Getting Started with Online Courses
Now you have decided to take online course(s), after registering online courses, you are ready to get started. At present, Bloomfield College uses a Web-based course management system called Blackboard for our online courses. Students new to Blackbaord should review the tutorials on Blackboar support site beforehand. Your course(s) will not be available for access until the offcial start date, unless you have receieved instructions from your instructor.
1. Check Computer Hardware Configurations
Use the information in Technical Requirements section to make sure your computer meets minimum requirements.
2. Test Your Web Browser
If this is your first time taking online course(s), you should run a browser test to make sure it meets Blackboard's minimum requirements. This test will find out what version of browser on your computer, and if you have necessary plug-ins installed on your computer.
Please pay attention to the test results and make sure your computer is configured properly. Your browser need to pass test for all items.
Click to run browser test
3. Student Email and Blackboard Accounts
All registered students will get an assigned accoount to access computers in the lab and classroom on campus, the same account is also used to access Bloomfield College email and Blackbaord. BC email address is the only email used in Blackboard for communication to and from the online instructor. All students must fill out an account application in order to get the account set up. The application form can be downloaded on the Web.
If you take online coruses, you must maintain your mailbox open all time to ensure you don't miss important information from your instructor.
4. Accessing Blackboard
To access your course(s) on Blackboard, please go to http://blackboard.bloomfield.edu or http://www.bloomfield.edu and click "Blackboard" (bottom of Curent Students and Faculty/Staff section of page), or go to http://campus.bloomfield.edu and click "Blackboard" under the Quick Links.
Remember: if the links on College's Website cannot be accessible, you should try http://blackboard.bloomfield.edu. Click here for log on instructions.
During the Course
Once you have started the course, now the "real work" begins. In addition to mastering the new material you are being taught, you will need to master the virtual environment of Blackboard. Spend some time - before any due dates - exploring your class site. Find and carefully read the syllabus, lecture notes, assignments, quizzes/exams, and the discussion forum. Learn how to contact your instructor if you need help.
It is important to remember that most online classes require on-campus testing and/or participation. Check with your instructor.
Contacting your Instructor
In general, there are three ways to contact your instructor for an online course. You may use the phone, use email, or use the discussion forum. Each instructor has a preferred method - you should discover what it is before you need help on an assignment. Keep in mind, please, that instructors generally do not sit near their computer waiting for your message. You should expect an instructor to return your electronic message within a day or two (longer on weekends and holidays). Each instructor has their own response time policy - you need to know this as well.
Using the Discussion Board
The discussion board is an excellent area to post questions about the course, to answer questions or discussion items from your instructor, and - depending on the course - talk about other items as well.
Turning in Assignments
Your instructor will specify the method of submitting assignments. Be sure you know how to do this before any due dates. In general,you will submit assignment either through Assignment submission, or using the Digital Dropbox. See Blackboard Quick Tips for more information.
Some courses require special access or PIN codes to view the course material. If this applies to your course, it is very important you understand the proper use of these codes well before any assignment due dates. You should consult your textbook publisher's Web site for information on how to use your code. If you are still having troubles, you should then contact your instructor via email for additional assistant in accessing the online course material.
There are also some courses that require you to view material on external web sites to prepare you for exams or even to take these exams. As before, work with your instructor by carefully reading any instructions they may send you so you can access this material well before any due dates
At the End of the Course
At the end of the course, you may want to keep some of your course work, online discussions, instructor feedback, etc. Here are some places you can check:
Digital Dropbox - Your submitted final version of your work. In windows environment, right-click each documents, choose Save Target As or Save Link As, to save the document to the compute's local drive.
Assignments - If your instructor collected homework through Assignments, you can go back to the Assignemnts section, click the particular assignment, you will see your submitted work. if your instructor returned your work from instructor with feedback or comments, you may find in the assignemnt as well.
Gradebook - Some instructors may give feedback/comments on your homework, your can click on the grade points to read.
Discussion Board - To save a copy of discussions, you open the discussion forum, In Tree View, choose Select All thread, click Go, and then click Collect at the top of discussion to display all threads chronologically. Use your mouse to select all, right-click to bring up popup menu, select Copy, open Word Processing Applicaiton, paste, and save the document.