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Start-up Notes


You are looking for synchronous (real-time) Internet delivery of your course . This page contains information that is needed by students before the first meeting.

The specific terms of Internet attendance will be announced by your instructor. As an example, the rules in some courses are: all students have the option to attend any class in person or over the Net, but no one takes the exams over the Net; Internet students are expected to attend all classes and may come to the classroom if there is space; all registered students can replay the recordings made of every class.

The distance education software we will be using is called Moodle Integrated Synchronous Teaching and Conferencing (MISTC ). It consists of a collection of open source tools, integrated using software developed at GMU. You can learn more at the MISTC home page. At present the MISTC client runs on Windows computers (Windows XP, Vista and 7) and Mac OS X computers. It provides the instructor's voice and graphics in real time, and has an option for video if you have high-capacity Internet service such as cable modem or DSL. If you have a microphone that works with your computer's sound setup, you can ask spoken questions during the meeting, even with only a dialup connection.

Before you attend a meeting over the network, you will need to install the MISTC client software and check that (1) it works on your computer and (2) your Internet connection is good enough to support real time class delivery. To be good enough, it does not have to be high capacity; 56k modem service is enough, but it must not be overloaded at meeting time or the sound delivery will be unacceptable. Be sure to make this test for overload at the time of day of your meeting.

If the sound quality is poor, you have the option to use a dial-up connection to GMU (703-426-2468) with your GMU username and password (as used on OSF1). The software is available online and includes a recorded introduction that runs on the client and can be used to test your Internet connection. If you have trouble with the installation, look at our FAQs page. You will log on to Moodle with your GMU username and password and connect to your course with through Moodle. Your instructor will provide you an enrollment key for this purpose.

We are looking forward to your successful association with the MISTC system. If you have questions about your course, ask your instructor or coordinator. If you have problems with MISTC , send email to Please include your course number, your OS, your browser, a description of your problem and, if appropriate, a screen shot.

Last updated: 03/23/2011