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Welcome to the new semester! Whether you are a traditional-lecture class student or a distance learning student, you will find useful information here other than just your course materials. You might also find some useful information in my tech blog. Click everything and browse around to see what comes up.

Distance Learning

Students in these classes are in charge of their learning in a way that is different from a traditional lecture class. You will have some freedom to set the speed at which you work through the material in the sense that you may spend less time on topics with which you are already familiar and more time on topics that are troublesome for you. This means that you may actually be able to complete the course before the end of the semester! In a distance learning math course, you will be provided with a weekly schedule of topics to be covered and a schedule of exams. In order to complete the course on time, you must keep up with the weekly schedule and test schedule. In order to succeed in this class, you should plan to spend about 9 to 12 hours each week working on the material, depending on how much of the material is already a review for you.

Are you able to . . .

Are you able to:

  • Work efficiently through the instructor-written/recorded lessons, which provide guidance through the materials.
  • Work / read practice problems from the textbook, checking your work using the e-book answers and other materials provided to help students work problems, and keeping track of practice problems.
  • Use the software for additional mini-lectures when needed to assist you in learning the material.
  • Work and submit quizzes and compare your solutions to the posted or given answers.
  • Have the ability to scan and send written homework assignments.
  • Take paper-and-pencil tests in an ACC Testing Center.
  • Work computer test problems at home if/when required.

Is the course a subject that you are strong in?

Is the course a subject that you are strong in?

If the subject is one that you dislike or are not proficient in, you will probably not enjoy working on it alone.

Do you have a sufficient amount of time to succeed and complete the course?

Do you have the time to do the work?

If you are trying to squeeze this course into an already hectic schedule, then you might have a tendency to give your distance course last priority. There is no one to remind you otherwise except yourself. You are the one responsible for keeping up with assignments.

Students taking a traditional "in-class" three-credit college math class are expected to work outside of class 2 or 3 hours a week for every one hour in class. In a distance learning class, during a sixteen-week semester, you should be spending 9-12 hours per week working on the course – even more if the course is only 11 or 12 weeks long! To be most effective, these hours should be spread over at least three different days each week.

Sticking to a Schedule

Plan your schedule carefully and stick to it. Look at your work schedule, school schedule, and family obligations. Write down the days and hours that you will work on your class. If you find yourself falling behind in your studies, look back at your calendar. Are you working on your course during those allocated hours? If not, what kinds of adjustments can you make to the calendar to get back on schedule?

Note: There are 168 hours in a week. If you are spending 40 hours a week working, 5 hours a week commuting, 5 hours a week eating, 42 hours sleeping and 30 hours with family and friends (in person, email, phone, texting), that leaves less than 48 hours to work on school. (Plus, don’t forget going to the grocery store or just taking a break!) You MUST make a schedule and stick to it to keep yourself on track. I will be happy to help you go over your week and help to set up a reasonable study schedule.

Keeping a homework log is a way of tracking your progress. Your calendar maps out the hours you intend to study; the homework log lets you know how well you are sticking to your original schedule. If you are falling behind, check to be sure that you are putting in the requisite hours. If you are putting in an inordinate number of hours for the course and you are not mastering the material, be sure to contact your instructor for help or seek tutorial help. It is essential that you seek help before you get too far behind or too frustrated.

Do you ask questions immediately when you don't understand something?

Or, is it often the case that you find yourself frustrated before asking for help? Feelings of isolation can amplify feelings of frustration or discouragement.

Do you know how to head off and/or deal with those feelings? The usual answer is to get help before you are overwhelmed, but you have to know when to ask.

Will you miss the interaction with a teacher and peers?

Communicating with Your Instructor

In a traditional class, your instructor can read the body language of the class and discern whether or not the majority of the students understand the material. In addition, you can ask questions as they come up in class and get an immediate answer.

A distance learning class is different. You will have to take the initiative and ask your instructor questions if you do not understand the material. In an Internet class, asking a question is as easy as writing an email. Or, you might have to call in and leave a message on your professor's voice mail. Either way, the response is usually not instantaneous. Move on to other material if you can as you wait for your instructor's response.

Students in online courses sometimes feel isolated. Although students in online courses are usually in regular communication with teachers and peers, they sometimes miss the real-time, face-to-face interaction.

Watch this little video to help determine if a DL class is the right choice for you.

Distance Learning can be Great

Distance learning courses provide students the ability to plan their school schedules around their lives rather than planning their lives around their school schedules. But, not all students do well in a distance learning course, let alone a distance math course.

Everyone has different learning styles and different personalities; therefore, it is important to for you to assess your own style and your own characteristics before enrolling in this course. In order to succeed in this class, you should plan to spend about 16 to 20 hours each week (or more, if necessary) working on the material, depending on how much of the material is review for you.

Where is a DL class held?

Distance learning is done primarily off-campus, at the students home or some other chosen location. For more location about the distance learning course delivery option, see the office of Distance Learning at ACC.

Where do I take my exams?

This will depend on the class. For all of my math classes you will take your exams at the ACC testing center of your choice. You are responsible for knowing the dates and times the testing center is open.

If you are not in the Austin area then you will need to contact the DL office to have a proctor set up for you in your area.

Is all of the work done on a computer?

This will depend on the class. In all of my DL courses students will have online assignments and written assignments, along with the written exams.

How do I turn i written assignments?

There are three ways to turn in your written assignments in my classes. Please watch the quick video below to see your options.

 

Written Homework - Created with Haiku Deck, presentation software that inspires

How much time will the class take up?

Students taking a traditional "in-class" three-credit college math class are expected to work outside of class 2 or 3 hours a week for every one hour in class. In a distance learning class, during a sixteen-week semester, you should be spending 9-12 hours per week working on the course – even more if the course is only 11 or 12 weeks long! To be most effective, these hours should be spread over at least three different days each week.

Technology

What kind of technology will you use in your math course?

Depending on the course you take you may use anything from a four-function calculator to Mathematica software, or even something else. It all really depends on the course, and sometimes on the individual instructor.

Here is a little information to steer you in the right direction and to help you get started once you know what you will be using.

Blackboard

Blackboard Login ImageEvery student at ACC has a Blackboard account. If you have not used Blackboard before you will need to have an ACCeID and password in order to log in. Follow this link to activate your ACCeID if you have not already done so.

Logging on to Blackboard:

1. Go to the Blackboard login page and log in using your ACCeID and password.

2. Immediately go to the "Personal Information" in the left menu and follow the link to "Set Privacy Options." You can then choose whether to make your email and other information public or not. (Note that your email address may still be available to other members of the class when you post on the discussion boards, regardless of what you choose here.) Always be sure to click on "Submit" after you have made your changes. (You do not have to do this every time you log in.) Please note that while on the "Personal Information" web page, you may also change your name, address, Social Security Number, and/or major, by viewing and printing the Student Data Change form, which you will then have to submit to any ACC Admissions & Records Office.

3. If you are registered for this course already, the course should be listed under "My Courses" on the main page when you first log into Blackboard (or click on the "Courses" tab at the top of the page).

4. Click on the "My ACC" tab at the top of the page and then check "My Announcements" for any course-related announcements.

5. Always click on "Logout" near the top center of the page when you are finished, especially on a public computer.

6. If you have never used Blackboard before, it may help to read through the "How to Log into Blackboard" page.
Getting Help with Blackboard:

The best place to start when looking for help with Blackboard is at the Blackboard login page. There is a link to Student Support on the left side of the page, which will hopefully work again soon. There is also a Blackboard Support tab at the top left side of the page, which should have helpful information if you click on that. Usually, the Help button at the top of the Blackboard login page and within Blackboard will also take you to helpful information, but it currently takes you to the Faculty Support page. You may also contact the ACC Helpdesk at (512) 223-4357 for Blackboard support issues. If you have tried this and still cannot figure something out, contact your instructor.

To access the LaunchPad site for your particular section you will need the course code. This may be found in your syllabus. LaunchPad is a web portal with many resources to support students' learning including video and "print" manuals for both Minitab and CrunchIt, lots of videos, applets, a Study Guide, and the Crunch-It statistical software.

Purchase LaunchPad to accompany the text – Do not purchase a textbook which does not include the LaunchPad access code. In fact, a paper copy of the textbook is optional since you can purchase the LaunchPad access code without the book. LaunchPad includes an eBook. If you wish to purchase a paper copy of the textbook, it is The Basic Practice of Statistics, 7th ed., by David S. Moore, William I. Notz, and Michael A. Fligner

Students in MATH 1342 are required to use Minitab but are NOT required to purchase it. Minitab is available on all computers in the learning labs and computer centers to use for free. (You will need your ACC ID.) Videos and tutorials to help you use Minitab are provided in LaunchPad and are designed to go with each individual chapter. There are also several video tutorials made by the Minitab company available on YouTube. Watch this video to see Minitab 17 software at work.

MyMathLab

MyMathLab is an interactive website where you can:

1. Self-test & work through practice exercises with step-by-step help to improve your math skills.

2. Study more efficiently with a personalized study plan and exercises that match your book.

3. Get help when YOU need it. MyMathLab includes multimedia learning aids, videos, animations, and live tutorial help.

Before You Begin:

To register for MyMathLab, you need:

1. A MyMathLab student access code (packaged with your new text, standalone at your bookstore, or available for purchase with a major credit card at www.pearsonmylab.com)

2. Your instructor’s Course ID. Every instructor's course has its own individual course ID so be sure that you have the correct course ID before trying to register in MML.

3. A valid email address. It is recommended that you use your ACCmail for you MML registration. Your instructor will send emails to your ACCmail so you wouldn't want to miss any of them.

These two videos should help answer any questions you have about MML. The first is an introduction to MML and some of its features and the second shows you how to go through the registration process.

Elementary Statistics