The biggest difference between online courses and classroom courses is that Internet study is student-centered rather than teacher centered. This means that you – the student – are responsible for your own learning and success. If you are highly motivated, log on and participate frequently, and produce high quality work – you will be successful. However, if you log on sporadically, participate minimally, or submit poor quality work – you will not. Online higher education is aimed at independent learners. If you require the structure of a classroom, then online courses will not suit you.
In this course, we read and discuss the entire text! If you do not read the text in advance of the discussions, your lack of knowledge will be obvious to me and to the other students. It is not uncommon in these courses for students to provide strong, public criticism of other students who “waste their time” with ill-informed posts.
I expect the successful student to spend an average of about 120-150 total hours on this course. Although that may seem like a lot – remember this: A traditional classroom-based course is designed to require 45 hours of “seat time” plus 2-3 hours outside of class for each hour in class. It adds up to around 150 total hours.
Do you have a plan if you have a technical problem? If your computer crashes, or if your Internet connection fails – these events do not excuse you from your course responsibilities.You can access this online course from any computer that has an Internet connection. I suggest that you make a plan now for events such as these. If you ever have a technical problem connecting to your course, submitting work to your course, or any other course-related issue, call the SLN Student Helpdesk at (800) 875-6269. If the problem is with the SLN system, you will be granted a time extension for submitting assignments affected by the problem. However, if you do not report the problem to SLN, no time extension will be granted.
Final note: You are responsible for keeping up with the requirements of this course. If you do not logon regularly, submit your assignments and discussion posts in a timely fashion, and follow the rules I have posted, it is very likely you will not succeed. However, I will not withdraw you from this course. If you decide not to finish for any reason, you must contact the Registrar’s Office and officially withdraw yourself. If you just stop participating, you will receive the final course grade of “F”.