Undergraduate Orientation

UWI Open Campus Orientation

How you begin your academic career with us is important, so we encourage you to attend Orientation, whether in person at our physical sites across the region or online.  Attending our Orientation is the best way to acclimate to University life at The UWI Open Campus.

The sessions will help you to become familiar with the Campus, learn about what your student life will be like and register for your first semester of coursework. In addition, you will receive academic advisement, and meet the persons who you will be helpful to you during your time with us.

There are four phases of orientation exercises in which students may participate to prepare for studying online.

 

Online Orientation for New Students:

All new students in our undergraduate programmes are required to participate in a face-to-face orientation at their local UWI site or learning centres as well as an Online Orientation
To attend the Online Orientation you must have a computer and Internet access
New students should log on to and listen to the video as well as read the Programme Advising documents for their programme prior to registration - http://www.open.uwi.edu/undergraduate/programme-advising

Please visit our website at least two days prior to the date for your Online Orientation to download the software to your computer. If you experience difficulty downloading the software, you are encouraged to request assistance from your local site.

Our orientation activities were developed for students to become more familiar with our online learning environment. Such activities teach students how to edit their profile pictures, how to add a discussion topic, how to reference sources accurately and how to upload an assignment. The orientation sessions last for approximately six weeks and are done in four phases.

 

Phase 1 (two weeks)

During Phase 1 students are engaged in the Introduction to the Learning Exchange (LE); that is, the Open Campus’ online classroom. The aim of this phase is to use the instructional training videos on how to navigate the LE to teach students to develop the relevant navigational skills to function online. Students are encouraged to listen to the videos and practice the activities that follow.

Phase 2 (approximately three days)

 

The focus of Phase 2 of the orientation session is the academic programme advising. Students are made aware of their programme structure through meetings with their Programme Managers and other staff members. Through these meetings, the our staff ensures that students are prepared for the upcoming Registration period.

Phase 3 (two weeks)

All students are encouraged to enrol in the Programme Delivery Department‘s Orientation Course (PDDO) found on the LE. In this phase, students are prepared for their academic journey in the Learning Exchange. Students are given the opportunity to demonstrate what they learnt during phase 1 in the “Introduction to the Learning Exchange” course. They are given activities to simulate an actual course. These activities included updating their profile, participating in quizzes, uploading assignments, adding discussions, citation (referencing), accessing emails, becoming familiar with the plagiarism policy and many other important activities.

Phase 4 (approximately 5 days)

Phase 4 is done at the start of the teaching period. Students interact with their actual Course Coordinators and e-Tutors. The aim of this phase is to give our new students an overview of what is expected of them in their courses. These activities include:

-      uploading a close-up picture of your face to personalise your course page

-      posting a welcome message to introduce yourself

-      outlining your expectations of your Course Coordinators and e-Tutors.

 

Student Comments on Orientation:

Shane Ferrol

"To me, the Programme Delivery Department (PDD) Orientation course was essential and obligatory. This experience was very vital to the success of my journey with UWI Open Campus since it opened me to the do’s , don’t and what is to be expected throughout my journey as an online student. Everything ranging from forum discussions to the uploading of assignments and so forth was informative and beneficial. I am very pleased with the outcome of my experience and certainly do not see the necessity of additional explanatory material."

Cristal Trail

"This is my first time doing an online course. It was a great experience and everything went well, questions were answered promptly. Finding my way around was easy as instructions were clear and simple. I really enjoyed every bit of it. I hope when classes commence I can say the same."

Collin Karr

"I believe that this course accomplished what it had set out to do, that is, to help students learn to manoeuvre their way around the online system. I was impressed with the structured way in which the course was conducted: the information and exercises were sequenced well and the resources were apt and helpful. In addition, I was satisfied with the quality of the responses of the course personnel and their responses were given in a timely manner. Even though I studied at UWI before, I learned important things that I was not aware of; for example, my knowledge about plagiarism was greatly expanded – for instance, I was not aware of the different levels of plagiarism and that the treatment of the issue depends on the severity of the offence."

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