Frequently Asked Questions
Is the course safe?
The courses are taught using Moodle. Moodle is a platform commonly used in middle schools and high schools for online courses or hybrid courses. It is secure. Only registered students will have access to the site. Students will be given a “key” to gain entrance to their course.
Are the teachers certified?
Yes. Teachers who teach for CLC Network are certified by the State of Michigan to teach the course(s) they are assigned. In the case of online courses, the teachers are experienced online teachers.
Is the course completed entirely online?
Our online courses are taught entirely online. Because our students come from a rather large geographic area, we cannot reliably bring students together for face-to-face instruction.
Our online courses are taught asynchronously. This means that students can work on the course assignments at times of their choosing. They do not need to be online when the instructor or other students are online. Class discussion, which is an important part of the learning process, occurs through the online discussion board, wiki, blog and via email. These types of discussions can be done at times of the students’ choosing.
How many students typically enroll in a course?
Our classes are small. We anticipate groups of five to 15 in our classes. Most students live in West Michigan; however, we have had students from other states and countries take our courses. We look forward to the long-distance interactions and connections that can be made among students from Christian schools and homes around the country and the world.
Does this course give high school credit?
Our online courses do not offer high school credit. They will likely replace a high school course.
When does the student work on this course?
Online courses are intended to replace courses of the same, or similar, name in the school or home school curriculum. Therefore, students who take online courses should be excused from the course replaced by the online course.
For example, if the student would normally take eighth grade English during fourth hour, she/he would be excused from the fourth hour English course. Then, during fourth hour the student will work on her/his Online English course. It is recommended that the student work in an alternate location, such as the media center; however, some students have worked in the back of their classroom while their typical class met. Home school students and parents can choose their own arrangements for integration of online courses.
How do I know what my student is working on?
This might be somewhat challenging, since there is less of a typical paper trail with our online courses than what might be true for a face-to-face course. Though your student’s instructor will provide regular feedback, there are several additional ways to keep up with your student’s work:
- Ask your daughter or son to print out an example of a recent assignment/task, including the instructor’s feedback/grade.
- Ask your daughter or son to print out a copy of the current “gradebook,” which will provide an up-to-date look at grades for the course.
- Ask your daughter or son to give you a tour of the online course site.
- Compare the projected course “curriculum map” topics with the current date and ask to see a sample of work.
- Contact the course instructor for feedback about your student’s performance.
Can a student work at their own pace?
Since our courses are teacher-led, they cannot be done entirely at one’s own pace. While working within a unit of study, a student has control over how rapidly she/he works through the tasks of the unit; however, the unit will be completed at a time similar to the rest of the students in the course. It isn’t possible for a student to complete a semester of study in a matter of a few weeks even if they work fast.
Will the course have much homework?
The courses will be challenging. We design our courses with students in mind, however. We prepare our middle school courses to provide a unique academic challenge to students seeking just such a thing. In all courses, it is reasonable to expect several hours of homework each week.
What skills should the student have?
Student should be able to:
Plan school studies independently (for example, prepare for a test by himself or herself)
Start his/her studies without extra encouragement from parents or teachers
Effectively plan and follow through on plans
Finish school tasks on time
Finish school tasks without significant encouragement from adults
Self-motivate to “do” school
Take care of his/her “stuff” independently
Student should be:
Comfortable working with a computer
Able to work independently with a computer
Able to print documents from a computer
Able to write and send email
Experienced with attaching documents to an email
Able to upload documents when needed
Able to navigate the Internet with confidence
Able to work with Microsoft Office, Word and PowerPoint?
Willing to learn to communicate using discussion boards, blogs and wiki’s?
What kind of computer set up is required for this course?
The student should have access to high speed internet. This access should be at a DSL or cable modem connection speed. Dial-up service is inadequate for online courses.
Students do not need a laptop to take the course. They will need access to the Internet during the school day and at home, however. Therefore, most students do use a laptop for the convenience and for the guaranteed computer access afforded by the laptop.
Students should have a way to save school work between home and school, whether it be via a flash drive, Google Drive, Dropbox or a similar service. It is critical that students save their work frequently.
What are the technical requirements to participate?
General System Requirements
- Modern browser (Internet Explorer 9, Google Chrome, Safari, or Firefox)
- An internet connection at least 1.5Mbps or faster (test Internet speed)
- Speakers or headphones
Moodle Learning Management Requirements
CLC Network primarily utilizes the Moodle Learning Management System. This system has unique setup requirements that allow students to work more efficiently and with fewer system errors.
Technologies Not Supported
The following technologies are not supported, though they may have been supported in previous versions of Moodle:
- Internet Explorer 6, 7
- Firefox 1.x, 2.0, 3.0 and 3.5
- Safari 2.0, 3.0, 3.1, 3.2 and any version on Windows
- Mac OSX 10.3, 10.4 “Tiger”
- Java 5, although it may continue to work