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Old Dominion University: Distance Learning: Online Student Orientation



Distance Learning > Student Orientation
Frequently Asked Questions
  1. When I print a page, text at the right hand margin is missing.
  2. How do I increase my screen size and adjust the number of colors displayed?
  3. How do I go back to the previous page if I cannot see the navigation bars?
  4. When I try to access a website, a message appears saying the page cannot be displayed.
  5. How do I get to Blackboard in order to access the course and to send my assignments?
  6. How do I login to Blackboard?
  7. How do I find my course once I am logged in to Blackboard?
  8. What are the technical recommendations for using Blackboard?
  9. What is a PDF file and how do I use it?
  10. How do I go about downloading the Adobe Acrobat Reader?
  11. How is studying online different from traditional studying?
  12. Can I start a course at any time?
  13. Are there restrictions on when and where I can work on my course?
  14. Do I need advanced computer skills to take an online course?
  15. How do I know if my computer meets the minimum requirements to take an online course?
  16. Are online courses considered "real" college courses?
  17. Will I be able to interact with my professor?
  18. Will I be able to interact with the other students in my class?
  19. How many online courses am I allowed to take at once?
   

   
1. When I print a project page, text at the right hand margin is missing.

If you are having problems printing pages from this course, you may need to reduce the page margins in your browser 'Page Setup'. To do this, follow the steps below:

  • On the File menu, click Page Setup.
  • Under Margins, type 0 in the left box and the right box.
  • Click OK.
  • Choose Print

Your document should now print as it appears on the screen.

 
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2. How do I increase my screen size and adjust the number of colors displayed?

To change your screen size and adjust the number of colors displayed, follow the steps below:

  • From the Start menu, choose Settings and Control panel.
  • Double click on the Display icon.
  • Click on the Settings tab.
  • Under the Screen option move the indicator to reflect 800 by 600 pixels or larger.
  • Under the Color option, choose the maximum number of colors available on your monitor.
  • Click OK to save the new settings and close the control panel.
 
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3. How do I go back to the previous page if I cannot see the navigation bars?

If you cannot see the navigation bars, you may go back a page by clicking on the Back button in the tool bar at the top of the page.

 
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4. When I try to access a website, a message appears saying the page cannot be displayed.

If you are unable to access a web page, you should try again later. The host Web Server may be down. If you are still unable to access the page, you need to contact OCCS Technical Support Center at (757) 683-3192 or 1-877-348-6503 (toll-free).

 
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5. How do I get to Blackboard in order to access the course and to send my assignments?
  • To find Blackboard, type the following URL in your browser address bar.
  • Click on Current Students.
  • Under Academic Resources click on Blackboard.
 
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6. How do I login to Blackboard?

You will need your User Name, which is your ODU email name (ex: Richard Smith = rsmith001)

You will need your password, which is your ODU email password (the one used to open Student Email)

If you have requested a new account or password, please allow up to 24 hours before reporting login problems.

 
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7. How do I find my course once I am logged in to Blackboard?

After logging in to Blackboard, find your course in the list of My Courses or on the Courses tab.

If your course is not listed, you will need to contact OCCS Technical Support Center at
Phone: (757) 683-3192 or 1-877-348-6503 (toll-free)
Email: occshelp@odu.edu

 
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8. What are the technical recommendations for using Blackboard?

In order to use Blackboard, the following technical recommendations should be met:

  • Platform - Windows 95, 98, 2000, NT or ME; MacOS9 or MacOSX
  • Hardware - 64 MB ram, 1 G of free disks pace
  • Software - Microsoft Word, Adobe Acrobat Reader

Note: other software may be required for any particular class needs. See class syllabus or instructor for details about other software needs.

  • Browser - Internet Explorer 5.5 or Netscape 4.78 with Java Script and Cookies ENABLED
  • Modem - 56K minimum
 
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9. What is a PDF file and how do I use it?

PDF, or Portable Document Format, is a file format created by Adobe Company to transfer files over the internet. As you work through your courses, certain documents will be available for download in this format. PDF files can be viewed or printed from any computer with an Adobe Acrobat Reader plug-in.

 
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10. How do I go about downloading the Adobe Acrobat Reader?

You can download a free version of the Adobe Reader plug-in from the Adobe website below:

 
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11. How is studying online different from traditional studying?

The major difference is that you do not have to travel to the campus to attend your class. You can participate in your course from any location where a computer with Internet access is available. You will have the same access to the professors and instructors as those students who attend classes on campus. ODU's online courses include tutorials and courses with projects, video and audio clips, power point lectures, discussions, readings, and illustrations.

 
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12. Can I start a course at any time?

Courses will follow ODU's standard academic calendar with new classes beginning each Fall, Spring, and Summer. Check the registration and admission information for the semester of your choice. For more information, check the enrollement section.

 
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13. Are there restrictions on when and where I can work on my course?

When taking online courses, you do not have to be at a specific location at a specific date or time. Each course will have its own timeline and you will be required to complete the assignments within this time frame, however, you choose where and when you will work on your course.

 
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14. Do I need advanced computer skills to take an online course?

No. If you are familiar with computers using the Internet and comfortable sending and receiving email, you should be able to successfully participate in an online course.

 
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15. How do I know if my computer meets the minimum requirements to take an online course?

You need to check the technical recommendations to make sure you have the hardware and software items you need in order to participate in an online course.

 
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16. Are online courses considered "real" college courses?

Yes. Online courses at ODU are taught by ODU faculty and adjunct professors. Each course meets the same academic requirements as traditional on-campus or TELETECHNET courses.

 
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17. Will I be able to interact with my professor?

You will be able to communicate with your professor through e-mail, real-time chat sessions, and online discussions. Professors will also keep scheduled "virtual office hours" each week. Interaction with your peers and professors is very important to receive quality online education.

 
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18. Will I be able to interact with the other students in my class?

You will be able to communicate with other students through e-mail. You will also be able to post and receive comments on your course's discussion board. This forum allows you to hold conversations with other students and your instructor, without having to be online at the same time.

 
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19. How many online courses am I allowed to take at once?

We suggest you take just one class at a time. If you feel you can handle an increased workload, you may take more. Be sure to check the syllabus for each class in order to become familiar with the course requirements before registering for a class.

 
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