Category Archives: Academics

Where does the time go?

Do you know where your time goes? It seems that the older you get, the more responsibilities are put on you. Take this brief quiz via Virginia Tech’s website to determine just how much time you have to dedicate to your studies.

If the time left over is not equivalent to at least twice the number of credits you are enrolled in, you do not have enough time allotted for your studies. But, there are things you can do; such as reducing the time spent on some activities/responsibilities, adjusting your work hours, or adjusting the number of credits you take in a semester.stepbros

When one can’t reduce their time on activities or responsibilities or work; that leaves the number of credits one should take in a semester. Many students I talk with want to be able to do it all – work full-time, go to college full-time, take care of their family, etc.

Course load is often the only factor that can be manipulated; but students do not want to delay their educational goals. This is certainly admirable; but, if one does not have enough time to complete their course work accurately and on-time, and study effectively for exams; one’s grades will suffer and it can take longer to reach your goals. Take a look at the weekly study time chart to plan out your schedule.

I encourage you to take the quiz to see where your time goes and ask yourself: confused man holding question markDo you have enough time in the week to dedicate to your studies?

Are you using the time efficiently?

Do you find you do not have enough time?

What can you reduce or eliminate from your schedule to make more time?

Watch the Time Management: Strategies for Success video by StudentLingo to obtain some great tips on managing your time effectively!

-Written by ELI Counselor, Kim Burkle

ELI Counselors can be reached at 703.323.3347 or ELICounselors@nvcc.edu.

Spring Registration

Open registration for new NOVA students for the spring semester  begins today, Monday, November 13!

To review a list of available courses, please click here (Select ELI under Campus/Center).Computer screen

If you need assistance, we are here for you:

Do you need help registering for the course?  For step-by-step online registration instructions, please click here.  If you need additional assistance, please contact us at 703.323.3347 or ELISuccess@nvcc.edu.

Do you need help with course selection? If you have not been assigned a faculty advisor you can contact an ELI Counselor at elicounselors@nvcc.edu for assistance with course selection. If you would like to schedule a phone call with an academic counselor, please include your contact information. Use your VCCS student email and include your student ID# when emailing.

Are you a visiting/transient student? If you are attempting to enroll in a course at NOVA for which you believe you have successfully completed (a grade of “C“ or higher) the required prerequisite(s) at an accredited college or university, you will need to work with an advisor before being permitted to enroll in courses at NOVA. More information at the Visiting and Transient Student webpage or reach out to a Virtual Advisor at AcademicAdvising@nvcc.edu.

Are you new to ELI?  We encourage you to attend an ELI Orientation webinar! The ELI Orientation will focus on answering key questions to getting started. For more information and to register for a session, click here.

Do you have questions about Tuition and Payment? For payment due dates, methods, and online payment instructions, please click here. Make sure to have your tuition paid or financial aid in place before the deadline, so you are not dropped from your courses.

If you are looking for additional resources to help you achieve academic success, the ELI Student Services Team is here for you! You can access free online tutoringwebinars, and free online workshops to help you succeed in your ELI courses.

We also encourage you to take the SmarterMeasure assessment to gauge your readiness for online learning.

You can reach us at 703.323.3347 or visit us at http://eli.nvcc.edu/

Wrap up from advising week blog series

That’s a wrap for our Advising Week blog series, but that doesn’t mean it’s over! Still have questions about spring registration? Let us know!

Take some time to reflect on what you have learned this week. Go back and review past posts to dig a little deeper. Missed any of the live sessions? Request a recording.

Here are a few tips to help you move forward:

coffee breakUse the Student Success Planner to build your academic plan and compare your plan to program requirements.

Take a moment to facilitate a time study. Summer sessions will run at an accelerated pace, so make sure you are planning your schedule around the shorter session length availability. For fall, you have different options for session length (16, 12, or 8 weeks). Make sure you have enough time to devote to the courses you take on. What has worked in the past? What hasn’t worked? Check out StudentLingo and ELI webinars on time management.

Review your Advisement Report. Access NOVAConnect to run an advisement report to view your progress and outstanding degree requirements.

Take a moment to reflect upon your career planning. If you need more information about career options or would like to learn about a resource to help you build a career plan. Go back and review past blog posts posted by ELI’s Career Counselor to help you Focus on Career Planning, and take advantage of Free Job Search Tools!

Communicate with your advisor about your academic and career goals. Be sure to take a moment to review your plans for both the summer term (registration is occurring now) and the fall semester. Plan to have your academic plan,  advisement report, and/or career plan handy when communicating with your advisor.

If you have not declared a program of study or are not pursuing a specific program at NOVA connect with an academic counselor or advisor for assistance.

Ready to enroll? Follow this tutorial to help you add your courses in NOVA Connect.

Reach out to the Student Services offices or Virtual Advisors with any questions you have as you are planning your courses.

This Advising Week Series will focus on academic planning, connecting with your advisor, and preparing for your upcoming terms. Throughout Advising Week the ELI Student Blog will provide you with tools to plan effectively, resources to help guide your decisions, and answers to frequently asked questions throughout the process. Take advantage of Advising Week events on campus or virtually as you plan your schedule and register for courses. Reach out to the Student Services offices or Virtual Advisors with any questions you have as you are planning your courses.

Connect with your Faculty Advisor

Your Faculty Advisor is a valuable asset in your academic journey. They can provide insights and recommendations based on their education and real world experience. Take advantage of their knowledge and expertise in your program of interest!Plan early for your next semester with your Faculty Advisor and have your courses selected and be ready to register on your Priority Registration date. This will give you the best chances at getting the courses you need. Registering early will also be beneficial for students who use NOVA’s TMS payment plan allowing for a lower down payment and more months to break up your remaining tuition balance.

How can my Faculty Advisor help me?

  • Create an academic program completion plan, which maps out which courses you need to take for your major/program of study.
  • Select which electives will support your academic goal/career plans.
  • Connect with NOVA resources you need and make referrals.
  • Submit the appropriate forms for substitution requests or changing your major.
  • Reflect on your academic performance, so you can be successful.
  • Serve as a reference or assist in preparing letters of recommendation for applications (transfer, employment and scholarship).
  • Review your academic progress to help assure you complete your program based on your goals

How do I address my Faculty Advisor?

  • Address the Faculty Advisor as “Professor and their last name.” If you know they have earned a Ph.D., or Ed.D. address them as “Doctor and their last name”. (i.e. Professor Jones or  Dr. Smith).
  • Be sure to send your email from your NOVA student email account and include your Student ID number.
  • As an ELI student, you may not meet your Faculty Advisor in person. Project yourself as a professional and dedicated student by composing a well-organized and thoughtful email. Take advantage of these Ten Quick Steps to Email Your Instructor.

What can I include in my correspondence to my advisor?

  • Outline topics or questions you would like to discuss. (i.e. transfer plans, career opportunities, extracurricular/club involvement).
  • Review your program requirements in the catalog and ask any questions you may have about unsatisfied requirements.
  • Identify courses you may be interested in for the upcoming term and year.

Suggested Questions and Topics to discuss:

  • What courses do I need to complete my academic program?
  • What are the prerequisites for the courses I plan to take or where can I find them?
  • I would like to discuss my academic goals.
  • What do I need to know about transferring? Are there deadlines and scholarships?
  • I need a tutor.  How do I find one and access other services when I need help?
  • I need to work. How can I arrange my classes around my work schedule and how will working impact my studies?
  • I am interested in participating in extracurricular and co-curricular activities.  Can we discuss my academic goals and extracurricular and co-curricular activities.
  • Ask your advisor to share how they chose their major in college.

The last part of the semester is always hectic, reach out to your faculty advisor now!

Attend a Getting Ready for Your Next Semester webinar.  Learn more about the webinar and register for an upcoming session here. Undecided or just getting started on your degree plan? Talk to an Academic Counselor to help you get started with your next term classes. ELI Academic Counselors can be reached at ELICounselors@nvcc.edu.

It’s Advising Week

Advising Week is offered every fall and spring at NOVA as a time for students to reflect upon their academic goals and career development in preparation for planning and evaluating their schedule for next semester. Advising week for spring 2018 will be held this week – November 6 – 10. Priority registration for continuing NOVA students begins on Monday, November 6.Get the most out of Advising Week by following the steps below:

  1. Attend the Advising Week Webinar Series: Getting Ready for Your Next Semester webinar designed specifically for you to select your next semester courses, verify your degree plan on your account and revisit your academic and career goals. Learn more about the webinar and register for the session.
  2. Use the Student Success Planner to build your academic plan and compare your plan to program requirements.
  3. Review your Advisement Report.  Access NOVAConnect to run an advisement report to view your progress and outstanding degree requirements.
  4. Take a moment to reflect upon your career planning. If you need more information about career options or would like to learn about a resource to help you build a career plan consider attending a webinar or two in the Career Development Webinar Series to Support National Career Development Month.  Learn more about the webinars and register for the session.
  5. Communicate with your advisor about your academic and career goals.  Be sure to take a moment to review your plans for the spring semester. Plan to have your academic plan,  advisement report, and/or career plan handy when communicating with your advisor.

If you have not declared a program of study or are not pursuing a specific program at NOVA connect with an academic counselor or advisor for assistance. Open spring registration for all students begins on Monday, November 13.  Priority registration for continuing NOVA students begins on Monday, November 6.

This Advising Week Series will focus on academic planning, connecting with your advisor, and preparing for your upcoming terms. Throughout Advising Week the ELI Student Blog will provide you with tools to plan effectively, resources to help guide your decisions, and answers to frequently asked questions throughout the process. Take advantage of Advising Week events on campus or virtually as you plan your schedule and register for courses. Reach out to the Student Services offices or Virtual Advisors with any questions you have as you are planning your courses.

Get Ready for Advising Week

Advising week is almost here! To make the most of the interaction with your advisor there are a few things you can do to prepare. Are you ready

Participate in the Advising Week Webinar Series: Getting Ready for Your Next Semester webinars will be available over the next two weeks to help you select your next semester courses, verify your degree plan on your account, and revisit your academic and career goals. Learn more about the webinars and register for a group advising session.  

Verify your program of Study:  First it is important to verify your student record reflects the program of study you intend on completing here at NOVA. Visit the Academics section of your Student Center in the Student Information System to verify your plan. If your plan needs to be updated make contact with an academic counselor or advisor to determine which plan is the best for you based on your goals.

Run an Advisement Report: Once your program of study is accurate there are several tools you can take advantage of to see your progress towards your plan’s requirements and the courses you have left to complete. You can run an advisement report to view your progress and outstanding degree requirements.

Review program requirements: Now that you’ve run your advisement report, review the report to see how the coursework you have completed has been applied towards your degree requirements and what you have left to complete.

Plan your semester: You can use the Student Success Planner to create a plan, allowing you to map out when you will complete your remaining courses. As you plan out these courses semester by semester, strive for balance in your course schedule. Use these tips to help you strategize. Don’t delay in taking courses that are challenging for you, especially math.

Request to meet with your Advisor: Once you have our courses mapped out in the Student Success Planner you can even send a meeting request to discuss your plan to your advisor.

This Advising Week Series will focus on academic planning, connecting with your advisor, and preparing for your upcoming terms. Throughout Advising Week the ELI Student Blog will provide you with tools to plan effectively, resources to help guide your decisions, and answers to frequently asked questions throughout the process. Take advantage of Advising Week events on campus or virtually as you plan your schedule and register for courses. Reach out to the Student Services offices or Virtual Advisors with any questions you have as you are planning your courses.

Online Course Format

As you are thinking about future online courses through the Extended Learning Institute (ELI) give thought to the course format and pacing of online courses.

As you prepare for advising week and registration, think about the course format that will work best for you at this time.

  • Format
  • Technology
  • Time Required

Although online learning and on-campus courses cover the same content, the format is different. ELI courses are flexible, with stated deadlines, meaning, you can work on your course at any point throughout the week, but will need to meet weekly or even mid-weekly due dates. ELI requires proctored/supervised exams to be completed within the stated course deadlines. Some courses may also be accelerated with the instructor’s permission.

Technology provides content and interaction. ELI courses use Blackboard as the course management system to communicate and facilitate class discussions. Students are required to use their VCCS student email account to communicate with the instructor.

Online learning courses usually require at least as much time as you would spend taking a campus-based course. You should plan to study at least 2-3 hours a week for each credit. In other words, for a 16-week, three-credit course, you would study 6-9 hours per week. For 12, 10, 8 or 6-week courses, more time would need to be scheduled to complete your requirements. When you compare this time with what you spend in class and studying outside of class, it is about the same.

Here is a chart that illustrates the general amount of time per week you should expect to study per credit hour based on the course length. For example, if you enroll in an 8-week, 3-credit class, you can expect to spend 12-18 hours per week studying for this class. In general, the shorter the class length (8-, 12-, 10-, or 16-week), the more hours of study time you can expect to spend per week per credit.

(Click on chart to enlarge picture)

We encourage you to participate in an ELI Orientation to help as you are getting started in your first online course. You can view short videos from Blackboard to review how to submit an assignment, post on discussion board, check grades, etc.

For more information about getting started at ELI, please email elisuccess@nvcc.edu or call 703.764.5076. Have a question, but not sure who to ask? Start with a Success Coach!

Advising week is almost here!

Advising Week is almost here!

Advising Week is held every fall and spring at NOVA to help students prepare for their next semester and create an academic plan that works for them! Advising Week for spring 2018 will be held Monday, November 6 – November 9. Priority registration for continuing students begins Monday, November 6. Registration for all NOVA students begins on Monday, November 13. College Student Having Meeting With Tutor To Discuss Work

Follow this ELI Student Blog next week as we help you prepare to get the most out of Advising Week.

Things to watch for to help you prepare for Advising Week:

  • Creating a schedule that works for you.
  • Connecting with your advisor.
  • Communicating effectively with your advisor.
  • Taking time for yourself.

Questions to ask yourself as you prepare for Advising Week:

  • What is one change I can make to my schedule to be more successful next term/semester?
  • When would be a good time for me to connect with my advisor?
  • What questions do I have for my advisor?
  • What is one thing I can do this week to help manage stress?

Pay attention to the tuition deadline so you are not dropped for non-payment. Contact Financial Aid with any questions.

This Advising Week Series will focus on academic planning, connecting with your advisor, and preparing for your upcoming terms. Throughout Advising Week the ELI Student Blog will provide you with tools to plan effectively, resources to help guide your decisions, and answers to frequently asked questions throughout the process. Take advantage of Advising Week events on campus or virtually as you plan your schedule and register for courses. Reach out to the Student Services offices or Virtual Advisors with any questions you have as you are planning your courses.

Free Career Planning Tool for NOVA Students

Did you know all NOVA students, staff, and faculty have free access to FOCUS 2, an online, interactive, self-guided career and education planning system that can help you:

  • Select a program/major based on your interests and aspirations
  • Discover occupations matching your personal preferences and attributes
  • Map out your career plans, present and future
  • Make informed career decisions

View a Getting Started with FOCUS 2 handout.

Follow the steps below to begin using FOCUS 2.

  1. Visit NOVA’s Career Services website
  2. Select FOCUS 2
  3. Click FOCUS 2 button
  4. Click REGISTER button
  5. Enter “NOVA” for the access code
  6. Enter your NOVA student e-mail address in the e-mail box
  7. Provide requested information
  8. Check box to acknowledge terms and conditions of system
  9. Click CONTINUE button

Contact Christy Jensen (chjensen@nvcc.edu) if you have any problems accessing the system.