Resources for Online Students


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  • As an instructor, I have found myself being frustrated that my students don’t take advantage of the resources available to them. At these moments, I remind myself that apathy is probably not the reason, or at least the only reason, most students fail to use resources. We cannot assume that our students know how to find resources, know how to evaluate them, or know how to use them. Even now as a teacher, I am constantly finding that there are resources on things I didn’t even imagine I would need help with. I am struggling to evaluate the usefulness of tools that use a wide variety of technology, and sometimes I can’t figure out how to use tools. Thankfully, I am comfortable asking for help if I need it, but I know that this is not true for my students. They may not feel comfortable asking for help, or they may not even know how to ask for the resources they need. Just because we make a tool or resource available doesn’t mean a student will necessarily use it, but our responsibility as instructors is to create a rich environment for learning, and making online tools and resources available for students is an integral part of creating a rich online learning environment. We could spend an infinite amount of time creating tools for students, but many resources already exist for us to use.
  • Some resources are automatically available in course shells. One such resource is tutoring at CWI. By clicking on the “Tutoring” button, students will be able to access information about the tutoring services available. Right now, most services are offered face to face at all of the three main CWI campuses, but Tutoring Services is working to offer students services online. Currently, students can do writing consultations by email, and soon, Tutoring Services is hoping to offer online math tutoring.
  • By clicking on the CWI Student Resources button, students are also linked with information on a variety of resources that are available to CWI students. These resources include (1) Information Technology,(2) Tutoring & Study Labs, (3) CWI Library, (4) One-Stop Contacts, (5) ADA Statement, (6) CWI Bookstore, (7) Blackboard User Guide, (8) Emergency Procedures.
  • It is also a good idea, especially in an online class, add resources from which you believe your students will benefit. In this class, a number of resources were added that might be especially beneficial to you. These resources primarily deal with software you may need to download in order to succeed in this class. These resources are housed under the “CWI Student Resources” button to avoid to encourage students to always go to one place if resources are needed. The resources that come loaded in each course shell were put in their own folder to distinguish them from course specific resources. A list of what resources are in each folder is given to help students to ease navigations.
  • Some resources are applicable regardless of discipline. For courses that incorporate any sort of writing, The Purdue Online Writing Lab, known as the Purdue OWL, is a very robust resource. It has information and handouts on a wide variety of writing issues. The OWL is geared to writers across the disciplines. Perhaps the most popular feature of the OWL is its information about documentation and documentation styles, including APA and MLA. Citation Builder from the University Libraries of the University of North Carolina allows students to input information about the sources they are wishing to document and receive advice on how to cite those sources. For courses requiring research, it is useful to guide students in how to do research online. All residents of the state of Idaho have access to the Libraries Linking Idaho (lili) databases, which include databases like ProQuest Central. Students can also use Google Scholar, which is much more appropriate than using regular google for academic research. Many students can also benefit from information to help them improve their study skills. Online Study Skills Resources from University of Texas, San Antonio give an extensive listing of the various study skills resources available online.
  • Often, talking to our fellow instructors is the best way to find out about useful resources, but you can also go about finding resources in less traditional ways.Using google to search for resources can often work quite well. Many colleges and universities offer level appropriate resources. Tutoring centers often post handouts. One way to find resources is through the publishers of the textbooks we use. Bedford St. Martin’s, Cengage, McGraw-Hill, and Pearson publish the majority of textbooks used in higher education. They provide resources that students have to pay for and some for free. Often the free resources offerred by these companies are web-based. You can visit the publisher websites, or you can contact your departments book representatives. Contact your departmental administrative assistant to get contact information for book representatives. Another way to find resources is to have your students find them and post them on Blackboard in a place where other students can view the information. Students could post resources as they find them, or they can be given the assignment of finding, explaining, and evaluating a resource, which would offer all students more resources as well as have students practice locating and evaluating resources. Such posting can be ungraded or graded postings on a wiki or discussion board.
  • Resources for Online Students

    1. 1. college of western idaho<br />resources<br />
    2. 2. The importance of making resources available to online students<br /><ul><li>Students may not know how to find resources
    3. 3. Students may not know how to evaluate a resource’s value
    4. 4. Students may not understand how to use resources
    5. 5. Students may not feel comfortable asking for help</li></li></ul><li>CWI resources through Blackboard<br /><ul><li>Students can access CWI tutoring resources. </li></li></ul><li>CWI resources through Blackboard<br /><ul><li>Students can learn about the variety of resources available to them as CWI students. </li></li></ul><li>Adding resources<br /><ul><li>Add resources that will be helpful for your students. </li></li></ul><li>General resources<br />
    6. 6. Places to find resources<br />Search online<br /><ul><li>Many universities and colleges offer level appropriate resources</li></ul>Textbook publishers<br /><ul><li>Bedford St. Martin’s</li></ul><br /><ul><li>Cengage</li></ul><br /><ul><li>McGraw-Hill</li></ul><br /><ul><li>Pearson </li></ul>Student found resources<br /><ul><li>Wiki
    7. 7. Discussion Board</li>