The CATE system is easy enough for most instructors to learn about personal homepages and section homepages and some other basic tools without any training at all.
However, for anyone delving into the more sophisticated modules -- such as online testing, gradebooks, Message Boards, etc -- it's usually a good idea to participate in our training sessions. That's especially true for anyone planning to create and teach an online class.
The CATE online courseware package comprises a series of interconnected modules ranging from the basic (such as Personal Homepages and Section Homepages) to the advanced (such as Communications and Gradebooks).
Our training workshops are structured to cover the entire system (although we look at some components only briefly) in a series of nine sessions. Each session deals with one or more of the modules.
The workshops are arranged so that the earliest ones cover the easiest and most commonly used modules while the later workshops cover the more advanced modules. For example, almost everyone can easily understand and utilize personal homepages, which are covered in the first workshop. On the other hand, class message boards and gradebooks are more sophisticated and not utilized by as many instructors, so they're not covered until the final workshops.
Each workshop also builds on the material presented in all the previous sessions, so in a sense this training is like studying addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division in succession.
That means almost all instructors attend the first couple of workshops, but fewer folks attend as we move closer to the end. Many instructors only need to build personal homepages and section homepages, so they only join us for the first two workshops. Instructors planning to teach online classes -- but not many others -- typically attend all nine workshops so they'll have a good grasp of the entire system.
Therefore, you need not commit to all the workshops-- just the ones that cover the modules you want to use.
A word of caution is nevertheless in order. In the same way that you wouldn't skip classes on addition and subtraction and try to jump straight into calculus, don't skip the early workshops if you're planning to attend the more advanced ones.
WWII 101 A plain-vanilla sample class website
Rock 101 A fancier sample class website
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