Online Classroom FAQs
Below are some answers to commonly asked questions. You should also consider joining the Online Classroom Support Group by clicking HERE – you can search through the questions asked by other students, and ask your own questions too!
How to sign up for a class
- Use the COURSES OFFERED link to check out what's available
- Pick a course and sign up! It's that easy.
- Once you've signed up, use the email address and password sent to you to access your content.
- If you paid for access to a discussion forum with your content, you'll have to be patient, this step can take 24-36 hours as your instructor will add you manually. If you've waited longer than this and don't see the discussion forum listed under MY DISCUSSION FORUMS or you get an access denied error when trying to access through a link on the MY CONTENT page, simply email your instructor and they'll be sure to set you up.
Once you've registered for a class, all of your content can be found at the MY CONTENT link at the top of each page. Watch any videos, read any documents or tutorials, and then submit your assignment for review in the discussion forum for your class, if you're a participant. Spectators can view the assignments and feedback of others in those discussion forums as well.
New 7/11/2013! We're switching to a new discussion forum format for the next session of classes. Familiarize yourself now with how it will look:
Once a class is over, your topic will be deleted so the next class can move in. However, you can use these instructions to save the information to your computer!
Does the classroom meet at specific times?
The Online Classroom is an example of ‘asynchronous learning’. That means that you can log in any time you like, and view information any time you like. Typically, a working student gets an assignment, goes out and completes the assignment, and then uploads or links their assignment in the classroom. Then, the instructor responds the next time she sees the response. If you’re a dedicated student, you could be getting feedback as frequently as every day. If it takes you several days to produce a response to an assignment, then the instructor’s feedback will of course be less frequent and correspond to your own response time. Auditors can of course look at everybody’s assignment responses, and the instructor feedback on those responses, at any time of the night or day. Self-guided, or ‘independent learners', will not get access to discussion forums, although they'll get access to the same great training materials, and will be able to view feedback from previous classes. And, the material in the classroom will always be available for a short time after the end of the class, so that you can do as much catching up as you need to do to get the information you need, although the instructors will at that point close all forum topics and will no longer be responding to any new posts.
Is Online Learning for Me?
There are a lot of options out there today for online classes and content. While this really can open up your options with respect to your dog training and handling, let's face it, ONLINE LEARNING IS NOT FOR EVERYBODY, and it may not be for YOU! I'm not trying to discourage you from taking classes here at the Online Classroom – on the contrary, I hope you'll join us! However, there CAN be a learning curve with the idea of an online dog training class. If you're not comfortable with computers, or get frustrated easily when faced with a computer-related issue, or have a slow internet connection, then your learning experience is quite likely going to be diminished. On the other hand, if you are not comfortable with computers, and you can recognize that your FIRST class online is going to include a lot of learning about not only the content presented, but HOW TO TAKE an online course, you're likely to be well on your way to becoming a savvy long-distance learner! Remember:
- Be patient, and recognize that your issues and difficulties are almost ALWAYS solveable
- Recognize that the first few times there may be lumps and bumps along the way
- The person you're sending an email to for help is a PERSON, who will try to help you as best they can (it's usually little old me!), and may be helping several other people at once, in addition to providing feedback, doing their own dog training, etc. 🙂
Tips for getting the most out of an online class
Take Notes: Keep a document file on your computer where you can copy and paste information you’d like to keep for yourself. This might include information that you’ve received specifically as a response to an assignment, or maybe comments I or another student have made on somebody else’s assignment response. Highlight your notes, and always look over the required textbook or material throughout the week. Not the day before, not just one day.
Everyday, little by little, become familiar with the content.
You’re teaching yourself, so make sure you’re focused, rested, and ready to learn.
Devote your online class as if you’re going to class. A typical class that meets once a week is roughly 1-1.5 hours long, give or take. Learn to use that time in your home or wherever you’re doing the assignments, and break it up evenly so you aren’t stuffing yourself with too much information.
Ask questions. I am here for a reason, and you’ve paid me for this service. There is no reason why you should not be able to contact me for any advice, tips or questions. Use the messaging feature of the classroom. Let me know you’re interested in the course and that you’re a hard-worker. Give me feedback on how I can better help you.
Use a planner, post-its, journal, anything where you can schedule your week in advance to really put in front of you what must be completed. I will add assignments as you go along, maybe follow-up questions for you to answer, so make sure you keep up-to-date with your work.
Log in everyday. Even if it’s for a few minutes, make sure you log in to see what’s going on.
If you’re a registered student in a class, and you need to know how to submit videos for a class, here’s how.
You can post a URL of a video you’ve uploaded to any of the following sites, in a comment or forum post, and it will automatically show your video:
- Youtube (preferred)
However, Yoube is preferred, mostly because that’s what I use, and I’ll be able to give you some level of support with it, AND, you can upload your videos to Youtube as “unlisted”. This means that they are publicly available only to those people who have the direct link, or URL, to your video.
What this means is that you can upload a video to your Youtube account, and if it is set to unlisted, you’ll still be able to post the URL in to a comment or forum post, but it won’t be searchable by the world. You’re of course welcome to make your video public if you like, but my own videos will remain unlisted as they are solely for use by paying students in the Online Classroom.
EDITING YOUR VIDEOS:
It is strongly recommended that you edit out all the pieces of your video not relevant to the exercises or sequences being focused on.
You are much more likely to get detailed and relevant feedback from myself and the rest of your classmates if we can get right to the “meat” of your video without having to wade through irrelevant footage.
You can edit your video with a free program like iMovie or Windows Movie Maker; both do an excellent job of snipping out footage, adding titles, etc., and have a fairly low learning curve.
Also, if you’re comfortable adding text or titles to your video, please do so. Text can help myself and your classmates see what the problem you’re having is (i.e. if you’ve got a question about why something happened at a particular time in the video, put your question AT that particular time in the video!). It can also help serve as a reference as to when the video was taken, and can help you (and the rest of the class) take note of your progress.
EMBEDDING YOUR VIDEOS IN A POST OR ASSIGNMENT RESPONSE
All you need to do to embed a video in a post or assignment response is to put the URL (either the full URL or the shortened URL that may be provided), and the Online Classroom will automatically display the video.
If your video isn’t displaying properly, one of the following is likely to blame:
- Your video is set to PRIVATE
- Your video’s URL is not correct
- You posted some HTML code in with your video’s URL instead of just the plain old URL. You can edit your post to check and see if this is the case.
Do NOT upload your video to the site! Just post the URL
ALSO – Check out the THIS PDF FILE for some tips on how to get great video feedback!
The following topics are available for you to check out: