Tag Archives: faculty

Ten Quick Steps to Email Your Instructor

Need to email your instructor and not sure where to start? These ten easy to follow steps will help you get that email written and the send button hit in no time!4805341351. Use your NOVA student email account to send your email. All correspondence relating to your courses should come from and go to your NOVA email address. Email messages originating from other email addresses may go directly to your instructors SPAM folder and go unnoticed.

2. Make your subject line meaningful. Your instructor likely teaches multiple courses and may even teach on other campuses. Include the course and section number along with a quick description of why you are writing your instructor.
An example might look like this:
Subject: PSY 200-E05W, Question about grade calculations

3. Briefly and politely state the reason you are writing. Be sure to include all of the relevant information pertaining to your question and leave out anything that does not relate directly to the situation.

4. If you are writing your instructor because you have a problem, include a proposed solution in your email. The instructor may or may not agree with your suggestion. Regardless, it does demonstrate to your instructor you are taking the initiative to actively work towards resolving the situation.

5. Sign your email with your complete first and last name along with your student ID number.

6. Read through your email to check for spelling and punctuation errors. Make sure all of your sentences are complete and do not contain any abbreviations or other modified text that is used in text messaging.

7. If your email is lengthy, have a second set of eyes proofread your email for clarity. This will be an opportunity to make sure you have clearly articulated what it is you wanted to say.

8. Send your email.

9. Allow adequate time for a response from your instructor. Many ELI instructors also teach campus based courses so they are not always sitting at their computer in their office. Often you will find information in the syllabus relating to how soon you should expect a response from your instructor.

10. Once you have received a response from your instructor, acknowledge it. A simple “Thank you” may be all that is needed. If your instructor asks you questions in their response to your email, be sure to answer all of them thoroughly.

This post was adapted from www.wikihow.com/Email-a-professor by the ELI Success Coaches to help you develop skills to effectively communicate through email to your instructor for the February focus on communication. ELI Success Coaches can be reached at elisuccess@nvcc.edu or 703.764.5076.

Written by Laura, ELI Success Coach

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 Counselors can be reached at ELICounselors@nvcc.edu.

Prepare for Summer Registration

Thinking about an online class for Summer 2016? Summer Registration opens for all students on March 29. The online catalog is available in NOVAConnect now – search the online catalog to see what options you have for online courses.

ELI offers courses that begin on May 30, June 13 and June 27! Enroll today!

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.  You can visit the Visiting and Transient Student webpage for more information. Any questions? 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 live 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. Register or Request a Recording Today!

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, 6 and 4 week classes) will move at an accelerated pace.

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

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!

If you do not have an assigned advisor, click here for more information on how to have a Faculty Advisor assigned.

Plan early for your next semester with your Faculty Advisor and have your spring 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, and the holidays are coming up! 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 spring term classes. ELI Counselors can be reached at ELICounselors@nvcc.edu.

Written by ELI Student Success Coach, Laura Tiglao.

Motivational Minute: Reach out to your Instructor

Unlike an on-campus course, students in an online course may complete the entire course without any interaction with their instructor and student must establish a virtual relationship with instructors.  Students may be a bit unsure about how to navigate this new virtual student-instructor relationship and may hesitate to email an instructor when the need arises. Instructors can offer students unparalleled guidance on the course policies, assistance with course content, and course-specific resources.  Here are some things to consider when reaching out to your instructor: things there is a delay in response time, and some students find verbal communication much easier.

Establish communication early. Reach out to your instructor at the start of the course and introduce yourself. You can locate your instructor’s contact information in your course Blackboard and in NOVA’s online faculty directory here.

Be thorough in your  communications. Because there can be a delay in response time when emailing and calling instructors (instructors have up to 2 business to respond to students), the process of getting assistance can be prolonged by asking multiple questions multiple times. To avoid this, be sure to include all the information you need in your initial contact with the instructor and ask your questions clearly and concisely.

Keep records of your interaction. Using written forms of communication with your professor can serve as a great reference to return to for future use. It’s always good to establish the habit of having a hard copy of all email communications in school and in your professional life.

Facilitate respectful communication with your instructor. Try to facilitate a dialogue of mutual respect and avoid using abrasive, accusatory, or otherwise aggressive language in all communications with instructors. Review tips on emailing your instructor for more tips!

Distance learning doesn’t have to be marked by a distance between professors and students. Reach out to your instructors, they’re here for you! Namaste.

Jennifer, ELI Success Coach

ELI Success Coach Team 703-764-5076 and elisuccess@nvcc.edu.

Black History Month

black_histroy_monthWe can never fully understand what it is like to be a slave, but there are stories that can speak to us from the past. During Black History Month, we are encouraged to try to learn more about the experience. Here are a few resources about slavery that might make the indescribable horrors come alive in your mind.

The Library of Congress has a collection entitled Voices From the Days of Slavery. These are interviews with former slaves about their experiences.

The History Channel has a fascinating site called Slavery in America.

Here is the full text of the Autobiography of Venture Smith, a former slave who published his story in 1798. It is one of the earliest published slave narratives.

This blog was written by Assistant Professor of English, Bridget Pool. Professor Pool teaches ENG 254 – Survey of
African American Literature II. She can be reached by email at bpool@nvcc.edu.

National Distance Learning Week

To mark National Distance Learning Week this week, we wanted to take the opportunity to share with you 10 things you might not know about ELI.NDLW1.    23,000 NOVA students taken online courses through ELI each year.

2.    ELI offers more than 500 different online courses, so whatever field you’re in and whatever degree requirement you’re working to fill, you can probably find it at ELI!

3.    ELI courses and ELI faculty win national awards every year.

4.    You are not alone when you take an ELI course – you will interact with your professor and with your classmates through discussions, group assignments, and more.

5.    ELI staff provide lots of services to support you in your online courses, too, including 24/7 free online tutoring, an online librarian, 24/7 technical support, student success coaches, and much more.

6.    ELI offers monthly start dates for most of our courses, so just about any time you want to get started with us, we have a new session starting soon!

7.    You can earn more than 40 complete associate’s degrees and certificates entirely through ELI. Check out the list here: http://eli.nvcc.edu/degrees.htm

8.    Not sure whether an online course is right for you? You can take the Smartermeasure assessment to find out!

9.    ELI offers courses in 16-week, 12-week, and 8-week lengths so you can choose the schedule and course length that best fits your needs.

10.    Most ELI students take classes on campus as well as ELI classes; combining the two can be the perfect way to get to your degree as quickly as possible.

Happy Distance Learning Week to all our ELI Students. If you have any questions, contact the ELI Student Services Team at 703-323-3347 or connect with us on social media. We are more than happy to answer your questions, as well as refer you to useful resources and services that will support your online learning experience.

Leadership Common Experience: Week 3

The Importance of Faculty Rapport

Check out the below entry from one of our ELI instructors on his thoughts about the importance of building rapport with faculty.

dog_pun_2Just before I started teaching my first online course I was worried about how well I’d be able to reach my students, both as a teacher and as a human being. Would Pun Dog be able to get the kind of help he needed in as clear a way as would happen were his instructor guiding him through his struggles with math in-person? And, more, could the teacher put him at ease by giving him a friendly tone through potentially cold screens full of text, unaccompanied by a friendly smile? Taken together, I worried that I couldn’t develop the sort of rapport I’d enjoyed with students I taught in the classroom.

As an online student you may have the same concerns, so I’m thrilled to say that all of my fears turned out to be unfounded. In fact, after that first course I went to a baseball game with one former student and met another for coffee when I was visiting NYC. Students shared photos of their children, we wrote back and forth about shared interests, etc.

All of this made for a fun class, but I’m certain it also lead to greater student success; when everyone has a sense of connection, even in a virtual classroom, there tends to be more of a sense of support, of presence, of caring, and so on, all of which serve to put everyone at ease and trust that their instructor is here to make you succeed. So having a strong student/teacher rapport is possible in an online environment, and also very beneficial.

Now, a lot of this is on the instructor, but I have found that my students, too, help create a harmonious relationship between them and myself. If you are proactive in creating a bond with your instructor, you just may find a better experience in your classes. Here are some ways you might try:

  • If you are asked to respond to your peers in discussion forums, go beyond the minimum reply and really push yourself to be expressive and helpful… this always opens my eyes and warms me towards the student. Similarly consider responding to those who comment on your work, including your instructor. Having a true back-and-forth doesn’t just have to happen in person.
  • Ask questions, be it in the question forum or via email. We want to know when you need help and, not being able to read body language/facial expressions, being able to do so can be difficult online. And asking us also makes us feel connected to you.
  • Use your sense of humor (when appropriate, of course), share some of your outside interests, etc.; it is possible to have fun and express ourselves online, and it’s a great way to get your peers and instructor to feel they have a genuine connection with you.
  • If this course is in an area that you are considering pursuing as a career, ask your instructor for her/his insider knowledge, tips, resources, and so on. Teachers are nothing if not passionate about their subjects and desirous of helping students develop into the professionals they want to become.

So there you have it… rapport with your online instructor is a vital component of a good experience, and you have the power to help bring it about. Trust me, it makes these classes so much more rewarding.

-Will Hatheway

ELI Adjunct Instructor of English

 

What questions do you have about creating relationships with your ELI instructors?