While online courses are convenient and flexible, they also requires a combination of skills to succeed academically. Students must be self-motivated, disciplined and have strong time-management skills:
1. Before the semester begins, read over the syllabus carefully, and make note of due dates for required daily/weekly assignments. Understand the expectations of the course before it begins, and make sure that you can effectively budget your time accordingly, balancing your studies with work, family and personal obligations.
2. Online students must feel comfortable expressing themselves in writing, as some classes only require written assignments (while others combine essays with other forms of assessment like online quizzes).
3. Be proactive in asking and responding to questions from your instructor, as well as other students. Unlike a large traditional classroom, there's no hiding in an online classroom environment, and staying engaged in the learning process (including asking for help when you need it!) is especially important.
4. Online learning does not mean you'll be on your own, working independently. Many online courses require group projects, interactive discussion boards, and instant chat. Building relationships with your peers (even in an online environment) can help you build a network of support and be more successful in your studies.
5. Online students must be comfortable with their computers, and have access to a reliable high-speed internet connection. They must have knowledge of word processing software, web browsing and e-mail, know how to download and install a program from the web, and in some courses, know how to upload items from the PC to the web or have other technical expertise. Course descriptions will note if students are required to have a higher level of computer ability.
6. Review your syllabus to see which learning platform(s) your course will use, and test your connections to them before the intersession begins. If enrolling in a fully online course while in another nation, determining your access to all course materials in advance is especially important.
7. Make sure you have access to a good study environment, free from distractions like television and video games.
8. Focus on your course work. It is easy to get distracted while working in an online environment, and tempting to browse unrelated websites and social media platforms. While it's important to take breaks from time-to-time, be wary of online distractions that obstruct productive learning.
9. Keep your behavior professional, and treat your instructor and peers with respect. Even in an online environment, students are still expected to abide by Stony Brook's code of conduct, and bullying, intimidating, or threatening others will not be permitted.
10. Some courses may require in-person examinations at Stony Brook University or an off-site facility. Be sure to read over the notes on your course in the SOLAR System at the time of registration.
Most online courses (though not all) use Blackboard , Stony Brook University's learning management system (LMS). Blackboard includes a variety of features that allow instructors and students to do anything from uploading course documents, to posting an announcement, to collecting and grading assignments. Blackboard is available 24/7, from any computer with internet access.
Instructors of online courses frequently use Blackboard to:
- Post online announcements
- Post course content (ex: syllabi, videos, podcasts, handouts, presentations, etc.)
- Send e-mails to students at their Stony Brook e-mail address (Google)
- Pose questions for online discussions
- Collect and grade assignments/assessments
- Manage your grades and/or make them visible to you
- Create groups for discussions and projects
- And much more...
The Blackboard App can be downloaded on many smartphones and tablets.
- Blackboard Learn: For Students : Complete series of short video tutorials to help students use the various Blackboard Learn tools to be successful online.
- Working in Your Course : A playlist to help students learn how to access course content, take tests, turn in assignments, and other course related activities.
- Staying Organized and Communicating : A playlist to help students use course tools to communicate and and manage course work.
- Setting Your Preferences and Environment : A playlist to help students customize their Blackboard experience and set their preferences.
- Academic and Transfer Advising Services: Have questions about choosing the right course? Contact an advisor today.
- Stony Brook Bookstore: Order your books before classes begin.
- Bursar: For help with billing and payment.
- Counseling and Psychological Services: CAPS staff are available by phone, day or night.
- Student Accessibility Support Center (SASC): Students in need of special accommodations should contact SASC.
- Library: Access to online databases, electronic journals, eBooks, and more!
- Registrar: Having a registration issue? Let us know.
- Writing Center: Students are able to schedule face-to-face and online appointments.
Support is available for students M-F 8:30am - 4:30pm. Students can report an issue online at: service.stonybrook.edu or call 631.632.9800
Stony Brook School of Nursing Online program students ONLY:
SB School of Nursing using a different blackboard system. You can log in at: https://sbsn.blackboard.com/ If you need assistance logging into please contact the School of Nursing Technical Support Line at 631-444-7505 or email: SON_IT_Help@stonybrook.edu.
Division of Information Technology prepared the following guide, outlining the major tools which students in Stony Brook are using, including Solar System, Wireless Network WolfieNet, Academic Tools, such as Blackboard, etc. To access the guide, please go to https://it.stonybrook.edu/students.
GET TO KNOW BLACKBOARD
Blackboard is the primary learning management system used in most programs at Stony Brook. You'll use it to access course material, online lectures, discussion boards, and interactive multimedia content.
Note: The appearance of your course's content in Blackboard may differ from the presentation above based on your academic unit.