This orientation will help you learn more about the function of Blackboard and standards that will be used throughout your course.

Click the headings below to learn about each topic.


Course Syllabus

Before you do anything, review the course Syllabus. It will explain what is expected of you. Notice what textbook is needed and pay close attention to your assignments and their due dates. Your syllabus is your guide for the entire semester.

The course syllabus can be found by selecting the syllabus button in the main menu.


Course Instructor

You need to know who is teaching your course and how to contact him/her. Select the Faculty Information button from the main menu and review the contact information there.


University and Course Policies

University Policies
- Student code of conduct http://www.ltu.edu/myltu/code-conduct.asp
- Academic honor code (graduate students) http://www.ltu.edu/provosts_office/graduate_student_policies.asp
- Academic honor code (all students) http://www.ltu.edu/myltu/honor-code.asp
- Grade of “Incomplete” policy http://www.ltu.edu/advising/fac_adv_policies.asp
- Non-discriminatory policy http://www.ltu.edu/myltu/non-discriminatory.asp

Course Guidelines NOTE: The following online guidelines are general and may differ for particular programs, courses and instructors. Please refer to the syllabus and/or course orientation for specifics about that course’s online expectations.

Electronic Communication. All assignments are to be turned in via Blackboard unless otherwise specified. If you would like to email the Instructor but think the answer to your question(s) could benefit your classmates, please consider posting it within the equivalent of your course’s FAQ Discussion Forum if that is available to you. Please respect everyone’s voices, privacy, and copyright privileges. For general guidelines about Netiquette, please see: http://www.albion.com/netiquette/corerules.html

Attendance. For most online courses, your attendance is demonstrated by checking Blackboard and accessing items, participating in the online Discussion or via other interaction tools (Collaborate, Google Hangouts, etc.), and turning in completed Assignments at the time that they are due. In general, you do not want to accrue the equivalent of more than 1-2 unexcused absences in an online course. Attendance policies, however, may vary by department and college, so please see your syllabus for any further information about attendance.

Late Work. Assignments are due by stated ‘Central Time’ due dates. If you are unable to meet the deadline due to an excusable emergency, please let your instructor know in advance or as soon as you are able to. Please send an email with your explanation, any corresponding documentation (e.g. doctor’s note, travel for athletes, etc.), and what you are proposing be done in lieu of missed deadline, whether an extension or a make-up exam, etc., and depending on the Instructor’s late work policy, a decision will be made.

Instructor Communication. Most LTU Online courses follow a Monday-Sunday Module framework. Instructor response time is generally within 48 hours however this does not necessarily include the weekends. If you have a question, please try to inquire prior to Friday. Most instructors schedule online office hours per email request. Instructor grading of assignments varies depending on the instructor and the type of assignment however in general, students may receive grades and/or feedback within 1-3 weeks from the time the assignment was turned in.

Success Tips

Top 10 Tips for Success as an Online Student

Student Advice

Advice from LTU Online Students

Technology Policies and Services

Minimum technical requirements and instructions for use:
- eHelp (Technical support) http://www.ltu.edu/ehelp/
- Blackboard Instructions http://www.ltu.edu/ehelp/bb_blackboard_for_students.asp
- Panopto Instructions http://www.ltu.edu/ehelp/panopto_student_info.asp
- Collaborate Instructions http://www.ltu.edu/ehelp/bb_collaborate.asp
- Google Hangouts Instructions https://support.google.com/hangouts/?hl=en#topic=2944848

Minimum technical skills and special technology tools:
LTU Online courses are completely online. All delivery of instructional material and all interaction takes place over the internet via the Blackboard learning management system. Minimum technical skills involve basic word processing skills, managing multiple windows, sending and receiving email attachments, internet searching, and downloading and uploading files. Students need Internet access and may need one or more of the following plug-ins:

- Adobe Acrobat Reader http://www.adobe.com/products/acrobat/readstep2.html
- Word Viewer http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=4
- PowerPoint Viewer http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=13
- Silverlight Plug-In (may be required for Panopto recordings) http://www.microsoft.com/getsilverlight/Get-Started/Install/Default.aspx
- Configure your computer for Collaborate Sessions http://support.blackboardcollaborate.com/ics/support/default.asp?deptID=8336&task=knowledge&questionID=1473
- Google Hangouts Plug-In https://www.google.com/tools/dlpage/hangoutplugin
*Note: Unless otherwise stated in the syllabus and/or course information, there are no other third-party software nor respective special technology privacy policies.

Technology accessibility statements:
- Blackboard Accessibility http://www.blackboard.com/Platforms/Learn/Resources/Accessibility.aspx
- Panopto Accessibility http://support.panopto.com/documentation/viewing/accessibility-features
- Collaborate Accessibility http://www.blackboard.com/Platforms/Collaborate/Products/Blackboard-Collaborate/Web-Conferencing/Accessibility.aspx
- Google Hangouts Accessibility http://www.google.com/accessibility/all-products-features.html


Submitting Assignments

Discussion Board

Using the Discussion Board

Post Quality

High Quality vs. Low Quality Discussion Board Posts

Weekly Schedule

Most LTU courses begin new modules on Mondays and end them on Sundays. This video shows what a typical week for an online student might look like.


The SafeAssignment Blackboard tool monitors for plagiarism by comparing submitted documents to sources from the web and its database to check for "unoriginal" content. If your instructor uses SafeAssignment, you will be asked to submit your work differently than regular assignments. Use these directions to ensure your work is submitted properly.

Getting Help

Help is never far away, but knowing where to go for assistance depends on what you need. Use these steps for getting help.


• First, LTU's eHelp website ltu.edu/ehelp will answer most of your questions regarding LTU technology tools. This short video clip shows you how to access eHelp from Blackboard.

• Second, ask a classmate. Post to the discussion board or email your colleagues. Odds are that someone has already discovered the answer to your question.

• Third, email the LTU HelpDesk (helpdesk@ltu.edu) or eLearning Services (elearning@ltu.edu). They can help with any technical problems you may have.

• Fourth, ask your professor. He or she can help or get you in touch with someone who can.

Student Services

Student Academic Services
- Library http://www.ltu.edu/library/
- Library Lib Guides http://libguides.ltu.edu/
- Getting Started at the Library http://tinyurl.com/o8trqv5
- How to Cite References http://libguides.ltu.edu/citing
- Academic Achievement Center (AAC) http://www.ltu.edu/aac/
- e-Tutoring Request Form http://tinyurl.com/csjzvqb
- AAC Writing Center http://www.ltu.edu/aac/writingcenter.asp

Student Support Services
- Disability Services http://www.ltu.edu/myltu/disability.asp
- How to register for disability services http://www.ltu.edu/myltu/how_to_register.asp
- Student Advising http://www.ltu.edu/advising/
- Career Services http://www.ltu.edu/career_services
- Central Portal for All Student Services http://www.ltu.edu/myltu/

Are You Ready?

Return to your Blackboard course to take a short quiz to demonstrate your understanding of what is expected of you as an online student. The quiz does not count toward your grade, but you must score 80% or above in order for your course content to load. You can take this quiz multiple times.

Once you complete the quiz, select the Modules button to begin your course.