Notes for Instructors
Updated Interactive Tests
The most up-to-date information is in the revisions file. We urge you to become familiar with the information contained there.
In the last full revision of the materials there were changes in the interactive tests. The test questions are now worth two points, but wrong answers or skipped questions each subtract a point form final test scores.
In addition to being at the end of the modules, the new tests are in the restricted instructor's section of the site in the .RTF format which can be used in Microsoft Word or any standard word processor. There is also html version that can be immediately viewed in a browser.
The interactive tests are not "a piece of cake"; they require a comprehensive understanding of the modules. Based on personal experience, they are an indicator of motivation and what we might call "professional perception." Both are indicators of probable success in a competitive field such as broadcasting.
These modules are now available at two independently located U.S. sites: (Let your students know that if there is a problem with one link, one of the others will be available.)
Extensive support materials are available by with evidence that you are an instructor.
A Note On Testing
Before we go any further, we need to mention something we're often asked about.
For several years we had a system of being able to automatically grade and send test results directly to instructors and students.
A great idea in theory.
However, after some sad instances of Internet and other types of failure, including a case where an entire class lost the results of a major test due to a system glitch -- you definitely don't want to face a class after that happens! -- we felt it necessary to revert to more secure systems.
There are, of course, approaches to sending the graded interactive test results by e-mail.
Mac/Apple users you can use Safari and go to File, and Mail Contents of this Page, and then fill in the instructor's e-mail address. Students can add their own e-mail address so they will have a record of the results.
Windows users have a similar option with various browsers.
Because e-mail programs change, this procedure should be checked at your facility before alerting students to the option. However, keep in mind that by using these techniques, it may be possible for some students to edit the results. (I even had one computer savvy student who could change the results of his tests within a commercial testing program -- until I caught on.)
In a computer lab or classroom a teacher assigned numerical code can be entered at the top of test (there is a place for it) which, along with the student's name, identifies the student. There is added information on this in the section reserved for instructors, which you can access by writing e-mail to the site and verifying you are an instructor.
Certificate of Completion
People have requested a Certificate of Completion that could be signed by the instructor and given out to students who successfully complete the course. ("Successful" as defined by the instructor before the class starts.)
The full 8 1/2 X 11 certificate (without the "sample" designation) is in the GIF format and can be downloaded from the instructor's section.
The forum is meant to be controversial! In my college classroom these letters sparked heated debate -- and a chance for me to insist that comments include facts from credible sources and not just unsupported opinions. This is an essential talent for developing a respected role in the mass media where credibility is king!
You are encouraged to recommend needed changes on the site. We'll all benefit from your input. (And we definitely appreciate the many suggestions we've gotten.)
syllabus for a TV production course should also be of value. This information may be helpful in setting up
video evaluation procedures. Various assignments are associated with
these materials, including this scriptwriting
assignment and this thought-provoking
The film, radio, TV, Internet, book, and newspaper sections in the mass media course can provide added depth to these materials. As with the TV production materials, the mass media materials are free for nonprofit use. Important copyright information is discussed here and here.
Always Something New
These cybertexts are, and probably always will be, a work in progress. Nothing related to a dynamic, rapidly changing field like mass communications can afford to stand still. Having published texts in the area, I know that the moment they are published, they are in some ways already out of date.
The form of this cybertext has a number of advantages.
* Although this text is free, there's one string attached.
If these materials are used in developing a career in television production, students need to "pay" for the material by at least once producing something to aid people or conditions in the world.
Need some ideas? Consider this.
If a student uses the cybertext and doesn't go into the field professionally, here is the "price."
A textbook of this type would cost at least $50 (probably much more, if it had 800 or so color illustrations). Assuming that personal time is worth $25 an hour, the student should devote at least two hours to doing something positive and totally selfless for some person or agency.
That's it. The text is paid for, and there should be no guilty conscience for using it.
At this point I've received many messages telling me how students have "paid" for the cybertext. I appreciate these letters...and I assume that many have benefited as a result of these student actions.
Ron Whittaker, Ph.D.
Copyright Notice: You as an individual are free to use the materials directly from the CyberCollege® or InternetCampus® sites. The English, Spanish and Portuguese modules and illustrations are protected by U.S. and international copyright law and may not be reproduced in any other form.
To print them out for distribution, or to reproduce them in any other form, or distribute them from any other location, is a violation of copyright.