Tag Archives: Academics

Prepare for Summer Registration

Thinking about an online class for Summer 2017? Summer Registration opens for all students on Tuesday, March 28. The online catalog is available in NOVAConnect now, however, you will not be able to load courses to your cart or complete enrollment until Tuesday. Search the online catalog to see what options you have for online courses.

ELI offers courses that begin on May 16, 22, and June 5.

old wooden pier on the sea in sunset

Review & Understand your NOVAConnect Account

Plan ahead – Have any holds? Need to update your contact information? Request a final transcript or view your final grades? Run your advising report before working with your advisor? Log into your Student Center account (in NOVAConnect) for more information.

Be cleared of any prerequisites (if needed)

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 another regionally accredited institution, you will need to work with an advisor before being permitted to enroll in courses at NOVA. Any questions? More information at the Visiting and Transient Student webpage or reach out to a Virtual Advisor at AcademicAdvising@nvcc.edu.

Get Ready to Start your courses

Each course has a course site in Blackboard. Students are given access to the course specific link on the first day the course is scheduled to begin. Once you have access to your course in Blackboard, make sure to thoroughly review the course syllabus and course calendar (Overview of Assignments) to map out a plan for the course. Summer courses run at an accelerated pace, so make sure you plan ahead and stay on track.

Understand online learning through ELI

Participate in the ELI Orientation webinar to get off to a strong start. This one hour live online instructor session will focus on getting started in your courses, navigating your Blackboard course site, and identifying tips for success and student support services. The ELI Orientation is highly recommended for students who are new to online learning. Live session dates will be posted soon.

Make sure you know your course start date and critical enrollment dates! Don’t miss your first assignment due date!

Take the Smarter Measure assessment to see how your personal learning styles will work with online courses.

Establish a Routine! All online courses, regardless of session length, are based on the full 16-week course material, so summer courses (12, 8, and 4 week classes) will move at an accelerated pace. Review this blog post for more information about pacing in online courses.

If you need assistance with your course selection, ELI Counselors can be reached at, elicounselors@nvcc.edu.

What does a snow day mean for your ELI courses?

Staying informed will allow you to plan accordingly and stay safe! NOVA makes it easy for you to stay up-to-date in the event of an emergency closing or delay. snow dayIf the College is closed or delayed due to an emergency or inclement weather, a text alert will be sent to cell phones registered on NOVA Alert, a notice will be posted on the home page of the College’s website, and a message will appear on our cable television station as well as several local radio and television stations. The College also uses several media sources to announce delays and closings. The Emergency Preparedness website provides more information as you are planning ahead.

What does this mean for your ELI class?

All in-person class sessions, and in-person labs will be canceled or delayed based on NOVA’s announcements. If you are planning to take an exam at the campus testing center, you will want to note that any closings or delays will affect campus testing center hours. Campus closing and delays will affect all campus offices, tutoring centers, and libraries.

Keep in mind, even when the college is closed, you are still expected to log into Blackboard to access your ELI courses.  A snow day is the perfect time to work on assignments and get ahead. If you have a live, virtual session scheduled, that meeting may still take place. Be sure to check your student email and blackboard announcement section to find out if the closing or delay will affect your ELI course or if due dates have been changed due to the weather.

If you have not already, sign up for NOVA Alert today!

This Week at ELI

Is today the first day of your ELI course? Review the Critical Enrollment Dates blog post to make sure you get off to a great start. Join us for today’s ELI Orientation webinar or request a recording!

All courses beginning today are 8-week courses. Make sure you are comfortable with the pace of the course from day 1. An ELI Student Blogger has shared her experiences preparing for an 8-week course to help you!

Don’t forget to sign-up for NOVA Alert.  NOVA Alert is a free alert system that allows NOVA to contact you during an emergency by sending messages to your cell phone and email.

Democracy Builders Essay Contest. Democracy depends on an informed citizenry actively participating in decisions, and that civil discourse is an essential part of the process. Up to five essays will be selected for prizes of $100 each. Essay due Friday, March 17!

Join ELI’s Virtual Student Union. ELI’s VSU has a new look! Are you taking online classes and looking to connect with other students outside of a classroom setting? Check out our Virtual Student Union or VSU. Join now!

E-lead Series. ELI Student Life has created a virtual co-curricular opportunity to develop leadership skills for students! This program is free and does not offer academic credit, however, students who participate will receive a certificate of completion. This is also a great resume builder! Registration:   Leadership Pilot Program Registration Form.

Financial Avenue – Financial Literacy Contest – Twenty $100 NOVA bookstore gift cards towards educational costs at NOVA will be given-away throughout the 2016‐2017 academic year to randomly selected students ELI who successfully complete Financial Avenue web‐based financial literacy modules! For more information visit Financial Aid’s Financial Literacy Blog. Official contest rules and registration to participate can be found here.

Preparing for Exams

As you are preparing for final exams in your online courses, the ELI Student Success Coaches have complied a list of resources to help you as you prepare. If you have questions or would benefit from additional strategies, reach out to an ELI Success Coach today by calling 703.323.3347 or elisuccess@nvcc.edu. From test taking strategies to time management, they are here to answer your questions and help you access resources that will empower you to navigate the semester and pave your way to a successful academic journey.

Does your heart start pounding when a test is placed in front of you? Do you know the material but your mind goes blank? These are just a few of the common challenges students face when taking a test. To address these common fears, ELI offers a wide variety of resources that will empower you and promote your testing success.

Take a moment now and explore the following resources to promote your way to an ‘A’.Computer screenIf you learn best hearing or speaking (auditory learner), you will welcome the workshops offered through Student Lingo. These free workshops are presented online by a facilitator in an engaging format. Each workshop is about 30 minutes use the link above to access the following workshops:

If you prefer to read (visual learner) the short ELife Blog posts, referenced below are just for you! These ELife Blog posts referenced below, offer timely tips to help you organize and prepare for your next test:

If you prefer to be actively involved and busy as you learn (kinesthetic learner) you may enjoy the following study methods:

  • Quizlet or Study Stack Apps: Take your practice tests and review your flash cards on the go using these apps which will enable you to create flash cards along with practice tests and quizzes.
  • If you prefer, consider the tried and true flash cards made from index cards. This allows kinesthetic learners to flip around the cards, write notes and review at any location, walking, standing or sitting (as with an app). Just flip the cards while you are studying and walk around as you review. Write cues on the cards to help you remember. You can even be creative and develop a game using your flashcards.

If memory/recall is a challenge when studying for your tests, consider exploring the ELife Blogs highlighted below which are focused on strategies to trigger memory:

Stress and anxiety is another common challenge many students experience when testing. To combat your stress, click here to view a short video on stress, facilitated by ELI’s PED instructor, Dr. Gamal Aboshadi. It will provide a better understanding of stress and empower you with valuable techniques to promote relaxation as you study and prepare to go to the testing center.

No matter what your learning style, as you plan for success on your next test, be sure to take time to put these resources into action!

Written by Adrienne, ELI Student Success Coach

Graduation Application Deadline!

Are YOU planning to graduate in May? The deadline to apply is March 1st! Graduation_16Not sure where to start?

View the recording of Crossing the Finish Line: NOVA Graduation Preparation Program (video opens in a separate window)!

This 17-minute video to obtain information on what you need to graduate from NOVA and plan for transfer or prepare for employment.

You will learn how to:

  • Verify the remaining requirements of your program
  • Apply for graduation and attend commencement
  • Financially prepare for your last semester at NOVA and your new institution. 

Learn about the information you will need to graduate from NOVA and plan for transfer or prepare for employment. Questions? Visit the NOVA Graduation Website or contact an ELI Counselor at ELICounselors@nvcc.edu!

Transfer Planning Webinars

Thinking about transferring after NOVA and not sure where to start? Want to make sure you have options available to you if you decide to transfer? Start planning now! Join us for Transfer Planning Webinars!

Transfer Planning Webinar:

Join ELI’s Transfer Counselor on Friday, February 17th, 12:00pm-1:00pm

It’s never too early to begin your planning to transfer another institution. This one-hour webinar will discuss the basics of transfer planning; information about Guaranteed Admission Agreements, Articulation Agreements, and Transfer Guides; and a provide web tour of NOVA’s transfer website.Join us live or request a recording.

Transfer Q&A Webinar:

Join in on this virtual open forum to chat and get your questions answered by a NOVA transfer counselor on Friday, February 24th, 12:00pm – 1:00pm. Join us live!

Everyone is welcome to join us!

This week at ELI

Is today the first day of your ELI course? Review the Critical Enrollment Dates blog post to make sure you get off to a great start. Join us for today’s ELI Orientation webinar or request a recording!

Transfer Planning Webinar: Join ELI’s Transfer Counselor on Friday, February 17th, 12:00pm-1:00pm

It’s never too early to begin your planning to transfer another institution. This one-hour webinar will discuss the basics of transfer planning; information about Guaranteed Admission Agreements, Articulation Agreements, and Transfer Guides; and a provide web tour of NOVA’s transfer website. Join us live or request a recording.

Don’t forget to sign-up for NOVA Alert.  NOVA Alert is a free alert system that allows NOVA to contact you during an emergency by sending messages to your cell phone and email. https://alert.nvcc.edu

Democracy Builders Essay Contest. Democracy depends on an informed citizenry actively participating in decisions, and that civil discourse is an essential part of the process. Essays may address specific current critical and/or controversial topics, at local, regional, state, or national levels.  Be creative and dream big.  The essays will be judged by a NOVA faculty panel and are due by March 17, 2017. The contest is sponsored by professors Reva Savkar and Robert Loser. Up to five essays will be selected for prizes of $100 each. For more information please visit https://blogs.nvcc.edu/democracybuilders/

Have you checked out NOVA’s new job and internship database powered by College Central Network?  There are over 1000 local employers registered and they are regularly posting opportunities to NOVA students and alumni.  You will also find over 200 active career opportunities and details regarding NOVA career events.  Log in with your NOVA ID number (found on your NOVA ID card) and VCCS email address.  http://www.collegecentral.com/nova.

Join ELI’s Virtual Student Union. ELI’s VSU has a new look! Are you taking online classes and looking to connect with other students outside of a classroom setting? Check out our Virtual Student Union or VSU. This is an engagement hub where ELI students have access to create a profile, join discussion forums and connect with other students. In celebration of our new site launch, students will be eligible for raffle prizes once they create an account and interact on the site. Drawings will be done weekly and monthly through the fall semester. Join now!

E-lead Series. ELI Student Life has created a virtual co-curricular opportunity to develop leadership skills for students! The overall goal is to foster a sense of community among students taking online courses, to develop more self-awareness of leadership strengths and skills, and to help you maximize your talents as they relate to academic and professional goals. This program is free and does not offer academic credit, however, students who participate will receive a certificate of completion. This is also a great resume builder! Dates: Feb 20th – March 19th Registration:   Leadership Pilot Program Registration Form. Please fill out no later than Feb. 17th at 5pm.  

Financial Avenue – Financial Literacy Contest – Twenty $100 NOVA bookstore gift cards towards educational costs at NOVA will be given-away throughout the 2016‐2017 academic year to randomly selected students ELI who successfully complete Financial Avenue web‐based financial literacy modules! For more information visit Financial Aid’s Financial Literacy Blog. Official contest rules and registration to participate can be found here.

MTT Units – Technology Based Developmental Math

Are you enrolled in a MTT course through ELI? We want to make sure you have all the information to start strong!math

What is MTT ?

MTT refers to the Motivating Academic Success Through Effective Redesign (MASTER) math courses that make up NOVA’s developmental math program. These courses offer personalized instruction allowing students to skip sections of material in which they can demonstrate competency and work toward mastery of the remaining material. Which MTT course a student takes depends upon the number of units needed. The Virginia Placement Test (VPT) for mathematics is aligned with the MTT units. View the MASTER Math: Progression chart to determine what units are required to be prepared for specific math courses at NOVA. The most units a student can cover in an MTT course at one time is four (MTT 4). Some students may need to complete more than one MTT course to be prepared for the math course required for their degree.

To be successful in MTT, you will need to spend several hours working on the course activities.

Textbooks and Course Materials:

MTT courses use MyMathLab which is an online textbook-based diagnostic evaluation and tutorial program designed specifically for this course. It includes an electronic copy of the class textbook, a variety of multimedia instructional resources, unlimited practice exercises, self-paced learning modules, online testing, and an individualized study plan. MyMathLab is supported and maintained by the publisher’s web server and the required plug-ins for this tool are standard.  MyMathLab is delivered inside a web-based course delivery system called MyLabsPlus. You must have an access code to MyLabsPlus, which can be purchased through the online bookstore.

The Online Math Lab is a substitute for the on-campus Math Computer Lab requirements and can be accessed through the Online Math Lab link in the menu of your Blackboard course site. The Online Math Lab is used by MTT students to ask general questions regarding course content and concepts.

Tests and Quizzes:

There are pre and post tests for each unit. Unit pre and post-tests must be proctored. Module quizzes are not proctored and will be taken at home. You cannot move forward, or complete a unit without completing the pre and post test for that unit. If you are out of the area, you will need to secure an approved proctor to supervise your exams. If you are in the area, you can take your proctored exams at any NOVA campus testing center.

Resources:

Success Coaches – Anxious about taking a math course? Contact your Success Coach at elisuccess@nvcc.edu or 703.764.5076 for tips for success and resources to help you have a successful semester. The Student Success Coaches created a recording for you to help you Understand your MTT course. You can review the recording online.

Smarthinking – Smarthinking is a free online tutoring service available to ELI students. Smarthinking provides tutoring in a variety of subjects, many of which are available 24/7.

Student Lingo – Engaging on-demand, on-line workshops 24/7 on a variety of subjects – including math-related topics for example:  How to Succeed in Math, which provides specific strategies on how to succeed in an online math course and How to Overcome Math Anxiety, which helps students understand and assess their own level of math anxiety while providing ways to cope with fear and eliminate stress.

Khan Academy – This free resource offers a new way to work on some of the skills that you may be falling behind on. Students can use Khan’s large library resource database and partake in interactive assessments, challenges and even some helpful videos on a variety of topics.

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.

  • 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!

Hiding a Course on the My Blackboard Courses Module

Hiding a Course on the My Blackboard Courses Module

Usually courses will disappear from your Blackboard course site once the course has ended and is closed, however, every so often, one may stick around. You can hide courses from previous semesters in the My Blackboard Course Module. This does not remove the course from Blackboard, but hides it from view so that you only see the current semester courses when you first login to Blackboard.

 Step 1: Log in to your Blackboard Dashboard and click the gear icon in the top right of the My Courses module.  The icon will not appear until you hover your mouse in that area.bb1

Step 2: Locate the row for the course or courses you would like to hide and clear the check box in the Course Name column.

Step 3:  Be sure all check marks are cleared in that course’s row.bb2

 

 Step 4: Click the Submit button to complete this action.bb3

 

 

If you have any questions, the 24/7 ELI IT Helpdesk is available at 703.764.5051.