Online Courses Tips and Tricks
Feeling nervous about taking courses online? We are here to help.
As you think about going online with your coursework, here are some tips and tricks to get you started:
- Be kind to yourself, your classmates, and your professors. This is new for many of us, so don’t be too hard on yourself and provide support to your peers when needed.
- Plan your academic time now. Take out your calendar or planner right now. As due dates and expectations change, write them down. Block off designated “school” time in your day and commit to it. One of the biggest challenges of online learning is time management and personal accountability, especially for those of you with time-consuming family situations. If you need help with planning, contact the Center for Student Success.
- Do the work your professors assign. If your professor assigns you a video to watch, watch it. If the professor assigns you reading, read it. If your professor asks you to engage in a discussion in a discussion board, do it. Professors are being very thoughtful right now as to what work they are expecting of you during this turbulent time. Remember that your actual contact time with professors will vary depending on the format they are using, which puts a little more of the burden on you to take charge of your own learning.
- Be transparent with your faculty, family, and friends. This is going to impact everyone differently, so open up to others around you about what you are experiencing. If you are lost and need help, contact your instructor. If you are struggling with competing obligations and time management, talk to your loved ones about what you need from them to be successful. Relying on your network of resources will make this easier.
- Ask for help. We may not be in the classroom together, but we are all still here for you. See the list of resources below as to where to go for help.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are online classes going to be as good as face-to-face classes?
- Your instructors are designing the online coursework with the primary learning objectives in mind, and we are confident you can and will learn. But some of you are new to this, and so are some of your instructors. Be patient with your instructors and yourself if everything is not perfect. Let your instructors know what is and what is not working, and you can work together to create the best educational experience we can under the circumstances.
What should I do to get ready?
- Get organized and commit to being successful.
- Plan out how you will spend your days, taking into account your other competing demands and responsibilities.
- Ensure that you have the necessary technology/software as indicated by your instructor.
What if I don't have a home computer or the internet?
- Many of our platforms can be accessed on your phone. If you have concerns, please contact your professor immediately.
Will this make the work easier?
- Probably not, especially while you are getting used to learning in this way. Do not assume that online work is easier than face-to-face. Sure, you can do it from the comfort of your own home, but you have to be willing to hold yourself accountable and reach out for help when needed.
Are there support services available to me?
- Yes, the Center for Student Success is available for questions and coaching. The Centralized Tutoring Center is offering online tutoring and writing support in line with its regular offerings. Contact your professors for more information on specific support for your coursework. If you need additional accommodations for learning in this environment
Forward your office phone to your cell or home phone from your office:
- To accomplish forwarding your phone from off campus, you will need to submit a ticket to the ITS Help Desk. The default for all phones is to allow forwarding to only Connecticut numbers. Please make sure to include this infomation in your submitted ticket.
Returning calls from your personal phone:
- If you are calling someone from your cell phone and do not want them to have your cell phone number, dial *67 before entering the phone number you wish to call. This will cause your phone number to appear as “Private” or “Restricted” on their caller ID.
- Dial 860-768-5522
- Press *
- Enter your extension, followed by #
- Enter your password, followed by #
Sign Up for a WebEx Account
- Go to hartford.webex.com
- Click on “Log In” in the upper right corner of the page.
- Click on the “Sign Up” button
- Fill out and then submit the form by clicking the “Sign Up Now” button.
VPN Install Guide
- Employees working remotely can install a VPN, or Virtual Private Network, which creates a secure tunnel between your device and the on-campus network of the University of Hartford. This allows you access to resources blocked by our firewall, such as Remote Desktop or access to shared drives.
- For installation details, download the VNP Install Guide.
Please see guidelines for setting up an out-of-office message for your UHart email.
- Please continue to use FCLD's website as a resource. There are more virtual workshops being added all the time on a wide variety of technology.
- Jean McGivney Burelle and other colleagues at CTEI have been organizing formal and informal learning groups. These groups are more about pedagogy than technology, focusing on how to teach and learn most effectively online.
- Email Julie Sochacki at firstname.lastname@example.org, Kat Owens at email@example.com, or Sundeep Muppidi at Muppidi@hartford.edu to join a Facebook group about this topic.
- ITS is available to help with technology. Even if the office closes, there will be 6 people on at all times to answer emails and phone calls.