5 Connect Tips for the New Year

By McGraw-Hill Higher Education

January 4, 2018

5 Connect Tips for the New Year

A new spring semester is almost upon us, so start the New Year off right and use some of these easy Connect tips to get up and running.

  1. Don't Start from Scratch – Get a Sample Course or Duplicate Your Own from Last Year

    The start of any new semester is usually chaotic, busy, and stressful. The last thing anyone wants to do is sit down and spend several hours redesigning a brand new digital course. Good news! With Connect you don't have it start from scratch.

    New User – using Connect in your course for the first time? Great! If your entire department is using Connect there's a high probability that McGraw-Hill Education has worked with your department chair to build a Connect course to fit your curriculum and standard syllabus. Ask your department chair if they can “copy” you that course in Connect.

    If your department hasn't created a Connect course for your standard syllabus no problem. McGraw-Hill Education has pre-created Connect courses for nearly every discipline available and we can easily copy them to you to get started. Just reach out to your local McGraw-Hill Education sales rep to get what you need.

    Returning User – welcome back! If you've used Connect in a previous semester and want to keep or modify your previous course and assignments there's a very simple, fast way to do so.

    Log in to your Connect account, find the course section you'd like to reuse for this semester, on the far right side of that Connect section will be a gear icon. Click on the gear icon to reveal a drop down menu and then click on the option “duplicate section”. Rename the section to identify it for this new semester.

    Voila! All of your previous semester assignments have now copied over in to a brand new section for you to use for this semester. All that's left to do is log in to the section and change the due dates on your assignments.

    Rinse and repeat these same steps for additional courses you may be teaching this semester.

  2. Online Training Resources – Getting Started and Advanced Features

    Getting back in the swing of things after winter break can be hard. While Connect is designed to be intuitive and user-friendly, sometimes a quick training refresher or online step-by-step instructions are helpful to answer your questions.

    Online Videos & Step-by-Step Articles

    Online Training or Speak to Your Local MHE Rep

  3. Stagger and/or “Benchmark” Your Due Dates

    Students often overestimate how much time they have available to get all of their coursework done. Within Connect you can customize each and every assignment's availability and due dates to fit your syllabus. Staggering due dates, such as making 1 – 2 assignments available while holding back the rest of the semester's assignments until the following week/month – often helps students focus on the immediate course assignment needs. If students know something will be available to be started on Wednesday and then due by Friday, rather than available for the next two weeks, they're more apt to prioritize that work. The best part is that Connect allows instructors to give extensions (both to individual students and the whole class) if needed.

    Benchmarking is another great way to help students manage their workload before key midterm or high-stake exams. The general idea is to frontload several assignments early in the semester, potentially pushing students to complete a lot of their work or practice exercises before an important test or midterm comes around. The benefits of this are students are more prepared and ideally perform better on the high-stakes test. The other benefit is that students who are struggling are identified by Connect and the instructor quickly – before they perform potentially poorly on a high-stakes test. If students hit an instructor determined “benchmark” of success – such as finishing all the assignments, getting a 70% or above on all exercises, etc. – before the big test it's often a good indicator that students will perform well on the later, high-stakes assessments.

  4. Points = Participation

    Students want to learn. That's why they're college, right?! But often they can get distracted from doing all the necessary practice work needed to help them truly understand and apply the course subject matter.

    Connect's adaptive tools will help personalize different practice exercises for each individual and ensure they're getting help on the subject areas they need. In order to ensure students take these practice exercises, make sure to put some weight behind them in the form of points towards their overall grade. Depending on the amount of assignments, try making Connect worth 10 – 20% of your students' grade.

  5. Don't Play Tech Support – Make McGraw-Hill Education Do That

    You have enough to do. If a technical issue should arise – anything as simple as a lost password to something more complicated – have your students contact McGraw-Hill Education's technical support team for assistance.

    McGraw-Hill Education Technical Support

    Hours of Operation:
    Sunday: 12:00 PM to 12:00 AM EST
    Monday-Thursday: 24 hrs
    Friday: 12:00 AM to 9:00 PM EST
    Saturday: 10:00 AM to 8:00 PM EST

    Phone: (800) 331-5094

    Online Help: https://mhedu.force.com/CXG/s/