How to Study
Late Submission Policy
Writing Style Requirements
Class Behavior Expectations
Appeal Process for Grades and Other Disputes
Every student has their own method of studying for a course. Some students like to take notes as they read material; this is an excellent practice but not the only way to study. Our objective at Independence University is the help you prepare for a career rather than simply pass a course. To be more effective in that preparation, we recommend the following approach to studying in your courses to maximize your mastery of the subject. Again, you may elect to use other methods that work for your individualized study needs; this is just one recommended approach.
Reading – Reading and viewing course media, including assigned readings and videos, one time will not allow you to master the material. We recommend that you review the material at least three times in order to understand and retain the information. First, read the material completely, at least once. Then go back and review the material a second time. Thereafter, you should pick specific sections of the readings to review and study in-depth so that you fully understand the key principles. Taking notes of the reading or multi-media presentations is one way of enhancing your understanding of the material. Research on learning indicates that to master material a student should go over the material several times. As Dr. Judy Willis (2006) states: “Once information is successfully retrieved, it still needs to be reviewed between four and seven times to ensure retention. Review beyond a single perfect response permits the new neural networks to fire correctly more than once” (p. 18).
Quizzes and Exams – Quizzes and exams are types of assessments that not only test your knowledge, but help reinforce the learning process. Spending several hours reviewing material, including the readings, lectures, discussion boards, and supplemental materials can enhance your ability to move information from your short-term to your long-term memory. This is one of the reasons for the reflective assignment (or quiz) at the end of the course.
Research and writing short papers – Writing assignments are another way to help you find a deeper, long-term understanding of the learning objectives of the course. Reading about a topic from other researchers gives you a different perspective of the same learning objectives. Writing up your synthesis of knowledge helps cement the learning objectives into your long-term memory.
Live Lectures - Live lectures are recorded. Ideally you will attend the live lecture so that you can not only hear what the instructor and attending students contribute, but also have a chance to ask your own questions and participate in the dialog. Like the readings section above, if you want to master the material, watch and re-watch the recordings of the live lectures and take notes.
Discussions - Discussion Questions are a chance to develop ideas and questions related to the learning objectives of the course. Your primary post is tied directly to a set of questions that require some research. If you want to master the material and exceed expectations, instead of two or three outside sources, seek out and read multiple outside sources on the topic; instead of posting to two of your peers or instructor’s postings, follow up with multiple questions for clarification and deeper understanding.
Daily Checkpoints - Daily Checkpoints create an opportunity to take the learning for the course in bite-sized pieces. Questions in the daily checkpoints can expand beyond the learning objectives of the course and the questions are another way of mastering the materials for the course, with the exception of a couple of administrative items that are important to your long-term success as a student and future graduate.
The multiple approaches of readings, quizzes/exams, live lecture, daily checkpoints, discussion questions, research and writing are all different approaches to helping you master the material in your course. In some of our programs we have additional means of learning that include: clinicals, externships, field studies, writing computer programs, design projects, or additional program specific assignments. Our focus is on helping you to master materials so that you can be more employable in your field of study when you graduate. This is the approach to study for which these courses are designed. Again, it is only one approach, and you must use the approach that works most effectively for you. However, research continues to reaffirm the importance of repeated exposure to materials related to the course objectives to be prepared for your future career. “To our brain, we are either doing something we already know how to do or we are doing something new. If we are repeating earlier learning, there’s a good chance the neural pathways will become more and more efficient” (Jensen, 1998).
Jensen, Eric. Teaching with the brain in mind. 1998. Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development: Alexandria, Virginia
Willis, Judy. Research-based strategies to ignite student learning. (2006). Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development: Alexandria, Virginia
Weekly participation is expected in this course; you should complete the scheduled reading, discussion, assignment, and assessment for each week. Online students must log into their course and participate at least four days each week. Participation may impact your grade. Success in college (and this course specifically) and your future career depend on more than just reading and writing. You should constantly develop and demonstrate:
A weekly commitment is an essential part of your learning. The majority of your learning will be self-directed and the instructor will act as a guide on the side to assist with the disciplines involved to fully learn the material.
Questions and comments should be submitted via the learning management system (in our case Canvas) e-mail. Remember to include a descriptive subject line. Normal turnaround for responses to questions will be 24-48 hours (excluding holidays and weekends).
A positive learning environment is based on mutually respectful communication. Students are accountable for maintaining respectful communications with other students and with course instructors.
Communications that disrupt the learning environment include, but are not limited to, the use of profanity, insulting or harassing remarks in email, discussions, chat or telephone communications. Consequences of disruptive communications may include relinquishing the right to further class participation and being subject to removal from courses for the given term.
Students may submit late assignments which may be accepted up to one week from the due date with no more than a 20% reduction in grade with the exceptionof week 4 assignments. The instructor may set individual late policies, but the penalty for late work will not exceed a 20% reduction in grade.
Late assignments or assessments may be allowed in Week 4, but only if a student presents a mitigating circumstance (similar to those listed in the Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy). However, everything should be done to have the student complete coursework by the end of Week 4.
If the extension is granted as a result of mitigating circumstances, the student is given an Incomplete “I” grade for the course. The student will be allowed up to four weeks to complete the coursework. At the end of the four weeks, provided the coursework has been completed, a grade will be issued for the course. If the student does not complete the work in the time allotted, the “I” grade will be changed to an “F” grade.
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Students are expected to utilize credible resources when researching subjects for course papers, projects, etc. Online library resources are available, including help from the college’s librarian. Students are expected to use the college’s library whenever possible. You may access the library research databases at http://online-shc.com/arc/proquest/login.php. You can also access general library content by subject at https://online-shc.com/arc/library/library.php
Unless specifically stated otherwise, all written assignments are expected to follow the Institution Writing Guidelines (IWG).
All members of the College community are responsible for complying with the rules and regulations of academic integrity.
The following actions and/or behaviors shall be deemed to violate college rules and regulations and shall be subject to appropriate college disciplinary proceedings:
Plagiarism is the act of appropriating another person's written, artistic, or musical composition, or portions thereof, or ideas, language or symbols, and conveying the material as the product of one's own mind, without giving credit to the originator.
In written work, direct quotations, statements which are the result of paraphrasing or summarizing the work of another, and other information which is not considered common knowledge must be cited or acknowledged, usually in the form of a footnote. Quotation marks or a proper form of identification shall be used to indicate all direct quotations.
Cheating is the act of using or attempting to use, in examination or other academic work, material, information, or study aids which are not permitted by the instructor. Cheating includes, but is not limited to, having another person do research, write papers, complete assignments, or take examinations for someone else. The submission of large portions of the same work as part of the academic work for more than one course can be considered cheating unless such submission is permitted by the instructor.
Fabrication is the invention of material or its source and its use as an authority in academic work. Fabrication includes, but is not limited to, inventing the data for a scientific experiment; inventing the title and author of a publication in order to use the invented publication as a source; or knowingly attributing material to an incorrect source.
Examples of the above may include, but are not limited to:
Students who have engaged in academic misconduct are subject to the following consequences: (1) a zero or an "F" on the work in question; (2) a zero or an "F" in the course (3) disciplinary action (put on academic probation); (4) expulsion from the college; or (5) any combination thereof.
In case of a course or grade dispute, start with your instructor. If additional assistance is required, contact your associate dean.