While time management is a challenge in taking any class, in a web-based class you do not have regularly scheduled meetings with your class colleagues and professor to prompt you to stay on track. As a graduate class, EDF 500 is a reading-intensive and writing-intensive course. In a web environment, the introductory materials to each of your readings lead you into each reading and link the concepts to your previous assignments; it is imperative that you read all this online material because it serves as a combination of study guide and lecture notes.
Arizona Board of Regents guidelines (which reflect national guidelines) state the expectation of 3 hours of study for EACH classroom hour. Each 3-credit university class equates to 45 face-to-face hours, with an expectation of 135 hours of homework study. So, in addition to those 135 hours, in a 3-credit web-based class, you can expect to work the 45 hours of what is considered to be "classroom time." Total the 135 homework study hours and the 45 hours of instructional time, and you have 180 hours. What does this mean? For your weekly study, you should plan 11.5 hours of work on the class per week for each of the 16 weeks of the semester. That is an average of about 2.5 hours per weekday.
This certainly varies within a class—some weeks you may spend more, some weeks you may spend less. Understand that doing A-level work may require more time; your familiarity with the web environment is assumed (if you must work on your technical computer skills, that will add more time); if reading graduate-level texts independently is not comfortable for you, that will also add more time. Within the first two weeks of class, I suggest you find 2 or 3 online study partners from among your class colleagues. You can share papers, ideas, and questions with your group throughout the class, and this will be a helpful way to augment the classwide discussions.
The class texts are rich with meaning and with substantive ideas that will add to your understandings of the role of schools in society. Your own previous experiences in education, whether as a student or educator, will help you understand the complexities of the course as well as the complexities of those experiences. Like all courses, this one is an adventure. After you read the syllabus, consider the level of commitment this course requires for you to participate in the adventure!
When you send me your introductory email introducing yourself and indicating you have read the syllabus and understand and agree to the course requirements, I will consider that this agreement includes your understanding of the time commitment necessary for the successful completion of this course of study.