Frequently Asked Questions About Online Learning
Taking a course online is fun and easy to do. Anyone who can use a computer to get email can use our course management system, Sakai. Sakai offers all sorts of interactive tools that make taking an online class interactive, interesting, and fun. A high-speed internet connection is highly recommended (DSL, broadband, or satellite). To get started, look at the frequently asked questions below. If you still have questions then, contact us at 304-295-4411.
How do I know if online learning is for me?
If you have never taken a distance learning course online and are unsure whether or not distance learning is for you, then here are a couple of statements you can consider to help you determine if you have the necessary skills to be a successful distance learner:
- Must be self-reliant and self-motivated
- Must have good self-discipline
- Must have basic computer skills
- The ability to read carefully and to follow written instructions.
Students are invited to experience a free online class before signing up as a full-time student. To do this simply sign up for the free Test Drive. We will work with you one on one to train you in how to take a course online.
How do I access my classes?
- Classes are all available through a course management system known as Sakai. Log into Sakai from the IMU home page.
- Your user name is your first name.last name@imu (jane.doe@imu)
- Your password is given to you upon registration. You may change your password at any time.
What are some necessary computer operation skills for the distance learner?
- Start up and shut down your computer system and peripheral
- Identify and use icons, windows and menus
- Point, click, double-click and click and drag with mouse
- Use pull-down menus
- Select, open, move and close a window
- Start an application and create a document
- Name, save, retrieve and revise a document
- Save a document using the save and save as command
- Use printing options
What are some necessary Internet skills for the distance learner?
- Connect to the Internet through an Internet Service Provider
- Use e-mail
- Access and use resources on the World Wide Web
- Navigate to a specific Web site
What type of computer equipment do I need for distance learning?
Our Course Management System, Sakai, requires one of the following web browsers:
- Firefox (Windows, Macintosh, or Linux) – free download
- Netscape 8 (this is the same as Firefox) or other Mozilla browsers
- Internet Explorer for Windows, version 6 or higher – available through Windows update.
- You may also require additional plugins (Adobe Reader, Adobe Flash, etc.), depending on the resources that your instructor uses.
*Other web browsers such as Safari, Opera, and Konqueror may work, but are known to have some incompatibilities. Older web browsers such as Netscape 4.8 or Internet Explorer 5.5 or earlier (for Windows or Macintosh) will not work.
- An internet connection with a minimum of a 56K modem connection required to access the distance learning course material.
- Anti-virus software
- An installed anti-virus program on the computer(s) that you use for your Internet courses that has been configured to scan e-mails (both sending and receiving) and scan any fixed or removable storage device on your computer is recommended.
- Where do I take my tests for an online learning course?
- While some courses require Skype testing or phone testing most have all of the tests done online.