Hallo, und Willkommen bei German Online! This introductory page will explain to you how to access and use your German Course. Please read this page carefully, and contact us if you have any questions.
German Online is now integrated with NCVPS, meaning that you will access German Online just like you will your other online courses. Simply put in your NCVPS login information here and find your German course among your other online courses.
Students who are new to NCVPS and Canvas are encouraged to work through the NCVPS Getting Started Unit. This will explain how Canvas works and allow you to submit some sample assignments to test your knowledge. However, the NCVPS Getting Started Unit is not part of your grade, so if you have already taken a Canvas course and are familiar with how it works, you do not need to work through this unit.
Before getting into your German course proper, you will be required to complete the German Online introductory materials. Luckily, you’re already here! Carefully read the rest of this page, then go take our Introductory Quiz. The questions on this quiz are based on this information here. We will show you how to get to the Introductory Quiz below!
Almost all of your course materials will be accessible by clicking the “Course Materials” icon. After you click on the icon, you will see a list of the chapters for the course. For each chapter you have two links, one for the Daily Assignments and one for the Graded Material for that chapter.
The first link will take you to the Daily Assignments document, which will give you a day-by-day plan of what you need to accomplish in our course, as well as links to any worksheets, videos, sound files, or computer exercises you will need.
The second link will take you to your Graded Material. You should take these assignments only when prompted to by the Course Materials document, in order to ensure that you are prepared.
As you work through the course, you will be required to complete worksheets which we will provide. You can complete these documents in Microsoft Word or a comparable word processor on your computer, or you can print them out and complete them by hand.
Unlike German 1 and 2, your worksheets for this course will be graded by our team of tutors. At the end of each chapter, you will need to upload those worksheets to the corresponding assignment under the “Graded Materials” section for that chapter.
German 3 and 4 are built around reading, writing, and speaking German as much as possible. If a question is asked in German, we expect you to answer in German as well, using your own words. If at all possible, your answers should be a complete sentences or thoughts. If we notice that you over-rely on quotes or one-word answers, you will lose points.
The worksheets will also be graded more strictly than your quizzes and tests. We will do our best to provide detailed and constructive feedback so that you can correct your worksheets and resubmit them for a higher grade. To balance out the stricter grading, you will have as many attempts on the worksheets as you need. The goal is to point out and correct as many mistakes as possible, so that you will hopefully make them less often as you progress.
If you have any questions regarding your worksheets or our feedback to them, please do not hesitate to contact us (phone: 1-800-423-6493, email: firstname.lastname@example.org, or Skype: German Online in Stillwater, OK; or through Canvas messaging).
Quizzes, Writing Assignments, and Tests
You will periodically be required to take quizzes, writing assignments, and tests. Unless otherwise noted in the instructions, you are not allowed to have worksheets, videos, or any outside materials on hand while taking these. You are also not allowed to collaborate with other students.
To ensure that students do not cheat, each test is password-protected. You will get the passwords for your assignments from your local Distance Learning Advisor or Course Facilitator. If you do not know who that is, please call us immediately.
You make take each assignment two times. However, you must score at least a 30% on a quiz or writing assignment to qualify for the second attempt, and for tests you will need to score at least a 40%. Before you take your second attempt, we highly recommend that you look at your first attempt, which you can access either by clicking on your usual quiz link. We will do our best to leave clear feedback. If you have questions on the feedback or feel that your test has been misgraded, please call us immediately.
It is imperative that you stay on schedule, and to that end, quizzes and tests do have deadlines. While we will not penalize you for turning in late work, we do periodically lock old content. If you are unable to move forward in the course, for this or for any reason, please call us immediately.
German 3 students will be required to take one speaking test during the course, while German 4 students will be required to take two. When prompted to by your Course Material document, please call us at 1-800-423-6493 during our office hours to do so. For each speaking test, you will be expected to read a short passage in German. Then we will ask some questions, which you will also be expected to answer in German.
Speaking tests are mandatory, and you will not be able to move on to later material until they are complete. If some circumstance prevents you from being able to take speaking tests, please have your facilitator contact us.
You will be required to complete a number of additional projects as well. These can range from short essays to posters to recording video or audio reports. Just like with your worksheets, you can have as many attempts on these projects as you wish. You will submit these under the Graded Materials link, which you can access from your Course Home Page by clicking the “Course Materials” Document and then finding the corresponding chapter.
While not mandatory, we do offer free weekly tutoring sessions to all students. Group tutoring is offered through Collaborate Ultra, which can be accessed via the link under the course Home Page. For students unable to attend the scheduled Collaborate Ultra sessions, or for those who want additional assistance, we do also offer one-on-one tutoring via Skype or telephone. If you opt to do individual tutoring, call us during our office hours (1-800-423-6493) to schedule a time.
Scheduling and Deadlines
As already noted, it is imperative that you do your best to stay on schedule. Falling behind makes it more difficult to complete the course and forces you to overwork, which hurts the learning process. It may also lead to assignments closing and require you to call us to have them unlocked.
While we will not penalize you for late work, we are required to submit progress reports to NCVPS. These grades are calculated based on where you should be in the course, meaning that if you have fallen behind, your progress report grade may appear to be very low. The progress report grades will have no bearing on the final grade we report to NCVPS at the end of the course, but depending on your school’s policy, they may count against you.
Typing Special Characters
German uses several letters which do not exist on an English keyboard. It is extremely important that you be able to enter these letters, as sometimes having a special letter drastically changes the meaning of a word. You can find instructions on entering these characters here.
Translators and Dictionaries
The use of translators is strictly forbidden, as we regard it to be cheating. If we notice translator use, we will fail you on the assignment and notify your school. If we notice repeat use of translators, assignments will be given a zero, with no possibility to retake them and we will again get into contact with your school.
Although we do not forbid the use of dictionaries, we do urge extreme caution if you decide to make use of one. It may seem unintuitive, but dictionaries often get in the way of learning, rather than helping it.
A critical skill in learning a foreign language is to find creative ways to express your thoughts, despite a limited vocabulary. Doing so may require more sentences and more advanced grammatical constructs, but it also allows you to practice and develop a better feel for the language.
For an English example, consider the word “irredentist.” This is a perfectly valid English word that sees almost no use. If someone learning English could make the very easy sentence, “He was an irredentist”, but if they couldn’t make the sentence “He wanted his country to reclaim its former territory”, does that person really have a good understanding of English?
Avoiding dictionaries where possible will also allow you to avoid the pitfalls of word-for-word translation. We oftentimes find that when students look up words, they tend to simply write sentences in English and then try to translate them word-for-word into German, which is neither a good way to learn a language nor a good way to make accurate German sentences.
If you are absolutely stuck and can’t say what you want to with the vocabulary we give you, we would prefer you to call and speak with one of our tutors. If you do decide to make use of a dictionary, it may also be a good idea and speak with one of our tutors and discuss strategies for using a dictionary effectively.
If you have any questions over any portion of your course, please contact us immediately. You can reach us via our phone number during our office hours (1-800-423-6493), via Canvas message, or via e-mail.
Our course is designed to work best with Mozilla Firefox (30+) and Google Chrome (45+). You may run into issues when using a different browser, such as Internet Explorer, Edge, or Safari.