Frequently Asked Questions
General Access Questions
- What if I am unable to sign in using my registered sign-in information and password that I created?
If you used an active email account you can request a “reset of your password” on the sign-in page. The Open University will send you an updated password to the email account you registered with. This may take up to 24 hours. If your email account is no longer active, you will need to re-activate your email account to retrieve the reset password. You can also email firstname.lastname@example.org to request additional assistance.
- If I register for one class first (i.e., Succeed with Math), does that allow me full access to the other course when I sign in?
Once you have registered under either course title using an email address and your password, you are registered in the Open University learning management system where the two courses exist. After accessing the course you wish to use, click on “Sign In” and enter your email address username and the password you created.
- Will the private information I use for registration be used for other purposes, and is my privacy protected?
Registration is an easy process and there are privacy controls included. You can indicate during registration how much information you want to receive in the future and how much information you want the Bridge to Success project to have access to. These preferences can be changed under your profile – click your name when signed in to access your profile.
- Do I have to register to use the course material?
The course material is free and open to anyone linking to the course material through the Open University LabSpace. Registering is not a requirement to use the material, but it does allow access to all content and resources within the course material.
- What are the benefits of registering and creating a username with a password?
The email address is used as your username and you create a private password. Being registered allows you 100% access to all of the tools and activities within each of the courses. For example, you must be registered to access the pre and post math quizzes in Succeed with Math. You will also not be able to track your own personal progress through the “My Activity Record” feature if you are not registered.
- What is the best way to move through each course unit?
Each course begins with a main page that includes the units and their titles. In addition the main page provides toolkit information and ideas, learning tools, and additional educational resources to support your review of the course material.
- It is recommended that you start the learning process by completing the Self-Reflection Questionnaire.
- When you finish using the material complete the “Please Tell Us What You Thought About the Course” questionnaire in Unit 11 (“Communicating with Data, Charts, and Graphs”) for Succeed with Math and in Unit 5 (“Reflecting Backward, Reflecting Forward”) for Learning to Learn.
- The courses were created in a linear format to create a solid foundation as you progress through all of the material to build your critical thinking skills, and reduce anxiety in mathematics and learning concepts.
- When you are ready to start the units, click on the Unit 1 title and complete Unit 1. This provides a broad overview of the courses and gives you hints and tips to take full advantage of every learning opportunity provided in the course content.
- Once you open a unit you will find the index of each unit on the left column of the page.
- The index provides a title providing you guidance as to what learning content exists within that section.
- At the end of each page you will find a highlighted link entitled “Next” and the title of the next page. Click on this link and it takes you to the next page. You can also go to the index and click on the link in the index.
- If you need to go back to a section or return to the main page showing all of the units, you can use the link in the index, use the back button on the computer, or go to the top of the page in the highlighted blue section and click on the title of the course (either “Succeed_with_Math_v2_1.0” or “Learning_to_Learning_v2_1.0”).
- If you find yourself no longer within the Bridge to Success learning space, you will need to return to the Bridge to Success website (http://bridge2success.aacc.edu) or the direct link to the course and sign-in to start where you left off.
(Succeed with Math: http://labspace.open.ac.uk/course/view.php?id=8318)
(Learning to Learn: http://labspace.open.ac.uk/course/view.php?id=8208)
- Are there hints and tips for each of the courses?
On the main index page of each course you will find a Toolkit section in the lower left column. Within this section you will find a Student Toolkit in “How to Get the Most from this Course,” the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs), and “What Do You Think of the Course?” In addition, learning tools and related educational resources are located in the right column of the main page.
- Is this absolutely free?
Bridge to Success provides these two open and free educational resources for anyone’s use, as well as an additional online math anxiety learning tool, “Overcoming Math Anxiety.” Succeed with Math and Learning to Learn are maintained within The Open University’s learning management system for free accessibility; Overcoming Math Anxiety is available through the Bridge to Success website (http://bridge2success.aacc.edu). The Open University has historically provided open and free educational courses for many years and the Bridge to Success project is committed to the sustainability of the two courses provided in a free and open environment.
- Can I use the material over and over again?
You can use these open educational resources (OERs) at anytime and for as long you would like. The advantage to the Bridge to Success content is that when you sign in, the system automatically keeps a record of what you have completed and you can maintain notes within the course (through learning journals or learning clubs) to provide you hints and tips for future study. In addition, you can also share the course links with friends and family by clicking on “send link” in the lower left column of the main page of each course.
- How do I go back to a section I may have an interest in reviewing?
You can maintain notes on sections you wish to review either through a separate learning journal, or by making an entry in the course’s learning journal (located in the right column of the main page). Go to the unit that the section is located from the main page of the course, and then click on the link in the left column index of that unit.
- What do I do if I find myself no longer in the Bridge to Success course material section and find myself in The Open University’s general access space?
You can find yourself “bumped” out of the course you are working on by “unknowingly” clicking into The Open University’s general LabSpace, where more than 3000 courses are maintained. Typing in “B2S” into the “Search units” box will return a list of the two Bridge to Success courses, or alternately you can return to the Bridge to Success website (http://bridge2success.aacc.edu) where you originally accessed the course.
In addition, users have typically found themselves bumped out of the courses after completing the questionnaires at the beginning of each course. To avoid this after completing the opening questionnaire, be careful to click on “Back to the course” button to be returned to the main page of the course.
- Do I have to be enrolled in a formal class to continue using Succeed with Math and Learning to Learn content?
No, you do not need to be connected to any formal learning program, school, or activity. Anyone at any age can access these materials and use them to build their learning strategies and math skills. The amount of comprehension will depend upon the skills of the user. The course material is prepared in such a way to assist learners at all levels who have been provided some of the basic reading, writing, and mathematics skills.
- Do I have to complete the questionnaire posted at the beginning and the questionnaire posted at the end of Succeed with Math and Learning to Learn?
The questionnaires are optional and should only be completed by those who are of legal age defined by their country of origin. Some individuals may be participating in a formalized learning environment and the questionnaires may then be required. The questionnaires do provide you, the learner, an opportunity to evaluate yourself at the start of the material and then to assess how you may have grown by completing the closing questionnaire. The Bridge to Success project is working to maintain the best possible learning resources and the responses to the questionnaires provides guidance as to how to improve the course material and make it the most useful for all users.
- Why are there questionnaires? Are they important for me to spend anytime answering?
The questionnaires do provide you, the learner, an opportunity to evaluate yourself at the start of the material and then to assess how you may have grown by completing the closing questionnaire. The Bridge to Success project is working to maintain the best possible learning resources and the responses to the questionnaires provides guidance as to how to improve the course material and make it the most useful for all users.
- If I want more information on these topics, is there someone I can contact for assistance?
You can send all requests for assistance and further information to email@example.com (please allow 24 hours for a response), or visit the website (http://bridge2success.aacc.edu) and refer to the “Contact Us” section.
- Can I provide the information and have friends, family, fellow students, and colleagues use the course material?
This is an open educational resource and is published under a creative common license, and is open to anyone with an Internet connection. You do not need to seek permission to utilize the material and can re-use any portion of the learning material and share openly with others.
- What if I change my email address—can I change my sign-in email address for future sign in efforts?
You will need to sign in and create a new user account with the new email address. The LabSpace will not know that you have changed your email address, so it may not be necessary to change your username (old email address). The only time having an inactive email address as your username can negatively affect you is if you request sign in assistance by requesting a new password—the password would be mailed to your inactive email account.
Once you create a new username account it will not transfer your previous loaded information and your activity record will not be transferred to the new username account.
- What if I don’t remember where I left off when working within each course?
There is a tracking mechanism within each course. “My Activity Record” can be found in the right column under “Learning Tools” within each course. You must be signed in as a registered user to access this function, and for the courses to track your progress.
- Why are the classes found within The Open University’s learning management system?
The Open University is one of four partners who developed the Bridge to Success project. The Open University is an international leader in developing, promoting and hosting open educational resources and hosts the courses in their learning management system. It has provided free and open educational resources for more than 30 years and this experience promotes the sustainability of the Bridge to Success course content.
- Can I use other classes in The Open University’s system? How do I do that?
You can access any of The Open University’s open educational resources by accessing LabSpace and reviewing their offerings. At the top of any of the pages in the Bridge to Success course content there is a link to “LabSpace.”
- Is there a way to use the course material if I am not online?
A printable version is available for each course unit. You can find the link in the bottom of the left column in any course unit.
- What if I don’t finish the unit? What happens?
Any unit you have accessed will be tracked if you are signed in. You can go to “My Activity Record” when you return to the unit, as long as you sign in using your username and password, and see what pages of what units you have already reviewed. Any section of any course is always available to you, whether you are signed or not. There are small sections and course resources within the units that will not be available if you do not sign in using your email username (i.e., questionnaires, pre and post math quizzes, learning tools).
- Who developed the course materials?
The original material was developed at The Open University in the United Kingdom. The Bridge to Success project has employed faculty who are content experts to convert and “Americanize” the content to align more closely with practices and standards in the United States. The Bridge to Success partners include Anne Arundel Community College (AACC), Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), the University of Maryland University College (UMUC), and The Open University (OU).
Succeed with Math Questions
- Does this math course have tests?
There are no traditional math tests in the course; however, there are important self-check exercises throughout the units and quizzes at the end of each unit. You are allowed to retake the quizzes as many times as necessary to feel confident that you have mastered the unit material.
- Will I get a grade in this course? Can I get college math credit for taking this math class?
This is not a credit-level college math course. The Succeed with Math course is designed to help you prepare for high school equivalency testing and entry to math courses taught in college. You will not get a grade for Succeed with Math. The most valuable aspect of participating in this math course is the path that it represents—an important step towards success in mathematics.
If you are utilizing the course material through a formalized course or school, the facilitator may ask you to submit the responses to the exercises and activities as part of a graded assignment.
- What do I do if I continue to do poorly on the quizzes found at the end of each of the math units?
If you continue to have difficulty with the quizzes after you have reviewed the material, it is recommended you seek assistance from a tutor, instructor, or friend who can review those math concepts with you. It may be a learning style issue and you are not connecting with the way the math material is presented. You can email firstname.lastname@example.org and request additional assistance and additional resources may be provided.
- Do I need to take the pre quizzes before each unit, and the post quizzes at the end of each unit?
The quizzes are optional. They are good tools for you to evaluate yourself and are recommended to help you focus on the areas you need specific help and to build your math confidence. They are also a good practice to prepare for traditional classroom quizzes and tests.
- Is there a calculator available that I can open right on the computer screen? How do I keep it open to use while I am working through the math content?
A calculator is available once you open any unit with Succeed with Math. It is a Web2.0C calculator and can be left open while working on any page within any unit. You can move the calculator around your page by clicking on the top blue portion of the calculator with your mouse pointer. There is also a traditional minimize and maximize feature available.
Learning to Learn Questions
- Does it really take all of the time indicated to read through and complete the recommended exercises and activities in each learning unit?
The course developers have projected an overall estimated time that it would take to complete every page of every unit and spending the recommended time to complete each learning activity. Each person has different skills and abilities, so you may move through the material at a different pace than the average person.
- Does this course provide me an opportunity to improve my reading and writing skills?
Both the Learning to Learn and Succeed with Math courses provide an opportunity to practice your reading, writing and critical thinking skills. The learning activities provide an opportunity to practice your traditional writing skills as well as your ability to communicate math concepts in written form. The course content is intended to provide you an opportunity to assess your skills in these areas and to practice the skills you would like to improve.
- What are the “Challenges” in Learning to Learn?
Challenges (or challenge activities) are provided so you can demonstrate what you have learned from studying or participating in the course content. Throughout Learning to Learn you will be introduced to eight “challenges.” You will learn about what is involved in completing each challenge and about how you might sue the evidence of your achievement to demonstrate to others and to yourself the skills and knowledge that you gained.
- What are the benefits of completing the “challenge” activities?
- allow you to demonstrate to yourself and others the skills and knowledge gained through the course content
- allow you to gain recognition for skills you developed through the course
- provide an opportunity for you to experience virtual learning and building independent learning skills and strategies
- provide (when combined with journaling) the building blocks to individual skill development and achievement
- provide the bridge between creating critical analysis and evidence in the future that you are building your skills and knowledge
- provide a record of activity that can lead to your portfolio development
- are a motivator to reflect on your own learning and educational goals and achievements
- can be taken over if you are not satisfied with your results or answers provided up until you click affirmatively to the “close the attempt” option—once you click OK to “closing the attempt” option, you will no longer be able to change your answers.
- Are the challenges a required activity?
No. You may choose not to complete any challenges, or just to complete a few challenges related to your own interests. However, we hope that you will complete as many challenges as possible, because they will help you to consolidate your learning. They will also give you recognition for the skills and knowledge that you’ve developed since starting Learning to Learn.
- Do I have to complete the challenges in order?
No, although many of the challenges draw on knowledge and skills gained in particular units; it is highly recommended that you don’t attempt a challenge until you are prompted to do so. However, you may choose to wait until later in the course to complete a particular challenge. (You can return to the challenge pages at any time.)
- How will I know which of the activities in the course will contribute towards completing a challenge?
If an activity is an essential element of a challenge, you will see the logo for that challenge alongside the activity.
- Will I have proof or be able to track the challenges I completed?
Yes. Each challenge you complete will appear on your Activity Record for the course. You will also be able to download and save the evidence created for each challenge (e.g. a CV or your completed Action Plan). Every challenge that you complete will add to a portfolio of evidence demonstrating your skills and knowledge.
- What do I do if I have technical difficulties and the courses do not appear after I click on the web location of the classes?
These types of access problems are usually very brief, so it is recommended you try accessing the course content an hour later. If access difficulties continue to exist send an email to email@example.com. Every effort will be made to resolve the issue within 24 hours.
- What do I do if I don’t have sound on my computer or if I am in a room or library with a group of people and there are no headsets available to listen to the videos and other broadcast content?
The majority of the videos have transcripts available. The word “Transcript” is written below the video and is accessible by clicking on the word to read what is presented in the video.
- How do I move from one lesson to the next?
At the bottom of each page of each unit you will find a highlighted phrasing started with “Next” and the title of the next page of the unit. Click on this and it moves you to the next page of the unit. You can also use the course index found on the left column within each unit to move from one section to another. Each unit section is numbered in the left column and it always takes you to the first page of the unit selected.
- If I think there is a mistake in the material, how can I suggest it be fixed?
You can enter your suggestion in the Toolkit section on the left column of each course unit under “What Do You Think of the Course?” You can also send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and provide a description of the suggestion.
- Does the course material meet the American with Disabilities Act requirements for online course material?
The course content has been reviewed and meets the guidelines of the American with Disabilities Act. If you have a suggestion or have a concern with accessibility please post in the “What Do You Think of the Course?” section found in the Toolkit section, or send an email to email@example.com. The Bridge to Success project will make every effort to provide appropriate accessibility for each course.
- Do I have to go through the Bridge to Success website every time I want to access Succeed with Math and/or Learning to Learn?
You do not have to use the website for access. You can copy and paste the URL address of the course content once you gain access for the first time.
- What do I do if popup windows are in the way of the learning material on the computer screen?
When opening transcripts or other learning materials that reveal popup windows, they can be moved anywhere on the computer screen or to one side. To switch back to the popup window, press the “Alt” and “Tab” keys together. To resize the popup window, move your mouse pointer to the bottom right corner of the popup window, click and hold the left mouse button, and adjust the size of the popup window. To move the popup window, click and hold the left mouse button in the top blue section of the popup window and move the popup window to the location of your choosing on the computer screen.
- Are the two courses mobile and accessible through other technical means beyond a computer?
There is an option to create a printable version of any unit or an entire course. A DVD version is in development, and when available will be announced in the Bridge to Success website (http://bridge2success.aacc.edu).
- Can I repeat the challenge activities in Learning to Learn and the quizzes in Succeed with Math?
You can repeat either of these activities up until the point you indicate and respond affirmatively that you are ready to “close the attempt.” Once you click “OK” to close the challenge activity or quiz attempt, you will no longer be able to change your answers under your registered email address.
- Can I have the Learning Journal open on the same page with the course content visible?
You can have two items open at one time. For example, if you want to write an entry in your Learning Journal, but still want access to your Learning to Learn course to assist in creating your response, you resize the Learning Journal as a popup window. When you open the link to the Learning Journal or any activity, you should use “Ctrl” key and use a mouse click. In the upper right corner of the new window (Journal or activity), minimize the screen. Point your mouse to the newly opened tab and hold down and slide the new popup window into the open space selected on your computer screen. You can then resize your popup window appropriately so that you can type your response directly into the Journal or activity window, while the course content is available on the same screen.
Best Learning Practices
- Is there a location to create and save my responses to exercises, questions, challenge activities, and suggested content activities in Succeed with Math and Learning to Learn?
Once you have signed in you have full access to the Learning Tools found in the right column of the course content. Learning Journals are accessible for you to enter your responses to content activities, and can be saved to retrieve at a later date. The Learning Journal can be opened alongside the course content on your computer screen by holding the “Ctrl” key and clicking the Learning Journal link.
- How can I find a specific topic that I want to learn about, without having to read every page of every class?
After opening each unit you will find an index of the course topics in the left column.
- What if I don't have time to go through every page, every unit and every activity - what is the recommended way to get the most out of each course?
In the Toolkit section of each course you will find “How to Get the Most from this Course.” This will provide you recommendations to get the most out of using the course content. In addition the unit index provides an outline of the key topics found within each unit. In Succeed with Math there are pre quizzes in Units 2–8, and those results can help you focus on your key math areas. The post quizzes in Units 1–8 also give you an opportunity to determine if there are sections you may need to review to strengthen identified math skills.
- Is it important that I review the material in the order the units are presented?
The course material is presented in a recommended order to help build your skills, and provides a solid foundation to lead to the next unit. The course content is open therefore provides the flexibility for you to progress as you see fit to meet your learning needs.
- How much time should I spend on each lesson or activity?
The course developers provide a recommended time for each learning activity to meet the needs of an average learner. The great thing about these resources is you have the flexibility to determine your own pace and you may take less or more time than the recommended time. The key is taking the time necessary to challenge yourself and build on your skills.
- Are the reference sections important at the end of each learning unit?
The reference sections are titled “Acknowledgements.” Depending upon your needs, these references may be useful to provide for an academic paper or presentation.
- Is it helpful to work on both Succeed with Math and Learning to Learn, even if my first intention was to only work with one of the courses?
Both courses provide a solid foundation upon which to build your skills. Reviewing math skills can always be helpful as math skills are used daily. Those who have already used the content have found both courses to be useful in building their critical thinking skills and believe the resources have added value to their learning experiences.
- Do I receive grades or feedback for any of the quizzes or exercises that I complete?
There are no grades provided, but you can receive feedback by participating in the learning group (user-managed group feature) tool available in the courses. You may be asked to formally participate in a learning group through a particular course or activity in which you are enrolled. In addition, if you are using the course content through a formalized program with a tutor, facilitator or instructor, they will notify you if they have access to your scores, challenge responses, or exercises as a course requirement. This information is only used as a guide for them to provide you the resources you need to take advantage of every learning opportunity provided by the Bridge to Success course content.
- Can others see or track my work or progress through the course units?
If you are participating in a formal learning experience, a tutor, facilitator or instructor may have access to your activity record, challenge activity responses, and quiz results. You will be notified in advance if access is available to another person. They will not have access to your username or password. You may also be asked to participate in a learning group (user-managed group feature) and this provides you an opportunity to exchange ideas and learning results with your tutor, facilitator, or instructor and other course participants. User directions for user-managed groups (i.e., learning groups) will be available within the Succeed with Math and Learning to Learn course content.
- What if I need more help to answer an exercise, activity or assignment?
If you are in a formal learning experience, you can contact your tutor, facilitator or instructor for assistance. If you are accessing the material on your own, email firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance.
- How can I exchange ideas with other students and/or facilitators and instructors?
A Learning Group tool is available through a user-managed group feature available within the Succeed with Math and Learning to Learn course content. You can interact in user-managed groups or you can participate in worldwide communication opportunities by accessing posted user managed groups within each course.
- Can I create and/or participate in discussions within these courses?
You can create a discussion or participate in an already posted discussion through the user-managed groups.
- What materials do I need for these courses? Are there textbooks?
There are no textbooks to purchase; all of the course content that you will need is in the LabSpace. You can enter information, responses or other posts through the Learning Journal function within Succeed with Math and Learning to Learn. It may be helpful to have a notebook, plenty of pencils and paper, and a positive, enthusiastic attitude. The type of notebook you use is up to you. There is an online calculator available in LabSpace. Some students may prefer to have their own desktop calculator rather than use the online one—it is up to you.
- How should I set up my math notebook, or learning journal?
Keeping all of your own notes from these courses in one place can be a big help. For example, to learn math, you need to try problems on your own and write things down. Prepare a notebook in which you can keep all the math notes you create. It can be a bound or spiral notebook, or even a binder. Use it when you do a math activity or a problem in the self-check section. In addition, consider taking a few notes from the screens that explain a concept that is new to you or that you previously found unclear.
It is also a good idea to have a section set aside in your notebook in which you can write down any new terminology you run across, and its definition. Think of it as a vocabulary section. Looking back at the definition of a word can clarify a task or an explanation. There may be a glossary that you can use by scrolling over a key word, but if you keep these words in your learning journal or notebook, you may actually learn them better and be able to look them up less and less frequently. Some students benefit from keeping a set of index cards with vocabulary words and definitions. You can keep them in a zip lock bag with your notebook.
There is also a section in the course material under “Learning Tools” (right column) that provides a Learning Journal location. You can create your activity responses, challenge responses, and answers to activities and exercises within your Learning Journal.