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Distance Education
FAQs


Why an online class?
Online courses were developed to increase access to Lamar State College Port Arthur courses students who cannot attend campus-based classes because of work, family responsibilities, or because of distance from campus.

Can anyone enroll for online classes?
Students who are current Lamar State College Port Arthur students can enroll in an online course after consulting with their advisor. Students new to Lamar State College must first apply for admission to the college. Registration for online courses is conducted at the same time as campus-based courses.

How much does it cost to take an online class?
The cost of taking online classes is the same as for the traditional classroom. There is an extra fee that covers each of your online courses for that term. Financial aid is available for online courses for qualifying students.

How are online classes conducted?
Online classes are conducted using a learning management system called Blackboard Learn. When a student logs in to My.LamarPA.edu, a link to each online course that he/she is enrolled in will be visible under the My Courses tab. The link takes the student to his/her virtual classroom. There, the student can read class announcements, check for homework assignments, view the course syllabus and communicate with the instructor and other students through a variety of tools such as e-mail, messaging, discussion boards, wikis or blogs.

What do I need to take an online class?
A student taking online courses should have ready access to a personal computer with a broadband internet connection. The following hardware are the minimum specifications required to work Blackboard Learn: PC or Macintosh with Windows 7 or 8; or Mac OS X or later and 1 GB of free disk space recommended. The current version of Microsoft Office is required for office technology courses. You can check your systems compatibility here (<-hyperlink to Blackboard browser check page).

Is there an orientation?
There is a face-to-face orientation offered by each instructor for every online class at the beginning of each term. The instructors go over the syllabus, what the student should expect, and the course structure. The orientations are generally about an hour long and are held the first week of class. The orientations are optional for the students but are a good way to meet the instructor and other students in the class and ask questions they might not realize they have.

What are the time requirements for online classes?
To complete online classroom participation, reading assignments, research projects, homework, presentations and various reports, the typical student will usually devote around 10 hours per online course per week. For students taking online courses in the 8 week format, this figure will need to be adjusted to 12 – 15 hours per week per course due to the compressed nature of those courses.

What is an 8 week session?
Eight week sessions were developed for people who wish to take courses over a shorter, more intensive eight-weeks, instead of a longer traditional semester. The shorter term allows a student to finish classes sooner and complete their degree plan faster. Or simply make-up a class they had to drop in the long semester.

How to register for an online class
If you have any questions about how to enroll in an online course, please contact us at 409-984-6186



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Lamar State College - Port Arthur - 1500 Procter Street, Port Arthur, TX 77641 - (409) 983-4921 - 1-800-477-5872

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