New Introduction to Learning Online Course available from 15 April
We’re revamping our Introduction to Learning Online Course. This new version will be a shorter course, full of bite-sized activities to help you become a pro in online learning. The new course will feature a wide range of resources, tools and tips from experts at Charles Sturt University. This free course will be available to all students from 15 April.
In the meantime, we’ve put together this new student webpage with information to help you maximise your online student experience.
Maximising your online student experience
Studying online can be exciting with opportunities to learn in new and exciting ways. However, we acknowledge that if it’s a relatively new experience, there are aspects of online learning that you need to learn about and learn how to do. And at Charles Sturt, we are all here to help you to do that!
This subject has been prepared to assist you with online learning and has been developed in response to a number of key questions related to the student experience at Charles Sturt.
Are you new to online learning or feeling concerned about your ability to learn online? chevron_right
Your Faculty, Schools and Student Services teams are here to help. This resource aims to provide you with some ways to navigate the weeks ahead as you move to online learning.
What will the online learning experience be like? chevron_right
The university has been working hard to ensure your online experience is well designed, positive and supported to enhance your educational experience. Each subject you encounter may approach this a little differently, but there are some consistent aspects that we will deal with in this subject to help you navigate this space.
The Interact2 site in each of your subjects will provide specific details of how the subject will be taught. If you have any questions about a subject please make sure you contact your Subject Coordinator as soon as you can.
Setting yourself up for online learning
It’s important to set yourself up for success. Here are some key things you will need to attend to in preparing yourself for online learning:
- Computer or device (PC, laptops, mobile devices)
- Reliable internet connection.
- Dedicated study space
- Organised time to study online
Learning in real time
There will be regular opportunities to engage in synchronous online learning and interaction with lecturers and your peers. The online meeting platforms currently used at the university are Adobe Connect and Zoom. Where online meetings are used in subjects, sessions are recorded, so if you are ever unable to attend a live session, you can generally watch the recorded meeting to review and catch up on material you missed.
Getting Started with Online meetings
Zoom provides options for Charles Sturt staff and students to have access to audio conferencing, collaboration, chat, and webinars across mobile devices, desktops, telephones, and room systems.
Access and getting started information is located at Zoom Video Conferencing. You will need to download the client before your first meeting or your will be prompted to do so once you click on your first meeting invite.
A Virtual Meeting Room (VMR) is an online space where multiple participants can join a video or audio call, share presentations and collaborate. All Charles Sturt students are assigned their own personal VMR, which can be accessed at any time, from anywhere, on almost any kind of device. Your VMR is located on the home page of the Student Portal where you are able email invites to attendees.
Information about using your Virtual Meeting Room for the first time, a test Virtual Meeting Room, and information about how other participants can join your meeting, and troubleshooting is available on the Student Portal Virtual Meeting Room support page.
Online interaction and communication
All subjects will include some forms of asynchronous communication to provide you with information and to facilitate your interaction and communication with the subject and with each other.
The following tools are the most common ones your lecturers may use in the Interact2 site:
- Discussion boards
- CSU Replay (Panopto)
- Blogs, wikis, journals
In addition to communication in the online Interact2 space, you also have the option to communicate with your lecturers via email or phone consultation. You may find that they have specific consultation times for this form of communication. Check your subject outline and the Interact2 site to see if consultation times are available and if not, contact them to ask about appropriate ways to communicate.
For collaborative assignments there is also the Virtual Meeting Room (VMR) at the bottom left of your Student Portal landing page. All Charles Sturt, students are assigned their own personal VMR, which can be accessed at any time, from anywhere, on almost any kind of device.
Preparing for assessment chevron_right
You may find that assessment tasks in your subjects may be altered or adapted to take the movement to online learning into account. Alternative options for end of session examinations are currently being looked at and will be communicated as soon as possible. If the assessment tasks in your subject are altered, your Subject Coordinator will let you know via the Announcements and/or a change to the Subject Outline.
Be prepared for changes, but at the same time, be assured that any assessment will still be examining the same learning outcomes and the same content as currently specified in your subject, which you will find in your Subject Outline.
Where to find help chevron_right
You're probably wondering, 'Where to next?' In answer to that, here are some things to move on to.
Connecting with student support
One-on-one appointments with support services are usually available via Skype, phone or email. You will be given these options when you book an appointment and instructions on how to connect will be provided in your booking confirmation email.
Charles Sturt Library
The Charles Sturt Library home page has links to information about how to access the library catalogue, journal databases, eBooks and other resources, as well as how to ;reference correctly. The Library also provides a Live Chat service and a Web Form where you can ask questions of librarians.
Study Link is Charles Sturt's uni preparation or enabling program. The suite of subjects offer short, self-paced, non-credit bearing subjects designed to help you start your degree studies with the knowledge, skills and confidence to succeed. StudyLink subjects are short (14-40 hours) and free for most Australian residents.
Academic skills help
Students at Charles Sturt have access to free study support services. Academic skills services include self-paced learning, interactive workshops, one-on-one training and online courses.
The Academic Skills team can also give you feedback on your draft assignments. It's worthwhile visiting the Academic Skills webpage to learn more about the team and what they do!
The Online Study Team
The Charles Sturt Online Study Team hold online workshops and meet with students who are studying online via Skype, phone and email. Online Study Advisors assist students to approach studying online with confidence, providing practical help with using online study tools, planning your online studies, and more.
Charlie: Your Student Voice
Charlie is your student voice. Stories, tips, hints form your fellow students. It is a student space, showcasing content produced by students, for students. You can even be paid for contributing an article to Charlie.