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Sample Lesson Experience the "look" and "feel" of RioLearn by checking out this sample PSY101 lesson. All information and coursework provided in this lesson has been chosen to show only the general structure, content style, and format of the course. Along with the basics, you can view a sampling of the course Modules, intended to show various features such as "flashcards" and other media enhancements.

Course Introduction
Getting Started: How to Be Successful in PSY101

Introduction: Connecting Your Learning

Welcome to the study of psychology! This online course will introduce you to the methods of science and critical thinking and how they are applied to the study of psychology. This course does not have a textbook. All of the content is provided for you in the lessons.

This is a mini-lesson on how to be successful in this course. You must complete the two five point assessments at the end of this lesson before you can gain access to the lessons and assessments. The assessment includes content learned in this mini-lesson. The links to these first two assignments are at the bottom of this page. It is important that you submit them right away so that you do not risk being automatically withdrawn from the course as a "no show."

Strategies for Success

Students have busy lives! In addition to taking this course, you may be enrolled in several courses, attending more than one institution of higher learning, have family obligations, and employment responsibilities. To gain the tools, skills, and knowledge you seek, let us prepare you for a successful learning experience.

First, you must take a great deal of self-responsibility for your own learning. You will need to read extensively and thoughtfully, making sure that you clearly understand what you need to know and do. Your success greatly depends on you – if you believe you have control over your success, plan for success, and follow through on your plans, you will significantly increase the chances of doing well in this course.

Second, you are expected to complete all required assignments. You will not be given a passing grade for the course if you do not complete all of the required assignments. Be certain to read your Instructor's Announcement to learn what else is expected of you in the course.

Third, you should follow a schedule that allows you to accomplish your work on time, and you should align your schedule with the course calendar. Procrastination is the greatest problem in independent study courses. As self-motivated as you try to be, it can sometimes be difficult to stick to a schedule throughout a semester. However, consistent effort is the only way to achieve your goals in the course. You should create a Time Management Calendar that identifies what must be done in this course and when you plan to do it. See the outline below for successful strategies.

Fourth, you should log into the course frequently. Studies show that students who log in more than once a week are more likely to be successful in the course.

Planning For Success

  • Effectively plan and manage your time.
  • Balance your various responsibilities.
  • Read your entire course syllabus so you will know what is expected of you.
  • Plan to spend approximately 7-9 hours of study time per Lesson. Divide the time into short intervals rather than lengthier periods of time.
  • Complete all the practice activities in the course to reinforce knowledge.

Preparation for the course

  • Get into the habit of looking at your calendar daily, particularly if you are enrolled in more than one course, and have multiple responsibilities.
  • Block out enough studying and writing time in your schedule.
  • Project a date and time for studying and completing assignments.
  • Determine what learning environment is best for you.
  • It is very important that you stick to your study schedule!

Answering Essay Questions

The essay question(s) are designed to help you deepen your understanding of the material in the course and develop your communication/composition skills and your abilities to organize and think. You will be expected to use your own words and cite content appropriately. For each essay question use the following steps:

  • Identify the question you are answering and work toward answering all the specific parts of the question.
  • Make a list of what you already know about the answer.
  • Review the segments in the lesson applicable to the question
  • Organize your notes - What do you want to say in your answer?
  • Outline your answer - What are the key topics?
  • Write a "Rough Draft" of your answer and review it.
  • Write your final draft and read it over one last time before submitting it to your instructor. Check for spelling, grammar and clarity.
  • All paragraphs that are well written contain one main idea each. Paragraphs should flow in a coherent and logical manner.

Preparation for the exams

As stated above, this course does not have a textbook. All of the content is in your lessons.

  • There are 4 exams in this course. This is designed to assess you on smaller amounts of content at a time instead of the traditional midterm and final exams.
  • Each exam has two parts:
    • Part 1 - objective assessments, timed, 60 minutes.
    • Part 2 - subjective assessments, not timed.
  • If you are not comfortable learning without a textbook, please take notes.
  • You are allowed to use your course resources for the exams.

Potential Barriers to Academic Success

Unfortunately, when students do not feel confident in their skills, or they do not effectively manage their time and complex life schedules, they may feel rushed. This could lead to the temptation to take short cuts and potentially, academic misconduct.

Academic Misconduct

Academic Misconduct includes cheating, conspiring to cheat, soliciting to cheat, attempting to cheat, plagiarism, fabrication on an assignment, or other forms of dishonest presentation. Posting assessments on an unauthorized web site, soliciting assessment answers and the unauthorized acquisition of assessments, assessment answers, or other academic material is cheating.

Plagiarism includes, but is not limited to, the use of paraphrase or direct quotation of the published or unpublished work of another person without full and clear acknowledgment. It also includes the unacknowledged use of materials prepared by another person or agency engaged in the selling or sharing of term papers or other academic materials. Information gathered from the Internet and not properly identified is also considered plagiarism.

We expect every student to produce his/her original, independent work. Any student whose work indicates a violation of the MCCCD Academic Misconduct Policy (including cheating and plagiarism) can expect sanctions as specified in the college catalog.

Rio Salado College uses software that uncovers plagiarism from student to student and other data sources on the Internet. If a student is found to have plagiarized content, grade consequences will be applied in accordance with departmental policies

How to Cite Your Sources

According to the online resource Purdue OWL (Online Writing Lab), review the strategies below for in-text citing to prevent plagiarism.

Rio Salado's Library: For more information on citing appropriately visit the virtual library, the Tempe library, contact a librarian at 480-517-8424, or go to their site to chat online, 24/7.

Assessing Your Learning

  • Syllabus Acknowledgment (5 points)
  • Complete the Syllabus Acknowledgment. You are required to complete this assignment before you can access any other assignments.
  • Submit the Syllabus Acknowledgment.
  • Getting Started Quiz (5 points)
  • Submit the Getting Started Quiz

Assessing Your Learning is where your coursework is submitted to your instructor.