Workload and General Guidelines

Studying This Course

This is a graduate course aimed primarily at people working in the postsecondary education system. We therefore expect you to be able to seek out, analyze, and evaluate information for yourself, and to be able to draw critically on your own experience and reflect on that in the light of the material presented in this course.

We also expect you to share your findings, your perspectives and your experiences with each other through the group work and the online discussion activities. We hope that by doing this we will all be able to learn from each other.


Although we will provide you with as much help as we can, do not expect this to be an easy course. You should budget an average of between eight to twelve hours a week for study; some of you will need even longer, depending how actively you participate in the discussions and the amount of independent research you do on the issues. Twelve hours a week should allow you to cover the course thoroughly. You may of course not have this much time to spare, but you should be able to cover the minimum required within eight to ten hours a week.

Whether or not English is your first language, you will need to be very skilled in reading quickly and selectively, and in writing clearly and succinctly, in English.

You will be asked to think for yourself, to make difficult choices, to work collaboratively with other students, and to have your ideas and views criticized publicly by others. You will be asked to do a lot of work on your own. In particular, you will be asked to find out information for yourself, to analyze the information, and to make decisions based on your analysis.


There are three assignments in this course. These are explained in detail in the Assignments section. Click on the Assignments menu tab.

General Guidelines for Studying this Course

  1. Read those readings designated recommended. You should only read the additional readings if you are interested in pursuing a particular topic in more depth. You do not need to read the additional readings to successfully complete the course.
  2. Participate regularly and actively in the discussion forums. You will receive instructions about the current discussions from your instructor. Make sure you read the Discussion Forum Guidelines later in this section.
  3. Leave yourself enough time to do the assignments. There are three challenging assignments in this course, so don’t delay getting started. Don’t be afraid to use the discussion forums or email to contact your instructor or other students to test ideas, ask questions, seek other Web sites, etc. We strongly encourage collaboration in this course.