Welcome to the North Carolina Virtual Public School Getting Started module. This module will take you through what online is, how to be successful in

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1 Welcome to the North Carolina Virtual Public School Getting Started module. This module will take you through what online is, how to be successful in an online course, and how to work in your course. 1

2 Your completion of the Getting Started module will be broken up into several components. The course rubric shows that you will go through seven parts in this unit: a welcome, questions forum, communication tools, submitting assignments, managing forum posts, our grading policy, the gradebook. 2

3 Have you ever taken an online course before? If you have, you understand all the advantages to online learning: accessibility, flexibility, college preparation, student - teacher communication, and student-student communication. Each of the following lessons demonstrate some of the many advantages to taking an online course. If you are new to online learning, you are in for a real treat! Just sit back and enjoy the ride because you have now been transported to a new and exciting form of education: online learning. 3

4 After you read and view the following activity, you will also complete your first assignment in the course: a forum post. Be sure to carefully read the information and follow directions. Now let's get started! Let's move through the activity ahead. 4

5 Welcome to online learning and to our course! We are excited you have enrolled in this course and look forward to a great term with you. The purpose of this activity is to acquaint you with the course, your peers, and Moodle components. You will find helpful information about NCVPS and about how to be successful in an online course. Also, it's important to know that online courses require a lot of time, dedication, and work. Just as in a face-to-face environment, you have assignments, quizzes, tests,discussions, and projects each day. You also have an instructor who will communicate with you and assess your work daily. To begin, click on the first bullet below - moving left to right. 5

6 On the next slide, you'll see six characteristics of a successful online learner. To read more about what type of online learner you are, visit our Quick Reference Guide. 6

7 7

8 All you need to do to prepare yourself for a successful experience at NCVPS is listed below: Do the following items before the first day of class: Complete this orientation! Be aware of important dates for the upcoming semester. Find our calendars here. Make sure you have the textbook(s) and/or materials you need for your course(s). Ask your ELA what textbooks and/or materials you need for you course. Do this before class begins. Click here see course descriptions, textbooks and materials, and technical requirements for each course. Be sure that your e-learning advisor at your school has given you your username and password. NCVPS does NOT send usernames and passwords to students. 8

9 Follow this to learn about the NCVPS student conduct guidelines. You will read about the importance of academic integrity, acceptable communications, acceptable use guidelines, and disciplinary actions. Student Conduct Guidelines 9

10 The Tech Help Center can help students with access issues, password resets, and error messages that might occur within the course. If you have a technical issue with your courses or accessing your course, complete an online ticket here: Just click on "Open a New Ticket." A valid will be required for ticket submission - so make sure you are ready to check your inbox! Online tickets will be addressed throughout the business day. We will handle these in the order they are opened. When opening an online ticket include your name, valid , userid, course, instructor info, and a full description of the issue. If you need to speak with a technology representative, call the help desk phone number at * during operating hours (8am-4pm, Monday-Friday except state holidays). *This is NOT a toll-free number and charges may apply. Your Instructor Contact information for instructors can be found in the Instructor block each time you login to your course. Your instructor can help with the following: Answer course content questions Reset tests and quizzes Fix dead links 10

11 Answer basic Moodle questions E-Learning Advisor Each school has a E-Learning Advisor (ELA). Your ELA can help you with registration issues. If you have trouble contacting your instructor, you should contact your ELA for help. Peer Tutoring Peer tutors can helps students in numerous areas. Follow this link for peer tutoring details. 10

12 Now that you have a better idea of what is involved in online learning, do you have any questions or concerns? This is the time to ask! You will post your questions or concerns in a Forum post for the Getting Started Module. Your teacher will read your post, address your concerns, and answer your questions. Instructor feedback is not instant, but instructors will answer your questions in a timely manner 11

13 NCVPS uses a variety of communication tools. This next activity will cover the most common tools your teacher may decide to incorporate throughout your course. These tools include: Moodle Messaging Blackboard Instant Messaging Daily Announcements 12

14 Begin with the center layer of this image and examine each part to see the full picture of how are communication tools are put together. You: This course is all about you and your success as a NCVPS student. While you are the center of all communication in your experience, this second layer focuses on student-teacher or student-student direct communication. There may be occasions when you and your instruct may need to each other directly. If you do, please make sure all communication is with our NCVPS system. Your teacher's address will include If you have your own , you can also list it in your Moodle Profile to receive forum posts and messages from Moodle. Moodle Messages: The Moodle Messaging system is an internal system used to leave notes with one another. If you have registered your account with an address, you will receive copies of these messages via . BB Instant Messenger: Blackboard Instant Messaging may be used in your course. It is a standalone application that runs on your local computer. It allows your teacher to communicate directly with you, in real time - where Moodle Messages and are not ideal for live conversations. 13

15 Forums: The third layer of communication focuses on whole group interactions. You will be able to see unread forum posts when you log into Moodle. Forums will be one of the largest components of course communication. We will talk about Forums later on in this unit. The Learning Block: Our Learning Block, formerly labeled as daily announcements, are what sets NCVPS courses apart from all other online programs. They are timely and personal. Make sure you check these every day. Remember that you can set up your account to send ed announcements. 13

16 Throughout the semester, your teacher will require you to submit a variety of assignment types. They include: Forums Advanced uploading of a file Quizzes 14

17 In order for your worked to be graded, your teacher will provide clear directions for submitting your work. We have three major ways of formulating your grades. We use Forums, Advanced Upload of Files, and Quizzes. We will dive into each of these in greater detail. 15

18 You will discover that your course offers many opportunities for questions (and answers) from you. These will typically take place in forums. Forums offer a variety of ways to share thoughts. Make sure to follow instructions carefully as some forums may require you to post your own response prior to being able to join in on the conversation. This will give you the chance to submit your own unique answers before seeing others. Some forums even allow for you to add attachments and even embed media to make a more engaging conversation. 16

19 A majority of your assignments will be submitted through the Assignment type in Moodle. These activities allow you to take files located on your computer and send them to your teacher for feedback and grading. Some of these assignments will allow you to include a personal note with your file upload. 17

20 Once you've selected your file, you can send it for grading. Once you click on the Submit button on the previous screen, you'll receive a final warning that you will no longer be able to change this assignment once it is sent. In addition to this, you ll see an acknowledgement of your work being authentic. You must check this box before clicking Continue once you're ready. Once you ve turned it in you can not update it. 18

21 Throughout your course, you will have a variety of quizzes. Depending on the purpose of these quizzes and tests, you may receive a grade or you might simply be asked to take a pre-assessment or a status check along the way. There are a variety of options for each of these, so make sure you read the directions carefully. Many quizzes will give you a chance to review your answers before submitting for a grade. Others may even allow you to see what the correct answers were to guide you in your progress through a course. This image demonstrates one way of seeing which questions were missed and which were correct, the total score, and some feedback to guide you through items you may have missed. 19

22 A large portion of your courses conversations will come from Forums. The next activity focuses on how to navigate, participate, and manage these conversations. 20

23 Each forum will contain it's own set of instructions. Make sure to pay close attention to how your teacher wants you to structure your discussion. Most teachers prefer that replies are posted in the proper location and new topics are set up as a separate item in that forum. 21

24 You have a couple of options when participating in forums. You may add a new topic or reply to another discussion thread. In addition to these settings you'll see the option to edit your post within a predetermined number of minutes. This option may be turned off by your teacher, if required for the assignment. To edit or delete a post, you must be the author. 22

25 This is one of the most helpful parts of this activity. Every NCVPS course should contain an Activity block, typically underneath the Teacher block on the left side. Any activities in your course should be grouped into categories. To get to the Forums page, click on Forums. From here, you'll be able to see all the conversations in your course. Forums are arranged in the same order they appear in your course. They are sorted by Topic (module or unit), the name of the forum, and the description. In addition to that, when given the option, you can view the number of discussions in each forum, the number of unread posts, the ability to track unread items, and (optionally) a chance to subscribe to forums via . Make sure that your profile contains a valid address. This is the end of the Managing Forum Posts activity. Please continue to the Managing Forum Posts quiz. 23

26 NCVPS has a standard grading policy. Please review the following documentation to help you better understand how our grading policy works. 24

27 The official NCVPS Grading Policy Quick Reference Guide can be downloaded here. This activity will take you through an in depth exploration of our grading policy. It is setup as a Frequently Asked Questions interactive document. Feel free to jump to the questions you'd like to learn more about. 25

28 Standard Grading Scale for Block Classes (Fall and Spring Sessions) Midterm: 37.5% (First Grade Report) End Term: 37.5% (Second Grade Report) *Final Exam: 25% 26

29 Standard Grading Scale for Yearlong Classes 18.75% (First Grade Report) 18.75% (Second Grade Report) 18.75% (Third Grade Report) 18.75% (Fourth Grade Report) 25% (Exam)* 27

30 Standard Grading Scale for Summer Classes 75% Cumulative grade for all course work 25% Final Project or Final Exam* 28

31 The Final Exam for EOC and CTE courses will be the EOC and VOCATS score. Schools are responsible for the administration of all EOC and CTE tests. For those courses, the grades that NCVPS reports to the school will be 75% of the final grade. Schools will score the EOCs and CTEs and average in the remaining 25% to determine the final grade. 29

32 NCVPS will report one cumulative grade for the summer session. The cumulative grades NCVPS reports to the school for EOC and CTE courses during the summer session will be 75% of the final grade. *SAT Prep will not have a final exam because of the two-part nature of the course. 30

33 Once all units of the Credit Recovery course are mastered, NCVPS will notify the school of the student s completion of the course and a final numerical grade earned for the course on the final grade report. EOC testing will be the responsibility of the school; the school will also need to calculate the student s final grade using the NCVPS final course grade (75%) and the EOC grade (25%). Beginning in the Fall of 2011: As described by the North Carolina State Board of Education, beginning in the Fall of 2011, all courses taken as credit recovery, despite the program, can only receive a final designation of PASS or FAIL. No final numerical grades may be given for these courses. If a student wishes to take a failed course in order to earn a final grade, credit recovery courses should not be taken. Here is the Executive Summary released by the North Carolina State Board of Education: 31

34 NCVPS will report one cumulative grade for the summer session. The cumulative grades NCVPS reports to the school for EOC and CTE courses during the summer session will be 75% of the final grade. *SAT Prep will not have a final exam because of the two-part nature of the course. 32

35 NCVPS will report one cumulative grade for the summer session. The cumulative grades NCVPS reports to the school for EOC and CTE courses during the summer session will be 75% of the final grade. *SAT Prep will not have a final exam because of the two-part nature of the course. 33

36 Each course has a separate gradebook. To access your grades, click on Grades in the Settings block. To switch between the full grade report, and overall grade for your course. Click on Overview or User report. 34

37 The Moodle Gradebook is fairly easy to navigate. Make sure to click through all the interactive labels to learn more about the layout of your gradebook. 35

38 The Moodle Gradebook is fairly easy to navigate. Make sure to click through all the interactive labels to learn more about the layout of your gradebook. 36

39 If it applies, your assignments will designate whether or not your assignment's grade is at mastery or not. This will appear in the Grade column. 37

40 Your category totals indicate how you are doing for a particular unit, module, topic, or grading period. This will help serve as an indicator of how you are doing each step of the way. 38

41 As you progress through your course, the feedback column can give you a better perspective of how your work is improving. This is particularly useful when reviewing for assessments. 39

42 Make sure you have a solid understanding of the materials presented so far. Make sure you post any questions in the Getting Started Questions & Concerns forum. Complete your Getting Started final quiz, located at the top of your Moodle course. Start your course with NCVPS. 40

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