Taking a Class
What is ITV?
ITV stands for "Instructional Television," and at CSUB you can participate in a "closed-circuit" ITV class. Closed-circuit classes allow enrolled students at remote sites to participate in the class through the television network. These classes can only be seen by those actually enrolled. ITV classes allow on-campus students to take the class in the ITV studio, while simultaneously providing access to distant students.
Will I be on television?
Yes! Courses taken through ITV means that there are television cameras in most locations. In closed-circuit classes, only the students enrolled at other sites will be able to see you. This means that the students at the remote sites can see you and you can see them, which promotes a feeling of involvement with students at other sites. The cameras usually are on the instructor; generally you only will be "on camera" when you talk to the instructor or to others in the class.
How do I talk to my instructor if I am not in the ITV studio?
When you are taking a Closed-Circuit class, then you communicate with the instructor by talking into a microphone. It is necessary to push the "push to talk" button when you are speaking. If the button is not pushed, those at the other sites cannot hear you.
How do I talk to the students at another site during a Closed-Circuit class?
When you want to ask a question or make a comment in class, you have to push the button on the microphone to talk to all of the students in the class, including those at the remote sites. It may seem unnatural at first, and may take awhile to get used to. When you push the button, two things happen--your microphone is turned on so that others can hear you, and the camera automatically focuses on you so that others know who is speaking. When the button is not pushed, the camera swivels to its default position and the microphone is muted. If the microphones were not muted, then every time you coughed, the camera would zoom in on you!
How do I turn in my work?
Good question! Your instructor will let you know what method is preferred. At the remote sites there is a fax machine in each studio so that you can fax your work to your instructor. Secondly, CSUB has a courier service that allows us to send materials to and from the sites. The site assistant is responsible for collecting and sending materials by courier. Thirdly, you can send your assignments via email, most often as an attachment. Fourth, many instructors use the web for communicating with students, and you may be asked to complete assignments in this way. Ultimately, it is up to your instructor how you submit your work.
How are my assignments returned to me?
Again, this is up to the instructor, who will choose one of the methods previously mentioned.
How do I get handouts from the instructor?
Handouts are delivered to you in a couple of ways. We encourage instructors to put their handouts on their website or on the ITV website as a link to the syllabus. Another way you will get handouts, if you are taking a remote class, is via fax. A fax machine/copier is located at each site. The instructor may fax one to your site and your site assistant will copy the handout for each person in class. Lastly, larger handouts are sent via courier/overnight service one to two days before the class. These handouts will be received and distributed by your site assistant.
What if there are technical problems and I can't watch the class?
Unfortunately, when we use technology, problems do occur. It's frustrating when the technology goes down, for you and for our staff! To make sure that you don't miss the class, we record all of our courses and put the video on a two-hour, two-week reserve at the remote locations. For viewing, we have available a combination TV/VCR at each site.
What is different about taking ITV classes?
A couple of things are different when you take a class over ITV. First, you are usually not in the same location as your instructor and it may seem like you're not really in class. In fact, some students at the remote sites have said that they feel like a "stepchild." We are aware of this phenomenon and are working very hard to change that. At first, it also can be a little intimidating when you have to speak into a microphone. However, after a week or so students report that they get used to it. Lastly, you may not have as much face-to-face interaction with the other students in the class. This is why many instructors rely on other means of communication, including e-mail, on-line, and telephone contact.
Why should I take classes over ITV?
That's a good question. There are positive reasons to take a class over ITV. If you live in outlying areas, taking a class over ITV saves you many hours of driving time. The normal commute time to the CSUB campus from outlying areas is two hours -- each way. Without ITV, many students simply would not be able to continue their education.
Who can I contact if I have questions or comments?
Below are names and numbers of the ITV staff. Please feel free to contact anyone at the ITV offices for any reason. We realize that taking classes over ITV can be challenging, and we are constantly trying to improve our processes and delivery methods. We appreciate your thoughts.