(Originally posted in 2015, I thought this blog was relevant now at the beginning of the semester for all those teaching online this term.)
What you can expect from your Instructor:
- I’ll reply to your questions within 24-48 hours except during holidays or weekends.
- I’ll provide clear and concise instructions and exercises for you to follow.
- I’ll return graded assignments within two weeks from the due date.
- I’ll monitor discussions to clarify students’ postings, highlight good or interesting comments and ideas, and provide insight.
- I’ll provide the necessary components of successful interaction: explanation, demonstration, practice, feedback, and assessment.
- I’ll provide a range of practice opportunities–from self-corrected multiple choice items to free form expression on a concept.
- I’ll provide meta-cognitive, cognitive, and social strategies for instruction.
- I know the platform you’re using very thoroughly, so that I can anticipate and make good guesses about the origins of any problems you’re likely to have and some answers for them.
What I expect from my Students:
- You’ll learn what the minimum technical requirements of the course include. Take the student orientation tutorial for this learning management system before getting started. Read the information in the Help tab (online manual) to learn how to use a tool. Seek other training services for basic computer and word processing skills.
- Your discussion posts will be consequential and full of content! For example, simply responding “me too,” or “thanks,” doesn’t include content. Use good grammar and spelling when posting online. Use the spell check feature.
- You’ll follow the rules of Netiquette. For example, no bullying online.
- You’ll complete required tasks in a timely manner. Be proactive with a back-up plan in case you’re unable to access the Internet in your regular place of study.
- You’ll preplan for testing situations to ensure uninterrupted span of time. For example, you won’t be able to access the Internet in remote locations like on a cruise.
- You won’t plagiarize the work of others and claim it as your own. Cite your sources using the style guide required for your field of study (e.g., American Psychological Association’s manual for social science). Make sure you use the latest edition.
Protocol for Resolving Technical Issues:
- First, make sure it’s not a browser issue (e.g., Google Chrome), and try a different browser to see if this solves the problem. If so, then you either need to update your regular browser or clear its history, cookies, and cache.
- If after updating your browser, or other browsers don’t work, make sure it isn’t your computer. Try logging in from a different computer to see if you receive the same error message.
- Read log error messages and record problem specifics and forward this to tech support and your instructor. Take a screenshot, if possible, to illustrate the exact problem.
- Remember that your peers can help you, too!
- Last, after someone (or you) fixes the problem, make sure you refresh/reload the Web page, as the system will remember the exact same page you were looking at the last time you logged in.
Sandra Annette Rogers, PhD