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Online Education image - online student at the library

Here are some key terms for online learning you'll want to know. More are sure to be added, so check back often.  Be sure to visit the Canvas Glossary to become familiar with terms related to the Canvas Learning Management System by Instructure.

  • Online course instructors often include Announcements on the home page each week of the course to direct students’ attention to new topics, assignments, due dates, and upcoming quizzes or tests.

  • Students can find their requirements, directions, guidelines, templates, and examples at the Assignments site. This is where they enter or attach the text of their assigned project to be examined and scored by the course instructor.  Enables creation, distribution, collection, and grading of online assignments. Assignments are private; submissions are not visible to other students in the site.

  • A Chat Room is a "place" where two or more individuals connected to the Internet have real-time (live) conversations by typing messages into their computer. Groups gather to chat about various subjects. As thoughts are typed, they are displayed to the other members of the chat group. Some online instructors use a chat room to provide online "office hours". Students may also use a chat room to discuss group projects or to schedule study group meetings.

  • The Home Page is generally the first page of a web site and often acts as the information center for the entire site. From the home page, users can navigate to other web pages within the web site.

  • A Link is a graphic or text within a website document which can be clicked on to transfer the student to more information within the same website or to another site.

  • Logging on is the process of connecting to a computer network. You will usually need to enter a password to log on.

  • Messages is a system used to send messages from one computer to another by means of a computer network. Most will allow files or documents to be "attached" for sending with the e-mail. This is an asynchronous form of communication. It is probably the most commonly used method for distance education students to submit assignments.

  • To Navigate is to move around the web by clicking on the links (or paths) that takes you from one web page to another. As you navigate, you move from one computer to another and from one server to another without realizing it.

  • Online Education refers to a way to teach or learn that makes use of Internet tools to communicate and collaborate in an educational setting (e.g., online course). Internet tools include discussion boards, chat rooms, emails, resource folders, learning modules, and more.

  • Each instructor creates a Syllabus to explain the goals and objectives of the online course, activities to be engaged in, requirements to be met, and dates that assignments are due and/or tests to be taken.

  • A Thread refers to a chain of postings on a single subject in a group. When you "reply" or "forward" an e-mail to someone else and include the original message below a new one, it creates a series of messages which become a thread.