What sort of internet access will you be using?
A dial-up system is most often too slow. On the other hand, sometimes a very high-tech broadband internet access will become overloaded when fifty students get online at the same time. You may need to come early or stay late--when only a few users are taxing the system. Try these tests:
Three tests to determine your computer readiness
Try these three tests to determine your computer readiness:
Test #1 for normal usage--After you type in or paste www.catherinecollege.net/moodle/
into your internet browser, how many seconds does it take for your browser
to completely display the front page? Close your browser and repeat this test
a second time. [Should ideally be less than 120 seconds on the first try and
under 20 seconds on the second try.] Please share
with me your actual results for this test.
Test #2 for chatroom usage--After you type in or paste http://phs.basechat.com/basechat/aspxChat/basechat.html.aspx?rid=D19QTX0001R8 into your internet browser, how many seconds does it take for your browser to completely display the login page for the chatroom? Close your browser and repeat this test a second time. [Should ideally be less than 20 seconds on the first try and under 10 seconds on the second try.] Please share with me your actual results for this test.
Test #3 for chatroom functioning--After completing Test #2, go to the login page for the chatroom (as in Test #2). Type in your first name in the place provided and click the "Enter Chat" button. Then type some words into the message box at the bottom of the chatroom. Click on the "Send" button. How many seconds does it take before your words appear in the upper chatroom (where everyone can see it)? Repeat this two or three times. Please share with me your actual results for this test.
Note: If you are unable to complete any of these tests, click here to make certain that the capabilities of your computer and its internal settings is correct. Ask someone who is computer savvy for help.
Test #4 for video playbacks--Click twice on the large icon of the Irish woman below to view a video of the poetry of Alicia Keys. The visual and audio portion of this video should be clear, continuous, and intelligible. [Do not be discouraged if you are unable to see or hear anything of this video. This usually means that your computer does not yet have the required software for this task. This can be easily remedied later.] Please share with me your actual results for this test, no matter what happens.
All courses (save for Women Writing) will use some video material--some more, some less. You could get by without video reception; yet, you would be losing something in the process. In effect, this test pushes your computer system to its limit. If your reception is choppy (starts and stops), then try it again at a time and on a day that test #1 indicates best reception (as detailed below). If it is satisfactory, then you have learned something about your computer system that will save you a lot of heartaches in the future. So, you're ready to begin your adventure in learning.
Test #5 for slow systems--Further Ideas for those using a computer lab, a cybercafe, or a dial-up system
Whether your system is slow or fast usually depends upon when you are accessing the internet. Make yourself a chart (as shown below) noting the seconds required for Test #1 at various times and days when you come to use the computer. Do this for five different occasions. What day of the week and time of day is best for Wandika? Which is worst?
|conditions in computer lab||day of week||time of day||seconds for full display|
From Wandika's data, you can see that she can more easily do her studies online at any time when the computer lab is not 80% or more filled. When Wandika went to a computer cafe next to her home, she discovered that the time for full display was always under 6 seconds. Thus she knew she had an alternative to fall back on in cases of emergency.