COLLEGE OF ENGINEERING & SCIENCE
Students who engage throughout the course are more successful than those who don’t. Therefore, students are required to complete all assignments by the due date and to actively participate in class discussions and assignments. Louisiana Tech uses Moodle for course management, and students are required to log on to the platform at least once a week. In general, successful students are on Moodle every day. Students are expected to complete assignments, discussions, and other weekly deliverables as directed by the instructor and outlined in the syllabus.
Contact your instructor as soon as possible if you find that you cannot meet the minimum requirements for your courses. Students will be marked absent for any week they did not actively participate in the course.
Primary Mode of Communication
Students are expected to use their University-issued email address as their primary means of communication and to fully identify who they are and what class they are in when contacting their instructor.
Students are expected to log in to the course on Moodle within the drop/add period (first three class days of the term). If you are unable to log in to the course on Moodle during that period, then you should contact your instructor or the computing center for assistance. Instructors take attendance based on Moodle participation in the course.
Lead Time for Questions
Due to instructor availability and communication lag times, students should not necessarily expect an answer to questions less than 24 hours before a test or assignment is due. For that reason, we encourage students to submit questions as early as possible.
Policy on Late Work and Make-Up Exams
If extenuating circumstances prevent a student from submitting work by the due date, the student must email the instructor to make alternate arrangements prior to the due date, to the extent possible. Otherwise, graded activities will not be accepted after the due date. The course syllabus will provide specifics on how to schedule the makeup. The instructor determines whether or not an extenuating circumstance exists and the timeline for alternate arrangements.
Some examples of extenuating circumstances include
- family emergencies,
- illness with a doctor’s excuse,
- or last-minute work-related travel.
Assessments (quizzes/exams) must be taken as scheduled on the syllabus. Exceptions may only be made in extenuating circumstances and at the discretion of the instructor. Makeup assessments may differ from the original assessment but will cover the same material.
Course Etiquette for Threaded Discussions and Forums
In the absence of face-to-face communication, it is easy to misunderstand what is intended in a written message. Take the following steps to ensure that you communicate clearly and respectfully.
- Carefully review and read materials that you receive electronically to ensure that you fully understand the message.
- Be sure to carefully re-read and understand what you send to ensure that you are not misunderstood.
- Avoid cluttering your messages with excessive emphasis (stars, arrows, exclamations).
- Be specific and clear, especially when asking questions.
- If your messages can be typed in UPPER and lowercase, please use the two appropriately instead of all UPPERCASE characters. This gives the appearance of shouting and makes the message less readable.
- Remember that English is not the native language of all your peers, so make allowance for possible misunderstandings due to translation errors.
- Likewise, even students who speak English fluently may have different views on what is considered courteous vs. what is considered discourteous.
- Follow the same standards of politeness as you do in face-to-face conversations.
Minimum Access (Wireless, Computer, etc):
You will need access to a laptop/desktop computer with a reliable internet connection to complete online assignments. A 24-hour computer lab is housed in the Student Center for on-campus students.
Most courses will require a laptop/desktop running a Windows or Mac operating system and access to a broadband internet connection. Check with your instructor for specific software requirements for the course and with the software vendor for minimum hardware recommendations.
The allowed format for assignment submissions should be included in the syllabus or assignment.
The University maintains a server running a virtual desktop with a variety of software programs used in each of the Colleges on campus. Contact your instructor for information about access.
If you need testing or classroom accommodations based on a documented disability, discuss the need with the instructor during the first week of class. You’ll need to register with Louisiana Tech’s Office of Testing Services.
Posting of Course Syllabus to Moodle
The instructor should post the course syllabus to Moodle by the first day of the quarter to allow students to drop the course during the drop/add period if they wish to do so.
Minimum Hardware and Software Requirements
Each instructor is responsible for identifying the specific software and/or hardware requirements for the course on their syllabus. The instructor may consult with the software vendor and/or the Computing Center for assistance with this information.
Faculty should understand that online students have different scheduling needs than on-campus students. For example, some students who are working professionals may only be able to spend significant amounts of time focused on course material during the weekends. Faculty of online courses should, therefore, set aside time on the weekends to answer emails at least once or twice and to provide meaningful responses to student questions when an assignment or exam is scheduled for the upcoming week. Faculty should tell students if they are going to be unavailable to respond to questions for a given period of time.
Faculty may also find it useful to set up online conference hours or discussion forums.
Instructors are expected to reply to student questions within 24 hours during the week and within 48 hours on the weekend. In the event of special circumstances when an instructor cannot respond to students within these time frames, the instructor is expected to alert the students.
Taking into account potentially different work schedules for online students, faculty are encouraged to give students at least one week to complete assignments. More time should be allocated for the completion of larger projects.
Testing and Evaluation
For timed, graded evaluations that have a significant impact on students’ grades, faculty must ensure that students are properly proctored by an independent person or entity. Examples of appropriate proctoring arrangements include official testing centers, libraries, and online services like ProctorU. Some examples of unacceptable persons for proctoring include family members, coworkers and direct supervisors, former teachers, ministers and members of the clergy, and other students. Faculty members should ensure that students have selected an acceptable proctor or service well in advance of any such evaluation in accordance with the proctor requirements set forth in this document. Faculty should clearly describe in their course syllabus the requirements for testing and evaluation, including proctoring.
Faculty should understand that there is a proctoring fee associated with each quiz or testing event. Faculty should therefore include no more than four proctored events in each course. Faculty should clearly describe the testing parameters and allowed materials on the documentation for each proctored exam, preferably on the first page of the exam and/or in an exam guidelines document posted by the instructor on Moodle.
Faculty should make students aware of the testing requirements, including any necessary technology, so that students may take these requirements into account when identifying a proctor. As a note, some proctors may not permit students to use their own devices.
To ensure that proctors understand the parameters for each proctored event, faculty should clearly indicate their specific instructions for testing. Specific instructions should include maximum allowed time, whether a bathroom break is allowed, allowable calculators, open versus closed books, any other allowed materials, and any other specific directions the instructor has for the proctor.
Faculty should decide whether they will return graded exams. In this case, the faculty should recognize the exam would then exist in the public domain and new exams should be written in subsequent quarters to prevent academic dishonesty.
Faculty should provide instructional videos for their courses. The College encourages faculty to record their own lecture videos, but the College recognizes that high-quality videos may be available from other sources. Faculty will ensure that all videos provided are legally obtained and of appropriate quality to communicate the course content.
To the extent possible, faculty are encouraged to grade assignments and exams within one week of the submission date. If graded assignments and exams cannot be returned before the next exam, then solutions should at least be posted before the next exam. It is important to let students know when they can expect a grade on an assignment or exam, particularly if the process of grading is expected to take much longer than one week.
In setting the exam schedule, instructors are expected to provide students with at least a 24-hour window of time for completing the exam.
Faculty making an exception to or altering course policy between the on-campus and online sections should note those differences in the course syllabus.
Louisiana Tech University Honor Code
The Louisiana Tech University Honor Code applies to all courses taught by the University, including online courses. As with all on-campus courses, students in online courses are expected to read and adhere to the Honor Code. See the University Catalog for a complete statement of the Honor Code: https://www.latech.edu/current-students/registrar-office/university-catalog/
The College values the integrity of its online courses and degree programs. In keeping with that standard, many instructors choose to evaluate their students through proctored testing. Proctored testing allows students to complete exams in a secure and comfortable monitored environment. A proctored exam is a test that is overseen by an impartial individual (the proctor) who monitors a student while he or she takes the exam.
To the extent appropriate for a particular online course, instructors are encouraged to use web-based monitoring services, such as ProctorU, for administering exams. Students enrolled in online sections of courses may take exams on-campus if an on-campus exam location is available (e.g. if there is a corresponding face-to-face section or the instructor arranges for an on-campus exam). In cases where a student is unable to travel to campus for exams, the student must make arrangements for an exam proctor.
Exam proctoring is administered using a proctor or proctoring service. Such monitoring services are likely fee-based, and the student is responsible for covering any costs associated with the monitoring service (average $25-$50 per proctored assessment).
Proctored Testing Guidelines for Students
- Students enrolled in an online section of a class are responsible for finding a proctor. Students enrolled in an online section may take the exam with the on-campus section of the class. Students enrolled in the on-campus section of a class must take the test on-campus with the class.
- For students who want to take their exams in Ruston, the only options available besides the instructor are the Louisiana Tech Library or, for students with a documented disability, the Louisiana Tech Testing and Disability Services (TDS).
- The student must use an official testing center (either independent or associated with a university or college) as a proctor if there is one located within a 40-mile radius of the student’s current geographic location at the time of testing. If an official testing center is not available, students may use a public or college librarian that offers proctoring services. Any exception to these rules for selecting a proctor must be approved by the course instructor, COES Proctor Coordinator, and the Program Coordinator for the degree.
- Students must identify a proctor and gain preliminary approval of the proctor from the course instructor or COES Proctor Coordinator by sending the completed Proctor Information Request form (See Appendix) in an email to the course instructor and COES Proctor Coordinator. The Proctor Information Request form will be provided to the student by the course instructor. This form must be submitted at least 2 weeks prior to the first exam (or earlier if specified by the course instructor).
- After the student gains preliminary approval from their proctor, a Proctor Agreement Form (obtained from the course instructor, See Appendix for sample) and Scheduled Test Times (to be completed by the proctor and student) will be e-mailed to the proctor by the COES Proctor Coordinator. Students are responsible for contacting the approved proctor and setting up a time to meet with the proctor, sign the form, and schedule an appointment (i.e., a beginning exam time) on the designated exam dates. These forms must be completed and returned to the COES Proctor Coordinator at least 1 week prior to the first exam (or earlier if specified by the course instructor).
- Students are responsible for taking scheduled exams on the scheduled date. The student will show a driver’s license or other government-issued photo identification to the proctor. The student can take the test on an alternate date if it is pre-approved by the instructor.
- Students are responsible for adhering to the time allotted for each proctored event.
Proctor Roles and Responsibilities
Proctors serve a vital role in the administration of exams for online students. They help preserve the academic integrity of Louisiana Tech’s online courses. As such, all proctoring services assume the following responsibilities:
- Receive and administer exams. Prior to the scheduled exam start time, the exam and cover sheet containing specific instructions for the exam will be emailed to the proctor.
- Check student identity via a photo ID, preferably government-issued.
- Confirm all necessary technologies are available and working, e.g. printer, scanner, email, and other technologies as described in the Course Proctor Agreement Form.
- Monitor students during test taking. Proctors should visually monitor students frequently.
- Follow the instructor’s requirements for administering the exam. These may include a time limit, specific permissible materials (including the type or model of the calculator), etc.
- Ensure that no phones, backpacks, smartwatches, or purses are allowed in the testing area.
- Return exams to the COES Proctor Coordinator as soon after the test is completed as possible. It is preferred that exams are returned electronically as a single pdf file. After the successful submission of the exam to the COES Proctor Coordinator, the exam and all accompanying materials are to be destroyed.
Sample List of Approved Testing Centers
The following is a partial list of testing centers that have been previously approved.
Southern Arkansas University Tech Testing Center
Colorado State University Testing Center
Florida State College – Jacksonville Assessment and Certification Center
Gwinnett Technical College Assessment Center
Baton Rouge Community College Testing Center
Bossier Parish Community College Testing Center
Louisiana State University – Alexandria Office of Testing Services
Louisiana Tech University – Barksdale Air Force Base
Louisiana Tech University – Prescott Library
Northwestern State University Testing Center
SOWLA Technical Community College Testing Center
University of Louisiana- Lafayette Counseling and Testing Center
University of New Orleans Office of Testing Services
University of Maryland University College Learning Testing Center
Pearl River Community College Testing Center
Montana State University Testing Services
New York Business Institute
University of Akron Testing Services
Tulsa Community College Testing Center
Greenville Technical College Academic Testing Center
Midlands Technical College Testing Center
Southwest Tennessee Community College Testing Center
Joint-Base San Antonio – Lackland Air Force Base
Lone Star College – Cypress Center Testing Center
Tarrant County College Northwest Campus Testing Center
University of Texas – Arlington Testing Services Office
University of Texas – Tyler Testing Center
Northern Virginia Community College Testing Center