To EUSP instructors and campus representatives:
The Teaching Guidelines document can be downloaded by clicking here.
This information is an addendum to the process that you are already been following in registering, advising, and orienting students to the class as well as teaching the courses. Where these policies do not conflict with the process presently followed, that process will be unchanged. Every effort has been made to ensure that the following changes streamline and reduce the work load of all, but especially of the campus representatives.
- Campus representatives are crucial in advising and registering students on their campus in the institutional equivalent courses of the EUSP online courses. They will continue to establish these institutional equivalent courses prior to advance registration and forward the first and last names, student numbers and email addresses (the " content information ") of the students who register to the EUSP online course administrator (currently Michael Baun at firstname.lastname@example.org) periodically as the registration procedure unfolds. The latter will request these periodically but typically not more than three times during the registration process.
- Course equivalents should be set at a limit of "0" students so students will have to talk to the campus representative before getting permission to register. This is necessary to control the number of students admitted into the course (so it does not get too large). The EU online course representative will periodically notify the campus reps of the ongoing enrollment numbers. Until such time as such notification occurs, it can be assumed that plenty of seats remain in the online courses for which registration is currently taking place.
- During the period of late registration, when most student registrations occur, it is important that the campus representatives send the contact information on students to the EUSP online course administrator so these can be kept up to date and forwarded to the instructors of the course
- Experience reveals that it is extremely easy, yet perilous, for characters in student email addresses to be transposed or otherwise misidentified at any point in the transfer of the content information (from student to campus representative, campus representative to course administrator, course administrator to instructor, and instructor back to student). Student email addresses are notorious for their complexity. Everyone involved in the process should make a special effort to ensure that the email addresses transferred at each point in the process are correct because, if they are not, students will not receive their orientation materials before the course begins and substantial administrative headaches will ensue for all.
- Please advise students that they will receive no information on the course except at the email address they supply to the campus representative.
- The campus representatives will receive, via a single email, the email addresses, full course titles of the online courses to be taught in the following semester, electronic copies of the syllabi for these courses, and electronic copies of the orientation letter sent by the instructor to the students in these classes. This information will be sent by the EUSP online course administrator to the campus representatives approximately three weeks before the beginning of the course . The purpose of this is to allow the campus representatives, if they wish , to provide orientation information more quickly to students who, for whatever reasons, have not been receiving information by email from the instructor. It is up to the campus representative to decide how to use this information. In other words, if a campus representative wishes to continue to proceed as before and contact the online course administrator or the instructor with the student's issue, then the course administrator and instructor will continue to work together to contact the student.
General Policies for Instructors
- Using the student email addresses on the course rosters distributed by the EU online course administrator, the instructors must contact students with a formal orientation at least three weeks before the beginning of the semester according to the University System calendar. For the content of this orientation letter see below. If the course is NOT taught in conjunction with the University of Munich, a single orientation letter should suffice. However, please be careful to watch for any "bounce-backs" of the emails (notices that the email has not been delivered). First check to see that the email was sent to the email address on the course roster supplied by the online course administrator. If it does match, forward the names of such students to the online course administrator who will obtain the correct email address and send it back to the instructor. The instructor will re-send the orientation material to the student using the correct email address.
- If a course IS taught in conjunction with the University of Munich, USG instructors MUST send two orientation letters to students at two very different times. The instructor sends one three weeks before the beginning of the August semester on the USG calendar, informing students of everything related to the class including the fact that the course will not begin until October. You should ideally have the exact October date worked out with your Munich counterpart before the August letter is emailed out. BUT you should almost assume that students will not remember or will lose this letter by late September. It is crucial that you send a follow-up email one to two weeks before the October start-up date of the course with all the information contained in the previous orientation letters. This is extremely important. Students are still contacting me in mid-November asking when the fall courses (which began in October) will begin ! Both orientation letters, in spite of their evident similarity, fulfill a crucial purpose. Without them, some serious problems experienced of late will almost certainly continue whenever courses tied to the Munich calendar are taught.
- The orientation letter should begin with the template for such orientations supplied by the EU online course administrator, which will be emailed to new instructors at least one month before the beginning of the course and subsequently kept on file by experienced instructors to use to notify student three weeks before the beginning of a course each time the course is taught . The assumption is that this template will be included in the orientation letter that the instructor emails to students three weeks before every online course begins. This template provides the form of the login and password for students to use as well as the institutional acronyms that form the last part of the student logins. The online letter also makes clear the start date of the course. The letter can contain anything more that the instructor wishes to add. These are just the required features.
- The course instructors should be very familiar with WebCT VISTA. It will be necessary for them to update the courses, release the timed quizzes and otherwise release information for student use themselves. The EU course administrator can and should as a courtesy try to fix broken links and investigate glitches, for example, but if the instructor can also do these things, it should usually fall on the instructor (as the sole party compensated for teaching and updating the course) to handle such modifications.
- In general, part of the administrative confusion in the recent past stems from an understandable uncertainty about who contacts the students with orientation information. The general rule of thumb is that orientation templates are supplied to the instructor by the EU online course administrator at least once (one month before the beginning of the first course taught by a new instructor), with the assumption that the instructor subsequently knows the process to follow in forwarding this information to the student . But--unless they are already facing a problematic situation which we are here trying to head off--students are never, as a general rule, contacted by anyone except by the instructor.