Back To School Special

I’m officially back to study as of Monday, and this study period looks like it will be an interesting one. I’m doing 2 units again, both through Curtin, so no more dealing with RMIT‘s poor efforts at online education.

There are a lot of people who I’ve studied with before in my classes, so it kind of feels like I’m getting to know all the other people who are currently studying the BA Internet Studies. I’ve also looked at my assessment timeline, and it’s pretty solid – basically something due roughly every 2 weeks for the entire study period ๐Ÿ™

We’ll see how things go this time around! New computer just in time as well, nearly finished getting it set up and configured, just a few more things to do and then it’s all go.

Here We Go, Here We Go, Here We Go…

First day of study period 4 today!

This time around, I’m only doing one unit, called EBS11: Strategic E-Business. This should be interesting, if for no other reason than it’s offered through RMIT, rather than Curtin, which delivers most of my other units.

The unit has 3 assignments, worth 30, 40 and 30% of the total, in order. They look like they are going to be a bit of writing ๐Ÿ™

On first glances, I can make the following observations;

  1. Their LMS, “SERF” looks terrible. The UI is a shocker, and it’s not intuitive at all.
  2. The unit looks quite comprehensive, although I suppose that will remain to be seen once I start reading etc
  3. There’s an external text book, but I think I’ll hold off on buying it unless I really need to (this is an elective after all).

I’ll keep things up to date on here on the way through, and hopefully this unit won’t make my festive season too much of a drag!

More Dramas With Curtin

Well, after the usual 15 transfers and multiple “we don’t deal with thats”, I have finally gained access to the WebCT system which runs all of the online courses at Curtin — only to find out that apparently I’m not enrolled in anything at Curtin as of yet! (read: they haven’t gotten around to adding the 2 units I am enrolled in to my account, so I can’t access them!).

The stupid thing is that in the end, I knew my password, all I needed was someone to tell me what my username was, so that
I could try out a couple passwords and guess the right one. I don’t even want to get started on how I feel about finally
getting online, only to find that I still can’t start — I’ll email the course co-ordinator and see if he knows when we might
actually start…

More Stuff From Curtin

Well, my study must be getting closer, I got a bunch of stuff from Curtin in the mail welcoming me to the unit(s) and a
basic outline of rules and stuff like that. It had a space for my student number… but I didn’t get one. There was a note
saying that it was “to be advised”, so I emailed them and will wait and see. They are probably confused because
I already have a Curtin student number and they don’t know for sure if it’s the same person or whatever.

Advanced Standing Approved

Just heard from Matt and my advanced standing has been approved – for 10 units at this stage.

I have also arranged my registration for 2 units for SP2, 2003; they are NET12 (Internet Studies) and REA11 (Applied Reasoning!)

I’m looking forward to REA11, I just hope it’s not too abstract or anything strange and annoying (the whole “argue by changing the subject” approach really gets me), but I am reserving judgement until I get into it ๐Ÿ™‚ NET12 should be an interesting introduction to the core of the degree I think, so that will be interesting to see what things are going to be like ๐Ÿ˜‰

It’s In Their Hands Now

I called Curtin to confirm that they had received my application and apparently they had, but it was sitting on a pile of paperwork untouched. After convincing them that it was indeed important (and had to get to the degree co-ordinator for advanced standing approval before the next study period began…), I think it should have been passed on to Matt for review/approval. He should receive it early next week hopefully.

Ahhh bureaucracy, how we love you!

Now I just have to wait and hear from Matt, hopefully to get the good news that I can have 12 units of approved advanced standing into the degree!

Who’s The Idiot?

Well, me apparently. Purely by chance, I found out that the postage charge for a local letter here has gone up to 50c per letter. I clicked that I mailed in my application for enrollment using a 45c stamp that I still had, apparently from before they changed the rate!!!

I don’t know for sure if this means that my application hasn’t got there yet, so I emailed the guy who is supposed to be looking at my advanced standing (Matt), but he says that he hasn’t received it yet.

Now I have emailed LSN/CEA/OLA@Curtin to find out if it made it to Curtin at all, but who ever knows with that place – I’ve worked there, and I know how easy it is for mail (etc!) to go missing and never be seen again. *Fingers Crossed!*

Welcome To The Hive

OLA uses a product called “The Hive“, which is produced by a local, Perth company called HarvestRoad. The Hive manages the content and delivery of all online courses from OLA, so I will be interested to see how successfully it manages to do this. I know from experience that managing an online course isn’t particularly easy to do well.

When I worked at Curtin Uni, I worked in one of the many divisions which were pursuing online education as a feasible option. The area that I worked in (SMEC) actually delivered all of their postgraduate degrees in an entirely online fashion. We actually ended up using straight, plain old HTML because we needed to get everything on CD-ROM as well as the ‘net, and it turned out to be easier that way. It was an interesting time and taught me some good stuff about working with the limitations of certain technology, dependant on your users.

I’ll be sure to keep you all posted on my experiences within the Hive ๐Ÿ™‚ (which is now called the HarvestRoad LCMS for those interested).

Praise Be To Matt

Wow – I wasn’t expecting that. Unless it was a typo of some sort, this is what Matt had to say about my enrollment in the BArts(Net Studies);

I am the person who assesses these ๐Ÿ™‚ – basically, I’d be looking at 8 units (out of 24) advanced standing – how does that sound?

and I was thinking – “bugger, that’s less than I was hoping for, so I trudged along to read the next message which said…

Just remembered – since you have units at Curtin already…12 units (which is the maximum I can give)…

and now, funnily enough, I have a very large smile on my face! This is excellent! With only 12 units remaining, I might still be able to finish by the end of 2004!