Using ETUDES: Self-Paced Tutorial
Section 1: Getting Started
Lesson 2: What You Need to know before You Logon to Your Class Website
One of the first questions you may have about an online class is how log onto the website. However, there are some preparations you need to make before you (and your computer) are ready to use the ETUDES (Easy-to-Use-Distance-Education-Software) course management system. So, while the temptation is to skip this step and jump right into your new class website, this would be a mistake.
If you do not take the time to set your system up properly and make sure you have the right computer or internet equipment, you will almost certainly experience serious problems using ETUDES course management software.
Improper settings or equipment can prevent you from being able to logon to your class website in the first place. Other problems, however, may not be immediately evident. You may be able to logon and think that everything is working properly, but just when you go to submit your first assignment or forum post, a serious malunction may occur.
Caution! Most problems that crop up as you use the ETUDES-NG Course Mangement System are a result of improper cache or cookie settings. Save yourself time and frustration by taking the time to set your computer to work with ETUDES correctly before you begin your class. Easy to follow, step-by-step, illustrated instructions of everything you need to do will be given in the next section of this lesson.
What kinds of problems will I experience if do not take the time to set my computer to work with ETUDES-NG?
For example, if you do not set your internet browser’s cache or cookies properly, you may not be able to edit and submit assignments correctly. Additionally, if you are not using a supported browser, you may not be able to access the toolbar that enables you to edit your discussion forum posts. Another potential probelm is that when you copy and paste a document from your word processor into an ETUDES forum message or assignment window, you may lose some or all of your formatting, and your carefully crafted message or essay will appear as one long, disorganized block of text. Without the toolbar to make the necessary corrections, your writing will be too difficult for your classmates and instructor to read. These problems can cause you to miss an assignment deadline, and can affect your grade in your class!
Taking some simple steps at the outset can prevent future frustration or aggravating problems.
Bright Idea! Read the help files on a website before you login, register with, and use the site. Knowing the types of problems that can happen before they do will make it easier for you to stay calm, avoid some of them, and solve the technical problems that frequently occur when you work online quickly.
Though it is where you will go to log on to your class website, your ETUDES Portal is more than just a login page. This page is also a rich source of information. The ETUDES login page, especially the "System Requirements" link, is where important, basic information about how to use ETUDES effictively can be found.
Here is what the ETUDES Login portal will look like when you get there:
For Your Information: Most computer problems are not unique, so 99% of the time, a question you have is one that others before you have asked. What’s more, these questions have already been answered.Almost every good website has fairly detailed help files to guide you through registration and other “getting started” procedures, as well as to troubleshoot problems. Instead of being one of the many calls or emails flooding technology help lines, or waiting for your instructor to answer your email, which can take a day or more, you can get the information you need immediately by looking at the site’s FAQ’s.
Click on one of these links to open an FAQ file for using ETUDES-NG:
Frequently Asked Questions (Word Document )
(If you have Microsoft Word on your computer, open this file)
Frequently Asked Questions (PDF)
(If you have Abobe Acrobat on your computer, open this file)
Frequently Asked Questions (text file)
(If you do not have either of those programs, open this text file.)
(Note: Since a text file is largely unformatted, it will be difficult to read; use the Word file or the PDF if you can open either of them.)
Instructors too, often answer questions somewhere on your class website – the course syllabus, the discussion forums, a module, or a link on the menu bar, are good places to look.
Bright Idea! Rather than immediately emailing an instructor for help when you have a problem or a question, see if you can find the information yourself first.
Some instructors have a – “Three, then me” policy. This means that if you have a technical or other question about the class, look at three sources of information to try to find the answer on your own before you send a message to your instructor. That is a good policy to follow, even if your instructor does not specifically require it.
That said, if you do not find the solution to your problem or answer to your question on your own, do not delay sending a message to your instructor, as it will take some time for him or her to get back to you.
Also, if you do need to email your instructor, be sure to include the following information:
- Your name
- The class for which you are enrolled (including the section # or day and time),
- A clear and precise explanation of your problem or question.
Also, any time you post a message on your class website or email your instructor, use proper email ettiquette. You should treat this as a professional communication. Being clear and specific will save time because your instructor will know exactly what you are asking, and it will reflect well on you as a student. For a good lesson on proper email ettiquette, click on the link below:
OWL at Purdue University: Handouts: Email Ettiquette
Now, to find out the crucial steps you need to take to set your computer to run the ETUDES-NG class website software problem-free, move on to the next section of this lesson.
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