Digital Classroom Etiquette

Below you will find helpful tips for continuing your studies remotely. If you have any questions, please contact Academic Affairs (Sinead Foley, sfoleyataup.edu). 

IT Services has also developed a digital resources page with tutorials for all major Office365 applications. 

Before you start
  • Familiarize yourself with the resources, folders, and tools that your professor is using on BlackBoard and/or Microsoft Teams.
  • Prepare your own technology – make sure you have access to your materials on your personal computer, transfer files to an online drive or USB key, scan, copy and upload documents in advance.
  • Acquire any necessary equipment - video and audio equipment is a priority so make sure you have a good headset with a microphone, webcam, charger, mouse, USB key. If you need support, IT Services will be able to help you (itservicesataup.edu).
During Class
  • Make sure you can easily access your learning materials, notes and assignments during class, as well as any resources that your professor provides. Remember to save your work often.
  • Use chat tools to ask questions during class or to signal to your professor if there is a technical issue during the lecture.
  • To reduce background noise, mute your microphone when you are not speaking during a lecture. Likewise, be aware of your surroundings when using a microphone or camera during online lectures.
  • Minimize any online activity that might distract your classmates during the lecture.
After Class
  • Make sure you reach out to your professors via email or chat if you feel you were unable to follow or understand the lecture. While it may be easy to become a more passive learner while sitting behind a screen, you should make the effort to be as active and engaged as possible. Do not hesitate to speak up if you feel something is unclear.
  • Ask your professor how you can participate in office hours by getting in touch via phone, direct messaging or video chat.
  • Remember that both students and faculty are adapting to a new learning environment. If you have suggestions for how your professor can improve their online lecture, please follow up with them directly.

Digital Classroom Etiquette

We all know that sitting behind a computer screen can change the way we interact with the world at large. With that in mind, here are a few tips on how to follow digital classroom etiquette and bring your best self to your online classes.

 

1. COME PREPARED

You would never dream of showing up to class without a notebook and pen, or with an uncharged computer, or without last night’s homework. Your rhythm of leaving your apartment and heading to campus might have changed, but don’t let that change your work ethic. Your professors may be sending you materials and assignments to have on hand during class, so make sure you have everything loaded and ready to go on your computer when class begins. Running to the other room to grab your textbook or charger might mean you miss something important.  

2. BE AWARE OF YOUR SURROUNDINGS 

You will undoubtedly find that your shared apartment has become a kind of home office, with your flatmates camped out on the couch and at every desk, working on group projects, calling their staff mentors, conferencing with professors, and calling home for some much needed support.   

In times like these, the mute button is your best friend. You can reduce background noise for the other people on a call by muting yourself until you need to speak. While you’re at it, you might think about turning off your camera too. You may wish to enjoy the luxury of attending classes while wearing your pajamas, but your professors and classmates don’t need to know that. 

3. STAY ACTIVE AND ENGAGED

As you collectively log in to digital classrooms from your couches, beds and under your blankets, it can be easy to feel disconnected from your fellow classmates as well as the rest of the world. But remember, sometimes the best thing about college classes is connecting with the unique set of people you share that class time with. Staying engaged by asking questions, starting debates, and showing your peers and professors that you care about the material will motivate others around you to do the same. Resist the temptation to browse the internet or turn on a video game. If you struggle to concentrate, take the extra step of creating a quiet workspace that helps you stay in the zone.  

4. COMMUNICATION IS KEY 

In many ways, today’s university students are more prepared than any generation to adapt successfully to online classes. You probably have extensive experience maintaining relationships, seeking support and navigating different platforms from multiple devices. Now is the time to put those skills to use.  

Create group chats to tackle group assignments and support one another. Reach out to an AUP staff member to ask how you can use one of the numerous available resources for this period. If you’re taking part in AUP’s career mentoring program, use the time to ask your mentors how they’re managing their time while they work remotely too.  

5. BE PATIENT

Your first digital class might see a few bumps along the way. Technical difficulties, weak WiFi, or overactive group chats might pose a few problems, but remember that we are all in this together, and you can make a big difference in the success of a class. If you a have trouble hearing your professor’s lecture, use the group chat to signal this to them. Are assignments not clear or are any online materials missing? Speak up! And if you have any helpful advice for your professors, you can reach out to them after class via email to share it with them. 

You can find more information about learning remotely in our online FAQs.