INSTRUCTOR: JOHN DOE
number, and title. Document title. Some or all of this information you might want to
place in a (graphical) page banner.
WELCOME TO CLASS
Welcome to class -- and thanks for signing up for this online course. For many of you,
this may be your first online (on the Internet) course, so we'll use the entire class
today to discuss the course, get acquainted with a few simple computer operations, and
poke around a little to see how things will work. If you are not a computer wiz, don't
worry -- you won't need to be. From a computer standpoint, absolutely everything is simple.
By the time you leave class today, you'll know almost everything needed to navigate this
course on the Internet.
A short, simple welcome
to the class.
- A. WHY THE ONLINE FORMAT?
- Before getting into the organizational details and topics of the course,
if you might be wondering why the course is presented online in the first
place, I have some comments on another page. Click here for those
comments about the online format.
One advantage of the online format is the ability to include a lot of graphic
images -- over a thousand in all -- plus video clips. Hopefully they will
make the subject more interesting and the material easier to understand. And
you won't have to pass them on to someone sitting next to you or strain to
see them on a screen at the front of a room -- they'll be right in front of
you, to spend time studing, to keep, print, or whatever you choose.
Most of the photos were taken right here in Hawaii, so the course should
incidentally be something of a tour of materials, building construction, and
design in and around Honolulu. If you live on the island of Oahu, I suspect
that you will recognize many of the photos, and maybe you will see in them
things you hadn't noticed before. You can read about materials and
construction in a textbook, but the photos and explanations should make it
mean more by showing that it's all happening right here. During the
course, I hope you will develop an appreciation for our built environment in
Hawaii. If you take from the course what I hope you do, there will probably
be certain buildings and other things you will see even years from now and be
reminded of this course and what you learned about them here.
Check out my
favorite drawing and photo images presented in the course. There
is also a much larger
index of photos.
Another useful resource in the course is a
directory of construction materials references that contains links
to sites related to the topics of the course.
John has simply decided
to address this issue right away and set the stage for a course that is not simply an
alternative to a classroom course, but one that is the best that it can be partly
because of the online format. Students should understand the format to be an advantage
of the course, not a hindrance. Links to other pages are included partly to get
students used to jumping to other pages for needed information, then returning to
the start page.
- B. PURPOSE AND ORGANIZATION
- This is a no-prerequisite first course in construction materials and one
of the first regular-program courses in the Drafting Technology program at
Honolulu Community College. Although it is required for HCC Drafting
Technology students, it is open to anyone who might be interested. No part
of the course is directed specifically at drafting technology students.
Reading, research and construction projects, and collaboration with the class
are major components of the course. Although the course bears the "DRAFT"
alpha, it is not a drawing course.
The course is a three-credit course that on campus would require five hours
of in-class work and maybe about three hours outside of class on study and
other activities each week over a 16-week semester. Students taking the
course online should plan on spending up to the same eight hours a week on
the course. Competencies will be listed for each class.
The course follows the CSI (Construction Specifications Institute) format
that arranges the material into 16 divisions -- concrete, masonry, metals,
wood and plastics, furnishings, mechanical systems, etc. This works quite
well because the course is about 16 weeks long. We will spend much more time
on some divisions than others, but it means on average about one
week per topic.
The course -- what it
is and how it fits into a program or supports other courses, needs, etc. The structure
of the course, and why this structure.
- C. COURSE OBJECTIVES
- To acquaint students with the types, properties, uses, and variety of
materials important in construction.
- To acquaint students with common building methods and practices involving
- To acquaint students with building and general construction products and
their associated quality, durability, warrantees, and availability.
- To familiarize students with the local (and national) built environment
and to promote a greater appreciation of it.
- To provide students with hands-on, research, and collaborative activities
to vary and deepen the study of construction materials.
six general, overall objectives of the course. These might be stated in
the form of "behavioral" or "performance" objectives, but John has
reserved that format for class and activity objectives that are more
specific, differentiated, and quantifiable.
- D. COURSE TOPICS IN THE CSI FORMAT
- NOTE: The topics have been rearranged to correlate with work on
a required construction project (explained "in class" next time).
This is why the divisions are out of order.
- CONCRETE (Division 3)
- SITE WORK (Division 2)
- MASONRY (Division 4)
- WOOD (Division 6, Part I)
- METALS (Division 5)
- GENERAL REQUIREMENTS (Division 1)
- PLASTICS (Division 6, Part II)
- SPECIAL CONSTRUCTION (Division 13)
- SPECIALTIES (Division 10)
- DOORS, WINDOWS, AND GLASS (Division 8)
- FURNISHINGS (Division 12)
- EQUIPMENT (Division 11)
- THERMAL AND MOISTURE PROTECTION (Division 7)
- CONVEYING SYSTEMS (Division 14)
- FINISHES (Division 9)
- MECHANICAL SYSTEMS (Division 15)
- ELECTRICAL SYSTEMS (Division 16)
The units or topics
of study. It shows the progression of topics and evidences your pre-course planning.
- E. TEXTBOOK AND REQUIRED SUPPLIES
- Optional textbook: Construction Materials and Processes,
latest edition, by Donald Watson.
- Supplies (for the building construction project):
Students need to know right away what materials they need and much the course will
- F. A NOTE ABOUT YOU AND THIS COURSE
- Students learn best in quite different ways. One of the advantages
of the online format of the course is that it allows students to
approach the course in ways that suit their personal styles and
preferences. In classrooms, instructors are inclined to teach either
as they themselves were taught, or as they think "the average student"
prefers. Online, all of the instructor-presented class material is
laid out at once, and students can do with it whatever they prefer in
order to learn in as personal and unique a fashion as possible.
To understand how you might learn best and how you might
approach the course, it's suggested that you complete a
learning style inventory, use the information
given to figure and interpret your score, and plan your learning
strategy accordingly. Another couple of online tools of this sort are
Keirsey Temperament Questionnaire and the
Keirsey Character Questionnaire.
This course by design specifically accommodates different learning
styles by involving a variety of components, including text, a wealth
of photos and drawings, video clips, self-check quizzes, reference
lists, online discussion, and a construction project. Since you are
probably used to learning more or less as prescribed or required by a
classroom teacher and are not used to designing your own learning
strategy, it might take a little time to do that and to settle into a
comfortable routine. I think you'll find that as you figure out on
your own (and with the help of the online questionnaires mentioned)
how to learn the material, everything will fall into place.
Online learning, you will find, is quite different than classroom
learning. It requires different attitudes, responsibilities, and
communication skills. To help you prepare for this different learning
environment (for most students), you might want to take a FREE online
preparatory course (a short online course about taking online courses
-- sound a little strange?). Click the address here:
How students learn,
how they approach the course material, and how they manage their time and motivate
themselves are particularly important in online courses. In classroom courses,
approaches, meeting times, attendance, etc. are structured and overseen by the
instructors. But in online courses, a lot of responsibility falls on students
individually and personally -- and typically many students are not trained or prepared
for this responsibility. John believes that online instructors need to help students
with this, and the help, he has learned, is most appropriately provided as early as
- G. CONTACT THE INSTRUCTOR
|E-Mail (best way)
firstname.lastname@example.org (weekends, holidays)
||There is an e-mail button in a banner at the top of
each class page (activated at the very end of this class) for sending
questions and comments.
||(808) 000-0000, (leave a message after six rings; please speak loud enough and clearly)
||Office Hrs: 9:30-10:30 MWF, 12:30-1:30 TT
Office Loc: Building 2, Room 613 (see the campus map)
||Weekly times will be arranged. Click on the "chat" button in the banner at any class page.
|Program Web Pages
|Instructor Web Pages
ability to contact instructors is very important for students taking
online courses. Since they cannot ask questions in a classroom, catch an
instructor right before or after a class, and often not take advantage of
real office hours, online instructors, John believes, need to be pay
special attention to being reachable and to letting students know how they
can be contacted.
- H. CONTACT CLASSMATES
- In a banner at the top of each class page (after the information
has been compiled) there will be a button entitled "classmates" that
you can click for the names, e-mail addresses, one-line biographies,
and (optional) web page addresses of everyone in the class. If you
want your picture and/or additional biographical information to be
available to other students, you can include that on your personal
At the top of each class page (activated at the very end of this class)
there will also be a button entitled "collaborate" that will enable
you to communicate with the entire class and with scheduled outside
experts and guests. Part of your grade will be based on your using
this regularly (see "collaboration" under the heading "Course
Since online students
do not physically meet, special provisions need to be made for them to learn who else
is in the class and how to meet those other students in cyberspace as needed or desired.
- I. COURSE ACTIVITIES
- Most of the required reading will be reading of material posted on the
web (like this) for each class. Reading in the textbook is recommended for
every topic studied. The material I present will seldom duplicate what's
presented in the textbook, so the textbook should be used as a reinforcement
or complement to in-class material. The suggested textbook readings are
listed in the schedule that follows. It is best if you do the reading in
the textbook before the dates shown.
|INTERESTING FACT: In almost every class
there is one or more "interesting fact" (short, red text, etc. something
like this) that is included for fun and interest only. You will never be
tested on "interesting facts," and you can simply bypass them if you want.
They are often surprising, weird, or obscure facts, but they are all true.
Video clips are incorporated into online material that you will need to
read. To view the clips, you will need to download a free video player.
The download is very simple, however. Go to Vivo Player by clicking the
Vivo image below. Enter (1) your computer operating system (probably
Windows 95, but check the drop-down list for other possibilities), (2)
your browser type (Internet Explorer or Netscape), and (3) your first
name, last name, and e-mail address. Scroll down that page and click
"submit." At the next screen that comes up, answer "yes." If you see
a message indicating that you will not be able to hear any audio because
you do not have an audio device in your computer, that's OK -- the video
clips to view will not have audio anyway. So if that message comes up,
answer "no." That's all there is to it.
CLICK THIS IMAGE TO DOWNLOAD THE VIDEO PLAYER REQUIRED TO VIEW
THE VIDEO CLIPS
The video clips are best viewed on Netscape. On Internet Explorer they
will likely stop playing before the end (i.e., they will be cut short at
the end). For more information, click
2. DAILY SELF-CHECK QUIZZES
- Ungraded quizzes for testing yourself on class explanations and other
activities will be available at all classes except those following a construction
project activity and after exam classes. Answers and explanations will be
shown on a linked page, so you can check your answers immediately after
taking the quizzes. Exactly how you use the quizzes, as well as simply
choosing whether or not to use them at all, will be up to you. For them to
have the greatest effect, however, you should take them just like in-class
quizzes, then check your answers. The quizzes should give you a good idea
about how well you are learning the material -- and the explanations of the
answers will often contain new material that will help you learn. The
self-check quizzes are almost entirely multiple choice, but about half of
each major exam will be short essay (discuss, compare, explain, etc.). The
multiple choice items will simply enable you to check your answers immediately.
For possible subjects of essay questions, you should look more at the class
objectives (the "objectives" button in the banner at the top of each page).
3. ON-CAMPUS INTERIM EXAMS
- There will be two interim exams -- one on Saturday, February 20 at
8:00am, the other on Saturday, April 10 at 8:00am. They will be given in
Room 615 in Building 2. For the building location on campus, you can check
the campus map. Students
will be admitted to the exams up to 8:30am. Bring a picture ID (nobody
admitted without proper identification). More about the exams closer to
the test dates.
If you are an off-island or out-of-state student,
you may take any or all of the exams at a school in your area provided that
(1) a school instructor, administrator, counselor, or regularly-employed
testing lab official administers the exam, (2) the participation of that
person is arranged by you, (3) the name, phone number, position, etc. of
that person is e-mailed to me no later than two weeks prior to the scheduled
exam date(s), and (4) any such exam is taken one day prior to the exam
date(s) shown on the schedule that follows if the testing place is not open
on Saturdays. Any project that is due must be mailed or delivered to me by
the due date (post marked by that date in the case of mailing).
4. CONSTRUCTION PROJECT
- There is a construction project that will run approximately two-thirds
of the semester. We'll devote on average every fourth class period to
working on it. Each day (whenever it's scheduled), I'll give you instructions
for completing a part of the project. It will be a small model of a building
section similar to these:
Model by Kesha Lee (left) features unique door and
window designs and a realistic foundation. Model by Nathan Jucutan (middle)
has a real concrete foundation. Model by Derrick Lee (right) has mostly Koa
wood parts and a number of added features -- right down to a mouse in the
crawl space below the floor.
These models are 9" x 12" and stand about 18" high. The bases are plywood,
most of the foundations are "Styrofoam," the framing is out of "Foamcor"
board, and the flooring, siding, door, and roof sheathing are out of
The purposes of the project are to (1) learn basic building construction
and how building components go together, (2) involve you in work with a
few of the materials studied, (3) get you into a store where the materials
are sold, (4) provide experiences in working precisely, to scale, and
according to specific directions on a three-dimensional project (which will
aid you in later drafting courses), and (5) provide a change of pace from
reading and quiet hands-off participation. Along with simple instructions
on how to construct the model, there will be information and photos on
actual building construction. The project will be due on the morning of
the second interim exam as shown in the schedule that follows -- and as
you'll be reminded prior to the due date.
5. KITCHEN DESIGN EXERCISE
- There will be one kitchen design project assigned in the course. You
will need to print a web page that shows the plan, design a kitchen for it,
and mail or deliver the completed plan to me.
6. ELECTRICAL PLAN
- At the second test on Saturday, April 10th, you'll receive a large floor
plan to save until later in the course when we cover electrical systems
(Division 16). You'll need to complete the plan with electrical wiring
symbols, an electrical schedule, and a load computation. Since you will not
draft the plan itself, no special drafting equipment will be required. The
completed plan will be due on the morning of the final exam.
7. RESEARCH PROJECT
- There will be a required research project. Each student will research
a different topic. More about this in a week or two.
8. E-MAIL AND COLLABORATION
- Part of your grade will be based on your collaborating with the class
online at least once each week. There will be a "collaboration" button in
the banner at the top of each class page. Use it like you would to send an
e-mail message to an individual. I will follow your discussions, but I may
not actively participate. As much as possible, I want it to be your
forum. I would prefer not to influence its direction or make my
presence too obvious. I will, however, follow up on discussion topics as
needed or desired at the beginning of the next class sessions. A feature
of this discussion forum is that outside experts and guests will be able to
participate from time to time. So do not be surprised if you receive a
response or other message from someone who is an expert or otherwise has
first hand knowledge of a particular topic. I'll try to keep you informed
about who the outsiders are.
9. FINAL EXAM
- The final exam will be given on Saturday, May 8, at 8:30am in Room 615,
Building 2 on the main campus. The format will be similar to that of the
interim tests -- about half multiple choice, about half short essay. The
exam will be comprehensive, but a slight emphasis will be on material
covered since the last interim exam. Your grade will be posted on the web
along with your final grade in the course. More information about the final
exam closer to the exam date.
principal components of the course innumerated and explained.
The self-check quizzes are simply provided for practice, but advantage is
taken of adding a little material or presenting it a little differently on
the page where answers are given. The online format makes it very
convenient for discussion at almost every correct and incorrect answer.
Students do not read every explanation, but it is there for students who
might wonder why a certain answer is correct or who need a little
additional discussion of the topic. In a classroom there would simply not
be the time to address almost every right and wrong answer.
The interim and final exams are proctored. At the present time there is
simply no respectable alternative. Unproctored exams may be legitimate
activities and be legitimately graded, but they are not "tests" in the
truest sense of the term. It has also been learned that proctored exams
work very well (even for distant students), and they are readily accepted
by students -- especially by the better students who appreciate grades
truly reflective of their achievement and whose grades are not "corrupted"
by inflated grades received by those who take advantage of no supervision.
The construction project, design project, and electrical plan projects are
designed primarily to accommodate a wider range of learning styles. The
newsgroup discussion forum, the (recently instituted) chat forum, and the
research project also help accommodate different learning styles and
- J. GRADES
- Final grades will be based on the total number of points earned in the course.
The table below are listed the activities and their point values.
|RECAP AND WEIGHTING OF THE ACTIVITIES
||Not graded, but important practice for the exams.
|Interim Exam #1
|Interim Exam #2
|Kitchen Design Exercise
||Profile, plus 2-5 pts each of 15 wks
||Not graded (it's purely elective)
||451-500 pts = A
401-450 pts = B
351-400 pts = C
301-350 pts = D
000-300 pts = F
By clicking the "status" button in the page banner, you will be able to see at
any point in the course the number of points you have earned, the total number
of points still available, etc. at that point in the course.
GENERAL GRADING POLICIES
Except in cases of actual error, final grades are permanent. The last day to
withdraw from the course is Friday, October 16.
Final "I" grades will not be permitted except in cases of prolonged,
continuous, and excused absences in the latter half of the course. Under no
circumstances will an "I" grade be given when more than half of the coursework
has not been completed.
Final "N" grades will be given only in very rare and exceptional cases. An "N"
will never be given simply to replace a grade that you would prefer not
Very important and often
administratively required. Students MUST know how their performance will be graded, and
they must know this as early as possible. This is the place to "put it in writing" and
ensure that everyone is clear about it from the start (students who enroll late should be
required to review this online syllabus before proceeding further).
- K. NAVIGATIONAL AIDS
- These are the navigational aids you'll need to use to maneuver your way
around class. This is what they are and what they do. You can click on the
name of the item to see what it looks like.
||Find answers to self-check quiz items.
|BACK ONE PAGE
||Go back one page.
||Online chat with other students. Instructor present at scheduled hours.
||List of student names, e-mail addresses, home page links, etc.
||Post questions and comments, respond to others, etc. for the entire class to view.
||Send comments to instructor (similar to "Instructor").
||Continue to the next page (NOT the end of the class).
||Return to the DRAFT 26 home page.
||Quick links to all classes.
||Send a question, comment, etc. to the instructor.
||Go to the instructor's web page.
||Go on to the next class.
||View the objectives (or "competencies") for the class.
||Go to a list of references.
||Go to the daily schedule for the course at Class 1.
||A record of grade points earned to date.
||View a video clip related to the text.
The navigational buttons are
rather self-explanatory, and some students will learn what they are and what they do by
simply experimenting with them. But other students will need a detailed explanation and
demonstration, and this is the purpose of this section of the syllabus.
- L. GETTING TO CLASS
- I've set up a start page for you to go to every time you come to class.
To go to class, go directly to that page where there's a quick link to every
class, click the class you want to attend, and, voila, you'll immediately be
taken there. Try it now -- go to http://www.honolulu.hawaii.edu/intranet/committees/FacDevCom/accesspg.htm,
click "Cl. 1," and you'll be right back here.
Remember that you'll be able to go only to classes that met during the last
couple of weeks and not classes either earlier than that, or later than the
current date. The principal purpose of this is to keep the class roughly
together so that everyone will be approximately together in newsgroup and chat
discussions. So there is something of a two-week "window of opportunity" for
attending each class. You might want to bookmark the class access page so you
do not have to remember the address and type it in each time you go to a class.
If you lose track of the class numbers, you can always go back to the schedule
that shows dates and topics as well as class numbers. That's here in the
syllabus, and there's a link button entitled "schedule" under the banner at the
top of each class page to make that super-easy.
Students need a quick and
easy way of accessing classes. The two-week period for attending classes is (1) to keep
students roughly together in newsgroup and chat discussions, (2) to prevent students from
falling too far behind so they cannot participate effectively, and (3) to keep some students
from speeding through the material and not getting enough out of the material and participate
effectively in discussions.
- M. TODAY'S ACTIVITY
- I need some profile information from you. The past couple of semesters I've had
students e-mail that to me. But I've decided to have you post it to HyperNews (via
the "collaboration" button that I mentioned a while ago) to get you into using that.
Also, it'll serve as something of an introduction of yourself to the class. This use
of HyperNews will count as your required participation in HyperNews this week. If
there is something else you'd like to ask or comment on in HyperNews this week, you
can do that too. Remember that the once-a-week participation in collaboration is
only a minimum.
Before you go to HyperNews (collaboration), however, you need to print or hand copy
the questions that follow. When you go to HyperNews, this screen will disappear, so
unless you have a photographic memory, you'll need to copy the questions here to refer
to after you quit this screen. Anyway, these are the questions:
- What is your name?
- What is your major?
- What is your career objective?
- How many credits of coursework (not including this semester) do you have beyond high school?
- How many credits of coursework are you taking this semester?
- How many hours a week (if any) do you work at paid employment?
- What is the highest numbered English course you have taken and passed?
- Have you taken a course on the internet before this one?
- What is the most important reason why you are taking this course?
- At this point in time, what is your preference -- web courses, classroom courses, or no preference?
- What is the address of your personal home page?
- Is there anything else you'd like to comment on? If so, what?
providing John with the personal information he wants, this activity
requires students to use the newsgroup discussion forum. Earlier, to find
the class access page, students (deliberately omitted from this syllabus)
needed to e-mail John for the address of that class access page. The
address is not super-secret, but not publishing it on the Internet (the
syllabus can be viewed by anyone in the world) keeps visitors out of
classes, discussions, etc. beyond today's presentation of the course
- N. BEFORE THE NEXT CLASS
- There is no required reading, but pages 50-76 are suggested. The discussion
next time will make a little more sense if you have some background in the topics
- Start rounding up materials for the construction project. You will need
items 1, 3, 4, and 5 (or some other sharp thin knife to cut the 1" thick
Styrofoam) by the first construction project class (check the schedule).
- There will be a self-check quiz next time. If right now you took the quiz
on Class 1 (this syllabus) that you're finishing now, how do you think you'd
do? Do you remember the attendance policy? What are the requirements for
- O. RELATED NATIONAL WEB SITES
- Check these out for information related to a number of topics in the course
and for links to other sites. Sites related to specific topics of the course
are shown on class pages.
- Architectural Resources and Communications (ARC)
- Links to major product manufacturers, service providers, schools of architecture, etc.
- Builder Online
- Electronic cousin of Builder magazine.
- Building Industry Exchange (BIX)
- Links to construction-related companies, schools, etc.
- Building Online.
- Links to more than 104,000 building-related sites. Information, free samples, and more.
- Building Product Library
- AEC InfoCenter. Search for products and information in any of
several ways, including the CSI format in which topics are arranged
in this course.
- First Source Online
- Bills itself as "the most comprehensive product resource on the internet." 950 products, 3000 images.
- Home Center News
- News and analysis for the home improvement building material industry.
- National Association of Home Builders
- National Association of Women in Construction
- National Building Museum
- Permanent and temporary exhibitions, design and construction artifacts,
tours of landmark buildings, publications, etc. Created by an act of Congress.
- This Old House Magazine
- Encyclopedia of projects, tools, and products, FAQ's, news, and links.
Materials by McGraw-Hill Sweets
- Comprehensive construction resource guide. Easy-to-use table of
- Related Hawaii Web Sites:
- Hawaii Design, Repair and Construction Network. Links to
Hawaii materials and construction companies.