Academic Tips for Success


Class Modalities

ONLINE A traditional asynchronous class is when students do their homework AND their classwork at their own selected time. Course materials are available in Moodlerooms and while there are still due dates, there is no class meeting time.

REMOTE A class that meets synchronously (the class comes together) at a scheduled class time at least once a week. Materials are available online through Moodlerooms.

HYBRID A class that meets in-person part of the time and remotely part of the time. The online portion may be synchronous or asynchronous or both. Course materials are available through Moodlerooms.

IN-PERSON A class that meets on campus at a scheduled class time. You may also attend in-person classes through Zoom if you are quarantined, sick, or approved for remote learning. Course materials are available through Moodlerooms.

Before Class


At least one of your classes will have a remote component, so do your best to find a space that is quiet and where you can work with minimal interruption. Wearing headphones is also helpful to reduce outside distractions. If you are on campus, you can find socially distanced workspaces in the library, Maguire Hall, and other areas on campus.


All classes this Fall will utilize Moodlerooms. Before your first class, login to your account and familiarize yourself with the interface. There is a course setup tutorial to help you learn how to navigate the site. If you cannot access Moodlerooms, contact John Edel ([email protected]). 

Synchronous remote classes will meet through Zoom. Create a free account using your stac.edu email address. Test your video camera, mic, and choose a virtual background in Zoom for additional privacy. Check your stac.edu Google calendar or class Moodleroom for Zoom links and course times. 


During Class


If you are attending class remotely, that doesn’t mean the classroom expectations are different. Before class, sign out of social media, set your phone to Do Not Disturb, and get dressed. Even if you are working from your bedroom, you should not be lying on your bed. Show respect for your classmates and professor by treating your remote class as seriously as you would your class on campus.


Mute your microphone and turn your camera on as much as possible. Discussions are more robust when you can see your classmates and professors teach better when they can see who they’re talking to and read your reactions. Distractions will occur, but try your best to focus on the class and not the other people that may be around you. Wait for a break to walk around or have a snack. Use the chat to participate if you are in a noisy environment.


Take notes and ask questions just like you would in the classroom. Participate in discussions. Don’t multitask--that website, crossword puzzle, text thread will still be there after class. If the Zoom is being recorded, don’t rely on it to make up for what you might have missed. Pay attention the first time.


After Class


Use your calendar to plan the week ahead. Classes may meet fully online, fully remotely, or a combination. This will be confusing for the first few weeks, but if you stay organized it will be easier to keep track. Set goals for each week and keep track of when assignments are due. 


Asynchronous material will be found in your Moodle classroom. Just like in a normal semester, you need to complete readings, watch videos, write in the discussion forums, etc. outside of class time. 


Your books might be digital this semester, but you still need to buy, rent and read them! Reading and notetaking are more effective when they are not done on a computer. When possible, take notes by hand and read a physical book or use a tablet with a stylus. 


The Center for Academic Excellence provides academic support to all students, and offers everyone the opportunity to become independent learners. This semester it is open  virtually, so take advantage of their tutoring, the Writing Lab, Supplemental Instruction, and other workshops. Appointments can be made by emailing Susan Kopac ([email protected]).


This has been a very stressful year. Give yourself extra time to complete tasks. Stand up, take breaks, talk to your friends. Add things like going for a walk or doing yoga to your calendar too. Maintain a good sleep schedule. And if you need additional resources, contact CAPS here on campus at STAC, or STAC Telehealth, which provides 24/7/365 medical and mental telehealth care for all students, at no cost.


Check your STAC email daily. This is the best way to stay in communication with your professors and to learn about important campus events. Reach out to your professors if you have questions, concerns or just want to talk. You are part of the STAC community and we are here to support you.