Online Classes: Instructions for Students

What is “Remote Instruction”?

This means that in place of the usual classroom time, your professor will be delivering an equivalent to the classroom experience through digital technology, managed through the Sakai learning management system that you already know. While some courses may vary, that means that you should plan for the following:

–Each of your courses will use one of two video-audio instruction tools: Big Blue Button or Zoom. Your professors will provide information on these tools and how to access them for your course.

–You will log onto Sakai and participate in video classes at their normally scheduled times for the two weeks of temporary remote instruction. Please note: you should not schedule other activities or obligations during scheduled class times. This is not a vacation in which your time is your own to use for employment or other activities during class time. Obviously, we are always prepared to allow you absences for legitimate reasons, but in all but a few classes, the expectation will be that you log on simultaneously to participate in real time.

–The rest of your syllabus will not change significantly. Due dates for some assignments will be adjusted, and research expectations will be adjusted to what you can access digitally through the library. Otherwise, we will use our digital resources to compensate for our not being together in the same room until we are able to gather on campus again.

So here’s what is important for you to do to prepare:

–Make sure you have adequate technology to access your courses: a desktop or laptop computer (with earbuds or earphones, if possible), a tablet or a smartphone. Note that our platforms will allow toll-free audio-only access through any telephone (smartphone, dumb phone, landline).

–Get familiar with the platforms as soon as they are made available to you. In particular, learn how to start your video and toggle your microphone off and on (students will have mics off except when they are speaking to ask a question or make a comment or presentation).

–In most cases, faculty will record these virtual-classroom experiences for later access. Don’t rely on that: show up on time and be ready to participate. But be assured that if something goes wrong, you’ll not miss out entirely.

–Above all, be patient, and nurture your curiosity to stay engaged. This is a challenge, but lesser mortals have done more with less.