency for faculty, staff, and students at Virginia Tech.



In order to offer a broad range of curricular offerings, NLI partners with other units across campus to offer a comprehensive list of professional development opportunities for faculty, staff and graduate students at Virginia Tech. Each session in the NLI curriculum is led by experts from their respective field. NLI’s curriculum is designed to provide participants tools and strategies to enhance digital fluency in the core areas of:

If your organization is interested in delivering a session or event through NLI, please contact us for more information.