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Am I Ready?

 

 

image5KSU students registering for an online course are required to complete the online student readiness assessment. The completion records are stored in Owl Express and instructors will verify completion prior to the start of online course.

KSU Distance Learning relies on SmarterMeasure, an online learner readiness assessment to help students determine the planning and resources needed to succeed in a technology rich learning environment. SmarterMeasure helps students prepare for a successful distance learning experience. Students are not penalized for guessing on SmarterMeasure. Upon completion of the assessment, students receive a score report which will explain existing strengths, opportunities for improvement, and access to resources to promote a successful learning experience.

 

I am a Campus Student. Can I Register for Online Courses?

 

 

image3Yes, students can combine on-campus and online courses based on their needs and preferences. Some programs are cohort-based online programs that specify separate admission requirements and processes. These programs do not open registration to all KSU students. Existing KSU students can search for available online courses through the KSU Online Course Search Tool or through Owl Express.

Registration preference for online courses is given to students that are designated Web Learners. The Web Learners program is for students that plan to complete their entire course of study in online programs.

 

What are the Benefits of a Registering as a Web Learner?

 

 

image5The KSU Web-Learners program is designed for students enrolled in online programs at KSU, or for students that opt to complete full semesters online. It is open to any student in good academic standing.

As a KSU Web-Learner, students benefit from a reduction in campus-related fees and receive priority registration for online courses. As a result of non-fee payment, Web Learners are not eligible to use the campus services supported by those fees. Students that wish to use the campus services supported by the student fees may do so by paying the fee associated with the specific service (outlined below). These services include the recreational facilities, health center, parking, and other campus services supported by student fees.

Students must register for the Web Learners Program by the associated semester deadlines (see below).  If students choose later not to participate in the Program, they must opt out since Web Learners are not allowed to register for face-to-face classes.

Out-of-state students who enroll in the Web Learners Program will pay the online rate plus the in-state tuition rather than the normal out-of-state tuition.

Effective Spring 2012, the Student Services Fee (Recreation, Student Activity, Athletic, Global Learning, Land Acquisition, Health and Transportation) and Parking Permit Fees will be waived for any student taking all online courses, regardless of the discipline. The Institutional and Technology Fees are mandatory for all students and are not waived.

 

What are the Benefits of Distance Learning?

 

 

Distance learning provides considerable freedom, allowing students to often choose when and where they'll participate in class activities. But students will have the same kinds of deadlines and structured responsibilities of a face-to-face class. In other words, flexibility must be balanced by responsibility. Like a face-to-face course, online courses require that assignments be completed by due dates, attendance (via your logins to your course), involvement in online discussions, and sometimes group collaboration. Most students enjoy the active learning that online classes involve.

• Save time and money spent commuting to a campus
• Continue working at your current job while you are taking classes
• Attend your class from anywhere as long as you have a high-speed internet connection
• Learn at your own pace and study at your convenience
• Learning new technologies
• Interact on equal footing

 

What are the Challenges of Distance Learning?

 

 

Distance learning is not easier that traditional classroom learning. While the benefits are many, students that enroll in an online course because they believe it is easier, soon learn differently. Self-motivation and discipline are required to succeed in distance learning courses. For many, distance learning offers access to education not previously available. It also provides a solution to flexibility needs, work and travel responsibilities, and family challenges.

A successful experience in distance learning requires a basic familiarity with technology. Resources are available for students through Information Technology Services for those interested in distance learning, but in need of a technology refresher. It is also strongly recommended that students have ready access to a computer or laptop with a high-speed Internet access, such as DSL or cable broadband. Online courses will require students to download and access course materials.

Distance learning success depending on preparation, motivation, dedication, and planning. If you are interested in completing an online degree or registering for an online course, please take the Online Student Readiness Assessment. The results will provide you with some helpful suggestions on how to best prepare yourself for a successful distance learning experience.

Do Online Courses Cost More (e-Tuition)?

 

 

image5Online courses at Kennesaw State University do cost more than on-campus courses. Undergraduate online courses are charged an e-tuition rate of $100 per credit hour ($300 for a 3-credit hour course) in addition to the in-state tuition rate. Graduate online courses are charged an e-tuition rate of $125 per credit hour ($375 for a 3-credit hour course) in addition to the in-state tuition rate.  The online tuition rates apply whether or not you have signed up for the Web Learners Program.

The e-tuition rate was put into effect in Fall of 2008 to help support a growing need for technology infrastructure and the support of distance learning initiatives. The e-tuition helps to strategically ensure the high quality of online courses and programs. KSU online courses are not differentiated from face-to-face courses in terms of expectations, rigors, and learning outcomes. The resources needed for online courses to equal the on-campus experience are substantial.

KSU subscribes to the Quality Matters (QM) program; a faculty-centered, peer review process that certifies the quality of online courses.  The Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning (CETL) also partners with QM to train and certify faculty in the development and teaching of online courses. Each online course is peer-reviewed by a team of three faculty members and certified prior to being offered. This process ensures that the online courses offered at KSU are based in national standards of best practices and instructional design principles. 

With the help of the e-tuition, the Distance Learning Center was established in the fall of 2010 to provide centralized leadership, support and resources to the university, colleges, faculty and students in the growth, administration, creation, and enhancement of high quality distance learning activities. The e-tuition supports this mission through investment in technology infrastructure, instructional technology resources and student support resources (DLC helpdesk, ITS student helpdesk, training and virtual labs for web learners).  The e-tuition is allocated to the CIO's office for technology support, the Distance Learning Center for campus support, and the colleges for the strategic support of their distance learning initiatives. 

 

What is the Difference between Online Course and Hybrid Course?

 

 

image5Online Course – Online courses at KSU are delivered 95% or more via distance education technology. Students will engage with faculty, content, and colleagues virtually. Online learners may live in diverse areas and time zones, though occasionally a faculty member may request a campus visit for orientation or testing.

Students with an updated address of more than 25 miles from campus may request a proctored examination in lieu of traveling to campus for a required examination.

Hybrid Course – Hybrid courses at KSU are 50% on-campus classroom based and 50% distance education technology. Students can expect out of class activities that are conducted via the Learning Management System. These will include engagement with faculty content and colleagues virtually. Activities may include discussion activities, virtual team meetings, wiki, and blog activities, and self-guided assessments and evaluations.

Technology Enhanced – Technology enhanced courses at KSU are on-campus classroom based courses that may leverage distance learning technologies to provide content, engagement, and resource opportunities.

 

What Equipment and Technology will I Need?

 

 

Computer:
Distance Learners will need reliable access to a desktop or laptop computer that has adequate memory and processing capabilities for large file downloads, video players, and synchronous meeting applications. Information Technology Services provides recommended specifications: http://its.kennesaw.edu/students/gettingstarted.html

Auxiliary Equipment:
The Distance Learning Center also strongly recommends a WebCam and Headset for video-based communication. Many newer laptop or monitor set-ups are pre-equipped. These items may be required by faculty on a course by course basis.

Internet Access:
Online courses at KSU use the web to deliver courses at a distance. So, to learn in an online course smoothly, you need a high-speed Internet connection (such as DSL, Broadband, etc). This is especially important to the distance learning experience.

Software:
While this will vary by course, you will need a recent version of the Microsoft Office Suite.  Access to MS Word, MS PowerPoint, and MS Excel are expected and necessary for viewing course material or completing the assignment. Software such as MSWord, PowerPoint and Excel are suggested for viewing course material and completing assignments. Additional requirements include anti-virus protection, windows media player, QuickTime movie player, and a compatible browser. Visit http://its.kennesaw.edu/students/ for additional information on software training, compatibility and available downloads.

 

What is the Amount of Time Needed for One Online Course?

 

 

image5An online student can expect to spend at least as much time in an online course as they would in a face-to-face course, and sometimes more. To give you a point of reference, for a 3-credit hour online course in a typical 16-weeks session, a student should expect to spend approximately 6-9 hours per week engaged in class work. In the summer semester, with the compressed 8-week schedule, the time dedicated per course will significantly increase. The notion that online courses are easier is not true. They are more convenient, but still require the same dedication and attention as a face-to-face course.

 

How do I Get Started with Desire2Learn (D2L)

 

 

KSU access to Desire2Learn (D2L) for both faculty and students is through: https://kennesaw2.view.usg.edu/ (Use your KSU NetID to log in).

Students will gain access to their D2L courses a few days before the start of each term. After students are loaded, the students will see in D2L all courses for which they are registered.

If a student registers during late registration/drop-add, it may take up to 48 hours to gain access to the course. Students are encouraged to contact their faculty member if they join a class during late registration. The faculty member may be able to assist in gaining immediate access to the course.

To become familiar with Desire2Learn, visit the D2L Video Introduction and the Student Resources

 

How is my E-Tuition Applied?

 

 

The e-tuition rate was put into effect in Fall of 2008 to help support a growing need for technology infrastructure and to support KSU’s distance learning initiatives. The e-tuition helps to ensure the high quality of online courses and programs. Our online courses are not differentiated from face-to-face courses in terms of expectations, rigor, and learning outcomes. Students receiving online degrees from KSU receive the same diploma as students attending traditional campus degree programs.

Developing and maintaining high-quality online programs and making sure these are equivalent to our on-campus programs requires substantial resources. KSU subscribes to the Quality Matters (QM) program; a faculty-centered, peer review process that certifies the quality of online courses.  The Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning (CETL) also partners with QM to train and certify faculty in the development and teaching of online courses. Each online course is peer-reviewed by a team of three faculty members and certified prior to being offered. This process ensures that the online courses offered at KSU are based in national standards of best practices and instructional design principles. 

With the help of the e-tuition, the Distance Learning Center was established in the fall of 2010 to provide centralized leadership, support and resources to the university, colleges, faculty and students in the growth, administration, creation, and enhancement of high quality distance learning activities. The e-tuition supports this mission through investment in technology infrastructure, instructional technology resources and student support resources (DLC helpdesk, ITS student helpdesk, training and virtual labs for web learners).  The e-tuition is allocated to the CIO's office for technology support, the Distance Learning Center for campus support, and the colleges for the strategic support of their distance learning initiatives. 

Since the fall of 2010, e-tuition was also used to create and maintain the DLC web-presence, student online readiness tools, and a new registration system to list Hybrid and Fully online courses clearly. E-tuition funding has also enabled KSU to purchase a closed captioning system for course videos to ensure ADA compliance which offers online course access to students who are hearing impaired. Inter-departmental collaborations are also working to increase the number of mobile web applications on campus.

In the Distance Learning Center, online students have a strong advocate. Beginning in the spring of 2012, students enrolled as Web Learners (taking only online classes) will have many of the student services fees waived; paying only the technology and institutional fees (https://web.kennesaw.edu/registrar/students/web_learner_main). Yet those students with geographic accessibility, wishing to utilize campus resources, may do so by paying the fee associated with the service. Web Learners are an integral and valued part of the campus community.

 

I am an Online Student, How do I Obtain my KSU ID Card?

 

 

image5Students enrolled in online degree programs may obtain KSU ID's through their program directors or by visiting card services on campus. Photo ID verification will be required by an authorized employee of Kennesaw State University.