Documentation:Distance Learning Support/Course Participation
In this section, you will find some useful information on how you can participate in your distance learning course.
How do I Contact my Instructor?
If you need to contact your instructor by phone, please follow these directions:
- If the call is local, just proceed as usual. If the call is long distance, you may call your instructor directly and ask her or him to return your call.
- If you are having difficulty reaching your instructor and don’t know why, please contact the Learner Support Advisors in Brock Hall for assistance.
Estimated Weekly Time Commitment of a Distance Course
To be successful in a distance learning course, it is estimated that readings, hands-on assignments, and online work will take an average of 10-12 hours per week to complete. Keep in mind this is just an estimate which can vary with each course.
If you are taking a distance learning course, you will likely be required to participate in online discussions. Distance learning courses often require much more student involvement than traditional lecture-driven courses where you might come to class, take notes, write a paper, and then take a test. Many online courses require interaction with faculty and peers on a weekly or even daily basis. Therefore, you will need to schedule time for working on required activities just as you would schedule time each week to attend classes. The major benefit to students in a distance learning course is the flexibility it affords you to participate in discussions and complete most learning activities around your own schedule.
Participation Requirements for a Distance Learning Course
The requirements for participation are outlined in the course objectives and can be accessed when you log into your course site. If you have any questions concerning the requirements, contact the instructor of the course for clarification.
How Long do I Have to Complete my Course?
It is your responsibility as a student to ensure you complete your course within the allotted time frame. You should note the end date for your course when you register. You can also check for the final month date on your course schedule. This is the month your course effectively ends.
Please note: distance learning courses should be completed within the time allowed as websites are closed after the course end date, in order to revise for subsequent offerings.
In some cases, acceleration through the course is possible. Check with the course instructor, before registering, to see if he or she can accommodate your wish to finish the course earlier than scheduled. If you have permission from the instructor to move ahead at a faster pace, you must apply to write your exam early.
See the Policies and Procedures section for more information about course accelerations and course extensions.
What Should I Expect from my Instructor?
Your instructor is your guide through the course content. He or she may contact you at the beginning of the course as an introduction.
At any point in the course, if you are struggling with the material or are concerned that you are not keeping up for whatever reason, it is important to contact your instructor. He or she may assist you in determining the best course of action. Sometimes your instructor will consult with Learner Support and/or Academic Advisors offering assistance to you in the distance education process.
You can contact your instructor by telephone, mail, and/or email. If your course is online, you will likely use email, however most instructors are available by telephone as well. Contact information for your instructor will be included in the course package or posted on the course website (if applicable). If you are having difficulties reaching your instructor and don’t know why, contact the Learner Support Advisors in Brock Hall.
How do I Submit Assignments?
Guidelines for assignment submission will be posted on your course website. If you are unclear about the requirements ask your instructor.