Student Handbook Updated August 2012 Welcome to!

This Student Handbook is designed to provide you with a clear understanding of and its offerings. It will clarify the various privileges and responsibilities that you can expect as a student. Note that The Saylor Foundation reserves the right to change any provision listed in this handbook and agrees to make a good faith effort to alert all community members and students to any such changes. If you have any questions about the information contained in this handbook, please email us at

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org Page 2 of 14 .org The Basics—What Is a Saylor.TABLE OF CONTENTS Introduction Director’s Welcome History and Mission Accreditation Trustee Student Rights and Responsibilities Community Standards Non-Discrimination Policy Community Code of Conduct Academic Code of Conduct Disciplinary Action Study at Course? Course Materials Learning Outcomes Grading System The Final Exam Grading Errors Study Recommendations Student Records and Information Computing and Networking Resources Access Browser Requirements The Saylor Foundation Saylor.

org’s cost -free. openaccess courses are designed for Page 3 of 14 . or spend some time exploring just for the sake of learning. a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization established by Michael J. we believe the sheer cost of education to be the primary barrier. I am thrilled to welcome you. We look forward to your success here at! Whether you are planning to complete a course. however. meaning that you can work through our courses at your own pace wherever and whenever you are ready. master an entire area of study.S. The Saylor Foundation Saylor. each of our courses will require dedication and serious academic work. you will be able to access courses designed by professors from institutions around the country without paying a penny. While this difficulty can be attributed to any number of obstacles. Saylor. supplement your learning experience at another is operated by The Saylor Foundation. All you need is Internet access and a desire to learn. Our automated courses are comprised of carefully curated openly-licensed and open-access content. aligned with measurable learning outcomes. Put simply. Here. We eventually hope to expand to offer courseware at all levels of education. we recognize that many students are finding it increasingly difficult to enroll in college courses.INTRODUCTION Director’s Welcome Welcome to Saylor. The Saylor Foundation History and Mission Saylor. We believe that this rigor will serve you well in any future endeavors you undertake. not to confuse ease of access with ease of coursework! Saylor. self-paced courses that align with the highest enrollment disciplines in the U. top-quality learning experiences. very! Yours. Alana Harrington Director. and subjected to a rigorous peer review process. from Kindergarten through Post-Doctorate. Guided by this vision and made largely possible by recent advances in technology. are facing these challenges. you do not need to worry about enrollment periods or schedules—our courses are always on and always accessible. Thanks to our open design. At The Saylor Foundation. the mission of the Saylor Foundation is to harness technology to make education courses are designed to provide challenging. and otherwise access educational opportunities. founder and CEO of business intelligence firm MicroStrategy. Mr. higher education system. complete program requirements. Saylor. Once more. from geographical distance to fixed class schedules. The Saylor Foundation has recruited credentialed professors to design a suite of cost-free. can serve as a solution. As such. and very bold idea: Education should be free. like many of us. If you. I should warn you. Saylor established the Foundation because he had a very simple.

org is not an accredited institution and cannot confer degrees. we are currently exploring various partnership opportunities that may enable us to secure transfer credit arrangements. communicate in basic French. Yet those very same MIT lectures. write more effectively. you may consider reaching out to your academic advisor at your home institution to determine whether you can use a Saylor. Many of you are here simply because you want to learn and you recognize the inherent value of education. he has long felt that great learning needn’t require a great deal of money or a brick-and-mortar institution. Trustee Michael J. unique. Employers use these credentials in order to evaluate and differentiate between applicants. the same academic-authored books–substantially the same experiences–are now offered for free to anyone with an Internet connection. effectively. to zero. you can learn to program a computer..Accreditation Saylor. The Saylor Foundation Saylor. CEO. He believes that current technology–and its increasing diffusion among people in all countries–makes it possible to drive the marginal cost of each new unit of education. and president of MicroStrategy. has served as the sole trustee of the Saylor Foundation since its inception in course in the context of an independent study program. Technology. we encourage you to use your Saylor. much of his world-class education had been gained from the back of a 500person lecture hall at considerable expense for all involved. completing dual degrees in Aeronautics & Astronautics and Science. The only problem lies in connecting these materials to students in a certificates (note that when you pass a course’s final exam. He established The Saylor Foundation because he had a very simple. Until then. Inc. integrated solutions–and empowerment. we believe that the completion of Saylor. He brings this drive and conscientious attention to the Saylor Foundation’s Free Education project. Within two years of graduation.) Alternately. growing it through sustained attention to providing clients useful. (For more information on PLAR. please read here. Saylor founded the company that he helms today. you will receive a PDF certificate of completion) to ask your home institution about Saylor. transformative way. We also understand. that we live in a world where college credits and degrees carry weight. chairman. transfer credit opportunities and/or their acceptability in your Prior Learning Assessment Recognition (PLAR) portfolio. However. To this end. Saylor. Here. or improve the way in which you manage your small business—just to name a few examples. Saylor graduated at the top of his high school class and attended MIT on a ROTC scholarship. A voracious and often self-directed learner. and very bold idea: Education should be free. however. We believe that the real-life value of this knowledge speaks for Page 4 of 14 . & Society. courses can be valuable and useful in a variety of ways. very earnest.

provided that all communications abide by the community standards outlined below. The Saylor Foundation Saylor. As a Saylor. you are afforded the following important rights: 1. Access to fair. Your use of represents a voluntary decision on your part to uphold the community standards established by The Saylor Foundation and outlined in this document. and its courses and course materials completely free and open access. Due process in the case of disciplinary action.STUDENT RIGHTS AND RESPONSIBILITIES In making Saylor. Freedom to pursue your own educational student and to remain a part of this community as long as you uphold the community standards outlined in the section below. and clear academic assessment. 4. unbiased. The Saylor Foundation has extended you an invitation to join its academic community as a Saylor. Freedom of inquiry and Page 5 of 14 . 3.

sexual orientation including gender identity or gender expression. misrepresentation.COMMUNITY STANDARDS All members of the Saylor Foundation academic community. or collusion. falsification. religion. We encourage you to think seriously about the way in which you are interacting with and using the content you find on the Internet. This non-discrimination policy applies to Saylor. plagiarism. and/or turning in the work of another as one’s own. please report the violation by submitting a report to The Saylor Foundation at contact@saylor. and administration. color. or acts of harassment or embarrassment at the expense of others in any communication surrounding or using our materials. the Saylor Foundation does not engage in discrimination against any person on the basis of race. tampering with the academic work of another. and/or veteran status and will comply with all federal and state non-discrimination. Many do not understand what plagiarism is and/or do not grasp the severity of its offense. sex. are expected to assist in maintaining the integrity of the Saylor Foundation by upholding the community standards outlined here and by reporting any incidents that violate them. including instances of cheating. and facilitating another individual’s acts of intellectual dishonesty. Consistent with this principle and applicable laws. The Saylor Foundation Saylor. Community Code of Conduct The Saylor Foundation values highly freedom of expression and diversity of opinion when exercised in conjunction with civility and respect for others. profanity. Non-Discrimination Policy The Saylor Foundation is committed to equality of opportunity. national and regulations. disseminating or sharing exam questions and answers. age. receiving external assistance on an assignment or exam (except where authorized). Plagiarism is a particularly pervasive problem in today’s digital age. falsifying or withholding information about the source of a quotation. genetic information. completing an assignment or exam for another. including faculty. forgery. students. The Saylor Foundation defines plagiarism as the act of copying words or ideas from a source without appropriate attribution. The Saylor Foundation will not tolerate any offensive or threatening behavior. failing to put a quotation in quotation marks. Academic Code of Conduct The Saylor Foundation upholds high standards of academic integrity and will not tolerate acts of dishonesty. equal opportunity and affirmative action laws. Disciplinary Action If you believe that the codes of conduct outlined above have been Page 6 of 14 .org educational programs and activities as well as employment terms and conditions. orders.

• Denial or Retraction of Course Credit/Course Certificate • Academic Probation The student is not permitted to maintain a Saylor Foundation account for up to two years and is consequently unable to use the ePortfolio or discussion forums or to earn credit/certification for any coursework completed during that time. or any other such features. such as the ePortfolio system. • Academic Expulsion The student is permanently barred access to all site features requiring a Saylor Foundation account. disciplinary actions may include: • Formal Warning The student will be warned that any additional violations of Saylor policies may result in more serious disciplinary action. The Saylor Foundation will conduct an investigation into the case and will notify the student(s) involved of the report. If the investigation finds the student(s) guilty of Page 7 of 14 . The Saylor Foundation Saylor. the evidence on which it is based. The Saylor Foundation will send a written charge to the student explaining the nature of the misconduct. discussion forums. as well as to any and all credits/certifications. and the resulting disciplinary action.Upon receipt of a report of suspected misconduct. Should a Saylor student be found guilty of infringing upon the standards outlined in our Codes of Conduct.

and that there are no enrollment periods or start dates. to the extent possible. In order to take a course. though this not required. Though course content is entirely open-access. you will be asked to complete a final exam. This means that all courses are designed to require a semester-long period of engagement (roughly 15 weeks or 135 hours). meaning that it is your responsibility to define your own schedule and to progress through the course and its assigned materials as quickly or slowly as you wish. collections. a lecture series from a higher education institution on iTunes U. Aside from these features. Further. web media. As you work through each unit. you will need to navigate to the course home page and begin to work through each of its listed units. and complete various assignments. (You might find a textbook from our open textbook challenge. you will need to create a free account if you choose to take a final exam. Course Materials Each Saylor. course materials. assignments. view various videos. framed. though—as noted above—you may choose to work through a course as quickly or slowly as you please. register. automated. you will be presented with instructions to read various texts. the learning experience you might encounter in a traditional higher education institution. and course notes and quizzes from MIT—all in the same course!) You will also often find materials that our professors have developed specifically for our courses. Many of these materials are from other courses are different from many online courses in that they are:     zero-cost. our professors have designed all Saylor. As noted above. and open-access. each course contains time advisories that estimate the specific time investment that it will require. you will need to create a free account in order to access this final Page 8 of 14 . and more. assessments. and repositories. You can read more about time advisories course contains a unique combination of readings. or log in to take a course.Org Course? Saylor. lectures. and/or developed by our professors so that they will enable you to achieve the course’s stated learning outcomes (for an explanation of The Saylor Foundation courses to emulate. At the end. You may also opt to create a free ePortfolio account in order to keep track of your progress through courses and areas of study. meaning that there are absolutely no fees associated with our courses.STUDY AT SAYLOR. from the top of the page to the bottom of the page. All course materials have been carefully selected. self-paced. or site.ORG The Basics—What Is A Saylor. meaning that you do not need to enroll. meaning that there are no professors that will grade your work or provide you with feedback.

the course title. you will find lists of “Learning Outcomes. Please pay special attention to the various terms of use outlined in our course materials. and abilities that you will be able to demonstrate upon completion of the entire course. Each of these will be accompanied by an answer key. and abilities that you should be able to demonstrate upon completion of a learning courses feature final exam. please read here. and graph of a function. students will be able to define and identify the domain.” In Saylor. Some Saylor. tests. For a full explanation of the various copyright and reuse issues that pertain to our courses and their materials. Grading System As explained above.learning outcomes. you will receive a PDF certificate indicating that you have successfully passed a Saylor. the scores you earn on them will not count towards your final grade. and abilities that you will be able to demonstrate upon completion of a given unit. skills. or self-assessment rubric (a rubric is a list of criteria that you can use to determine the quality of a particular type of work) so that you can score your own work. just beneath the unit introduction and the unit time advisory. range. you have not successfully passed the course. the Saylor. Saylor. An example of a learning outcome might be: “Upon successful completion of this course. All course materials are completely cost-free. skills. Though we encourage you to complete these assessments and assignments because they will help you master the course’s stated learning outcomes. courses are automated. Instead. the date of your exam. You may choose to re-take the exam. If you receive lower than a 70%.” Learning Outcomes are written statements that identify the knowledge. auto-graded final Page 9 of 14 . If you earn a 70% or higher on a course. the only official grade you can receive is the score you earn on your multiple-choice. Learning Outcomes Throughout our courses. please see the next section). you will find course-wide learning outcomes listed just beneath the “Purpose of Course” on a course homepage. Final Exams The Saylor Foundation Saylor. as explained courses. You will also find unit -specific learning outcomes within each unit. while the unit-specific outcomes will specify the knowledge. You will not receive grades or feedback from a professor. guide to responding. and other types of assessments and assignments. Many of the materials we include in our courses cannot be reused or reposted elsewhere on the web without explicit permission from various copyright holders. and a unique identification logo/seal. This PDF will include your name. The course-wide outcomes will specify the knowledge.

start the conversation!   Engaging with Other Students: Using ePortfolio and Discussion Forums While Saylor courses are designed to be self-paced. and other ideas that occur to you as you work through our courses in a separate notebook or in a file on your computer. automated. Use the discussion forums (http://forums. and try to set aside time to discuss the course. the questions will be different. complete readings. you are encouraged to re-take the exam after reviewing the course materials and studying further for the final exam. thoughts. connect with other students. and ideas. Swap papers. please email the    Set aside regular time each week to dedicate to your studies in order to make steady progress and keep yourself motivated. quizzes. important Faculty at contact@saylor. post to introduce yourself. navigate to a course home page and click on the “Final Exam” in the Resource Center on the left-hand side of the page. we have outlined a couple of recommendations that may help you in your study here at Saylor. click the link in order to create a free account and access the exam. you will receive a PDF certificate that will confirm that you have completed and passed the course. Study Recommendations Though you may choose to work through our courses as you please. If the discussion for a course seems quiet. Then. navigate to the final unit of the Administration will adjust the grade on any exam attempts taken within six months of the error’s reporting. and registration-free. If you earn a 70% or higher on this final exam. etc. The final exam will always be the last assignment listed in the course. If you do not earn 70% or higher. Grading Errors If you suspect an error in either the grading of the final exam or in the exam Page 10 of 14 . which feature briefer exams) are designed to take 90-120 minutes to complete. Note that each time you access the exam for a course. Find a friend or fellow student to work alongside. If the Saylor Faculty confirms the error. You will need to wait two weeks before being able to access the examination again. ask Alternately. view lectures. Jot down questions.In order to take a final exam. Revisit these notes frequently to maintain focus and work through issues. All exams (except those in our budding Professional Development program. you may choose to enhance your learning experience by using special features and tools we make available to students on our site. The Saylor Foundation Saylor. Find a quiet study area that you can use to focus on the course’s assignments. and seek out further resources. The Saylor.

By creating an ePortfolio account or joining the Forums (or both – your login works for either one). Saylor staff is always happy to provide answers when we can. While we hope and encourage the Saylor Student Community to lead these discussions. and even view a roadmap for working through a full Area of Page 11 of 14 . View student profiles in order to see which courses your fellow students are taking and how active they have been on the Forums. send him or her a message! The Saylor Foundation Saylor. you will be able to enroll in courses. If you need help with a course or any other topic related to The Saylor Foundation. do you have a question about where to find a resource? Whether people have enjoyed a course? When a new course or final exam will be added to the site? Pose these and any other questions you might have to the Forums and receive feedback from fellow Saylor students. we hope that students will use the ePortfolio system and Forums as a means of fostering collaboration and engagement. be proactive: search the ePortfolio student directory for fellow students who are working through your Area of Study. Ultimately. By creating an ePortfolio account. the system allows for the upload and sharing of coursework that you may have completed as part of finishing a Saylor course. If you feel that a student would make a good study partner. With a Forum account. For example. you can start or join a conversation about a Saylor. Furthermore. display the courses you have successfully completed. you will be able to communicate and share with the Saylor community.

You may review our full Privacy Policy here. If you have created an account with our ePortfolio system. you may contact The Saylor Foundation at exam at a passing score of 70% or above. you will need to provide the following information: ● First name ● Last Name ● Password ● Email address ● Country You may also sign up using an existing Facebook account. or other entity of your choosing. these verification codes are also included in their entirety in your student transcript. Each exam certificate includes a verification code that will allow you to prove that you have completed a Page 12 of 14 .org with your request and we will verify your account The Saylor Foundation Saylor. The Saylor Foundation is committed to maintaining your privacy and will not release any information about you or your activity at saylor. however. If you choose to create an account in our ePortfolio system OR our Discussion Forums. The verification code can be used on the http://school.saylor. school. Accessing Your Account Information In the event that you lose any of your account information. You may elect to do so. and/or participate in our discussion forums. you are not required to provide any identifying information about yourself. You may yourself provide any information you would like to an employer. However. you will need to provide the following information: ● Username ● Password ● Email address ● First name ● Last Name ● Country Our student database will store this account information along with any and all exam certificates that you earn (and the information that each contains). by choosing to take a final exam (administered in Moodle). including by utilizing share functions of the ePortfolio system. If you choose to create an account in Moodle.STUDENT RECORDS AND INFORMATION As a to any third website without requiring an account or login. Saylor will not provide any information to any such entity. create an ePortfolio account to track your progress. which is available through the ePortfolio system under your account.

We may require additional information such as the course exams that you have completed and/or the areas of study in which you Page 13 of 14 .information through your full name. The Saylor Foundation Saylor. email address. and country.

You must also have the ability/permission to:  install plug-ins or software (e.  Open Microsoft files and documents (e. but you will need Internet access in order to fully work through all course materials and the final exam. .doc. Please update to the latest versions. you must have Internet access. . Adobe Reader or Flash). or Google Chrome Page 14 of 14 .g. You may be able to download some course materials to your computer for offline use.g. We are considering our next steps in appealing to mobile and tablet users. Browser Requirements Our courseware is best viewed using Microsoft Internet Explorer. .  download and save files and documents to your computer. website is viewable on—though not optimized for—mobile and tablet devices. Mozilla Firefox. A high-speed Internet connection is recommended.xls.) The Saylor. The Saylor Foundation Saylor.COMPUTING AND NETWORK RESOURCES Access In order to access our courses and course materials..ppt.

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