Etudes Basics: Self-Paced Tutorial
By Dr. Gayle L. Fornataro, Virtual Valley Student Success Coordinator
1. What is Etudes?
2. Setting Your Computer to Run Etudes
2A. Checking Computer and Internet Requirements
2B. Using a Supported Web Browser
2C. Setting Browser Cache
2E. Enabling Browser Cookies
2F. Disabling Pop-Up Blockers
3. Logging on to Your Class Website
4. Getting Help
5. Keys to Success
- Check the Etudes System Requirements and make the necessary adjustments to your computer and Internet web browser before you login and use the Etudes Course Management System.
- Read FAQ and help files, either on the Etudes homepage or provided by your instructor, before you login or use the Etudes Web site for the first time.
- Use a "three before me," policy with your instructor, checking at least three sources of information (your class Web site, the Etudes Gateway help files, or the "Student Resources Page" of the Virtual Valley Web site, for example) before contacting your instructor (or the Help Desk for help. This saves you time, and makes you a more independent, confident user of the Internet.
- If you cannot solve your problem on your own, do not hesitate to contact your instructor, or the ETUDES helpdesk immediately. Understand that it can take a day or more to receive an answer, so the sooner you ask, the sooner you will get your answer.
- Understand that online classes are "Learner Centered," and be an "Active Learner."
- Anticipate that you will experience technical difficulties at some point during the semester, and come up with a backup plan for how you will access your class website in the event that you cannot do so from your main computer. Technical difficulties are not an excuse to not submit an assignment on time. You will be expected to submit all your work by the posted deadline, no matter what computer problems you may experience.
- Read the other self-paced tutorial called Online Learning Success, to learn what to expect from online classes, how to manage your time in the self-paced enviroment of the online classroom, and other valuable information that will help you make the most of your online learning experience and achieve online learning success.
Students who are most successful in online courses are those who are self-motivated, self-disciplined (able to make and stick to a study schedule), and who have good technology skills.
Before taking signing up for a class, check out our Online Readiness Quiz
Once you are in an online class we recommend that you take two online tutorials, available on the Virtual Valley Student Resources webpage, or by clicking on the links below:
Students taking online classes are more likely to be successful if they possess the following technology skills before starting their course:
- Know how to use a mouse and keyboard to select and start programs, and to enter information.
- Know how to connect to the Internet and use web browser software to locate information on the Internet.
- Know how to create and manage folders on a computer, including finding, uploading, downloading, and saving individual files.
- Know how to send email attachments
- Know how to download and install "plug-in" software such as media viewers, java, etc.
- Know how to manage security settings on your computer through the Internet browser software and firewall.
- Know how to use word processing software such as Microsoft Word to create, edit, and print text documents.
- Know how to "cut and paste" and "copy and paste" within documents.
- Know how to send and receive messages using e-mail.
If you need help developing any of these skills prior to taking an online class, study the following two tutorials, available on the Student Resources page of the virtual valley website:
The short answer is no. Online and hybrid courses teach the same material as our on-campus courses.
Online classes may even require more weekly work, but they are more convenient.
Students who have poor technology skills or who need the discipline of regularly scheduled class meetings in order to stay on task are likely to feel that online courses are more difficult than classroom-based courses.
Students who have good technology skills, are self-disciplined, regularly make time to study and complete assignments, and have good reading and writing skills are likely to feel that online courses are similarly challenging to on-campus classes.
Yes. The exact same content is taught in online as in a traditional course that meets on campus.
All online and hybrid courses are developed by LAVC faculty.
These courses are reviewed by the department chair and an instructional designer.
For course components that are online, you do not normally have to be online at a certain time. Instead, you can study when it is convenient for you, as long as you complete and submit required assignments and tests by due dates indicated in the syllabus.
Some instructors may require small group or other discussions to take place at a schedules time, which is often negotiable. Contact your instructor for any specific time requirements.
If you are taking an online class or a hybrid, you don't need to go out and buy a computer. HOWEVER you do need frequent access to a reliable computer.
LAVC does have a computer lab in BJ 103. For lab hours see the following link: Help Desk/Computer Lab Information.
For more information about the lab, contact Ken Freeman at (818) 947-2568.
No. LAVC offers its online classes through the Etudes course management system, which is available over the Internet. All you need is a good computer with a reliable Internet connection.
However, some instructors may require purchase of special programs, such as Microsoft Word, or other discipline-specific software. Check with your instructor prior to the beginning of the class for any additional software requirements.
Yes, you need an active email account. Those are available for free from Gmail, Yahoo, etc.Return to Top
Regular access to a good computer
Reliable Internet access. While dial-up modems will work, they are very slow, so cable or digital Internet connections are recommended.
Note: If AOL is your Internet service, you will not be able to use your AOL browser, but will need to download another browser.
- For more information about computer, Internet, and browser requirements, see the System Requirements.
A good word processing program, such as Microsoft Word (some professors require this program).
Check with your instructor to see if there are any additional equipment requirements prior to taking clas