eLearning Information Brochure

 

As a student enrolled in an online, web course with eTech, we welcome you to a unique and diverse educational opportunity. If you are a new student, this brochure is designed to help you get started with your course. If you have had web courses at Tech in the past, this will be a good review for you and introduce you to some of the new elements we are continually adding to the online learning areas at Tech.

eTECH's mission is to provide a single focal point for any online training/degree programs and online resources made available at Arkansas Tech University. The Center will provide information, training and assistance to students and faculty in choosing, creating and using online course systems and resources.eTECH is the accumulation of what the VLC/CCC was with the addition of the Blackboard Course Management System, Distance Learning Facilities at TECH and the TECH Computer Based Training (CBT Videos). All web courses are done via the the online course management system, Blackboard http://blackboard.atu.eduwith access information and course details being provided at the main eTECH site www.atu.edu/etch.  Email (via OneTECH) https://onetech.atu.edu is the primary method of communication between students and instructors; therefore, check your email, on a regular basis, to keep informed of class activities.eTECH is designed to allow students to participate in higher education at times and places conducive to their work and personal schedules. Courses are delivered in various forms. In addition to the worldwide web, The Center uses compressed interactive video, traditional video, and Computer Based Training (CBT) http://cbt.atu.edu self study units to help students brush up on additional programs or learn some new skills while taking classes.

The Center's eLearning Page http://eLearn.atu.edu is your gateway for site status and information on web courses. We will use this page to notify you of any planned server outages, major changes in The Center's operation or the rare occurrence of school closing due to weather. Please check The Center's Home Page frequently for information on CBT and other eTECH events.

Topics Covered

 

 

MINIMUM EQUIPMENT REQUIREMENTS (PC or MAC)
PC-Type Computer:
  • IBM PC Compatible PIV
  • 256MB RAM (1gig RAM recommended)
  • Windows 98, 98SE, ME, 2000 , XP or Vista
  • Cable Modem, DSL, or on-campus computers (Do not use browsers supplied by your ISP.)
Software:
  • Netscape 6+ or Internet Explorer 6.0+ Browser
  • E-Mail client such asMicrosoft Outlook or TECH's Mail web site <https://onetech.atu.edu>
  • Microsoft Word 97, 98, 2000, or 2003, 2007 (Microsoft WORKS is NOT compatible)
  • RealPlayer 9+ audio/video player
  • Windows Media Player 10+
Macintosh-Type Computer:
  • Macintosh iMac/G3/G4/G5
  • 256MB RAM (1gig RAM recommended)
  • OSX10 Jaguar >
  • Cable Modem, DSL, or on-campus computers (Do not use browsers supplied by your ISP.)
Software:
  • Netscape Navigator 6+ with Netscape Mail or Internet Explorer 6.0+ Browser
  • E-Mail client such asMicrosoft Outlook or TECH's Mail web site <https://onetech.atu.edu>
  • Microsoft Word 2004 or greater)
  • RealPlayer 9+ audio/video player

Linux is also supported. Basically any good system with a good connection to the internet and a word processing system compatible with MS Word 2007.

GETTING STARTED

Please check The Center's home page for late-breaking information concerning this site and all of it's various functions and capabilities. On the help desk area, pay particular attention to the "Students" and "Email" sections as there are a lot of FAQ that may save you and your instructor valuable time.

TECH-ASSIGNED eID

Students must use their TECH-assigned eID e-mail account for all communication with Arkansas Tech University. Due to the number of problems with students forwarding their eID to another, off-campus accounts (such as Hotmail, Yahoo and many others), mail forwarding is strictly prohibited. Mail delivered to forwarded accounts is lost when the account cannot be accessed by the TECH mail server. TECH will not be responsible for mail delivered to a non-TECH account. You must use your TECH-assigned eID to RESPOND to class discussion lists, your instructor, the Center and TECH. All other accounts will be blocked and refused access to the Center.

Through Blackboard you will be joined to your class by your instructor, and within the class, an email, and discussion forum will provide you with the ability to communicate with your instructor and classmates. Regular attendance (online check-in) is required.

COURSE MANAGEMENT SYSTEM (BLACKBOARD)

All online classes use the Course Management System (Blackboard) for class. This system requires the use of your Tech eID and password. Blackboard access permission is entered by your instructor. This may not happen immediately. Make sure you e-mail your instructor to let him or her know you are in the class. Don't forget your student I.D. number (T#), eID and your TECH e-mail address.Students may access course materials through the Course Management system at http://blackboard.atu.edu. Login using your eID and password. You should have a link to your courses at the right under My Courses. If not, you may need to self-enroll. To familiarize yourself with Blackboard, be sure to check out the Introduction to Blackboard Students course.

A new feature used by some instructors in conjunction with Blackboard is Tegrity. Tegrity Lecture Capture System is used to record both online and face to face instructor lead courses to video. This allows students whether at a distance or on campus to view lectures at their convenience and multiple times, providing a more comprehensive review of the course. You will find more information about Tegrity in your Introduction to Blackboard course.

FAQ on the Course Management System can be found here.

Please contact the Course Management System Administrator for additional information or assistance bbsystem@atu.edu or (479)-968-0646.

SYLLABUS/LESSON PLANS

This information is provided within the course section of Blackboard. The Center operates in conjunction with the published university calendar and you will have to complete your course by the end of the current term. Your instructor may have strict guidelines on assignment completion. Do not try to do all of the course work at one sitting.

COMMUNICATING VIA E-MAIL

In Blackboard, click the "Communications" button, then "Email", to communicate with fellow students and your instructor.Please do NOT use any enhancements to your messages; use plain text only. Some students' email programs may not be as sophisticated as yours and will display only garbage when they open your email. This includes background colors and "styled" text.

VIRUS WARNING

Always be aware of any attachments you receive via email from any source, even those from family. If you are not expecting an attachment, contact the sender before opening it. This is especially true if the attachment has the letters "vbs". This is the best clue to the possibility of a virus program. However, this is not the only way a virus can be transmitted. The University blocks many attachments such as .zip, .com, .exe, .vbs, .scr and a number of others.

The Center strongly suggests you purchase the Symantec Norton Anti-Virus (NAV) software. This is currently the only software containing a "Live Update" feature. Make sure the Live Update is set to operate when you would normally have the computer online. This allows the program to be updated frequently and automatically for the latest virus definitions. NAV is available at leading computer stores as well as a multitude of online sources.Should you receive a virus, contact your instructor and the Campus Support Center at tech.support@atu.edu or bbsystem@atu.edu or (479) 968-0646 for additional instructions. This way, we will be aware of the virus and take steps necessary to insure the Center does not pass it on to others in your class. Most of all, do not cause a scare by sending virus alerts to your class lists. Check with reliable virus centers such as Symantec Most major virus alerts are first heard on CNN or the morning television news programs as their overseas news bureaus learn of the attacksfirst.

TECHNOLOGY POLICIES

There are a number of policies governing access and computer usage at TECH. Use of the online or campus systems indicates you have read and will comply with these policies. Please review these at http://cservices.atu.edu/.

CONTACT/HELP INFORMATION

The Campus Support Center is located within the Technology Center within the Ross Pendergraft Library and Technology Center at 305 West Q Street, Russellville, AR 72801.

If you have questions or are having problems, please review the eTECH/eLearning help area and the Blackboard FAQ page before contacting the on-campus Help Desk by phone or e-mail. Some common problems and frequently asked questions are included on those pages.

bbsystem@atu.edu (479) 968-0646(Toll Free: 1-866-400-8022