Course Materials: Course materials vary with each course. Each course has a syllabus providing basic information to the student about the course and instructor supplied discussion material, and assignments. Other materials may include textbooks, handbooks, workbooks, video or audio cassettes, lab kits, computer disks, or Internet- accessible materials. Some courses require students to access local resources to facilitate learning. Library materials can be obtained in the student’s locale or through the AU libraries. Once the course materials are approved, DLOT then duplicates the necessary materials, warehouses them, and distributes them to students as needed.
Course Implementation/Operation: Once the course is developed and approved, DLOT student services staff markets the course to interested students.
Information Dissemination: DLOT provides students with general information related to the Independent Learning Program, including policies, procedures, tuition and fees, and courses available. Students with questions regarding the mechanics of matriculating through an independent learning course are provided general advising by DLOT student services staff. Students who require information regarding academic programs are referred to the appropriate college academic advisor.
Enrollment in Independent Learning Courses: DLOT registers the students, collects course fees, and provides all necessary materials to the registered student. AU students who register for an Independent Learning Program course must pay the stated course fees and tuition to DLOT (Independent Learning is a self-supporting operation). AU students are limited to two independent learning courses per semester. AU students registering for a DLOT independent learning course first must have approval from their Dean’s office (checked for program applicability, course load, enrollment status, etc.) AU students cannot enroll in an Independent Learning course if an on-campus section of the course is available. The minimum time allowed for completion of a course is 30 days; the maximum is nine months. An AU student may enroll for the new “graded” option which requires completion of the course within one term. The graded option allows course grades earned in independent learning courses to apply to the AU student’s GPA (Grade Point Average).
Assignment Handling: DLOT facilitates the flow of assignments between students and faculty. Assignments are sent to DLOT, are logged in to the database, are forwarded to the faculty member, are received at DLOT after the faculty member grades them, are logged in the DLOT database, and then are returned to the student with the faculty member’s comments and evaluation. This process continues until all assignments are completed satisfactorily. The DLOT database contains detailed information on the performance and the status of each student in an Independent Learning course.
Examinations/Grades: Once the student has satisfactorily completed all assignments, the student selects a proctor to supervise the final exam. DLOT approved proctors are academic administrators in the student’s locale: school superintendent or principal, academic dean or department head at a college, another independent learning office test supervisor at a college, or an education officer at a military installation. Exams are given under the same circumstances as they would be on campus. Once the proctored exam is over, the proctor collects the exam and written material, seals them in an envelope and immediately drops them in the mail. When the exam is received by DLOT, it is handled in the same method as an assignment. A final exam and course grade report is provided the faculty member. Copies of the completed form are distributed to the faculty member, the DLOT office, the registrar, and the student. Regardless of how well a student does on the course assignments, the student must pass the final exam in order to pass the course. Some students also include a midterm exam which must be taken under the same conditions as the final exam. (AU students take