Distance Education FAQ

General Questions

Q1: What sort of accreditation does the PM department hold and how will my degree be applicable in the work field?

Q2: I do not live in Alaska. Am I able to take Classes from the PM Department?

Q3: Can I receive the same quality of education via distance learning as I can get by attending class in person?

Q4: What sort of components will I need to take a class via distance education?

Q5: I have everything I need, how do I join the class?

Q6: I have limited computer skills, will this be a problem?

Q7: How do I turn in my assignments as a distance student and receive instructor feedback?

Q8: What is Blackboard and how can I access it?

Q9: I travel a lot on business trips often. Will this conflict?

Q10: What if I can’t sort the system out once classes begin? What sort of accommodations will be made to assist me?

Application for Admission

Q11. How far in advance must I apply?

Q12. How do I apply for the MSPM Program?

Q13. What must I submit with my application?

Q14. How can I check the status of my application?

Q15. Is the cost for distance students different from the cost for local students?

Q1. What sort of accreditation does the PM department hold and how will my degree be applicable in the work field?
A:

PMI Registered Education Provider, since December 2002
NWCCU Accredited ESPM Program, since November 2003

In October 2007 the PM department at University of Alaska Anchorage received global accreditation from the Project Management Institute (PMI). An MSPM Degree is applicable in almost every Science, Engineering or Project field as effective management is such a vital part of success.
View our accreditation letter

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Q2. I do not live in Alaska. Am I able to take classes from the PM Department?
A:

Yes, the MSPM Program is designed to leverage its distance learning capability and has had students participate via real-time video-conference in California, Fairbanks, Florida, Juneau, Kodiak, New Orleans, the North Slope, Valdez and South Korea. In addition, we can provide short courses using the same distance technology.

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Q3. Can I receive the same quality of education via distance learning as I can get by attending class in person?
A:

The class content is identical whether you are attending remotely or not. A remote student's class experience can be like attending in person if the remote student meets the minimum system requirements and is willing to participate, learn, and produce high quality results.

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Q4.  What sort of components will I need to take a class via distance education?
A: 

As a remote student, classes are accessible to you real-time through Movi (or Skype as a fallback).

To utilize this you will need a computer with a broadband internet connection (a public wireless connection is not recommended), a camera (webcam, built into some laptops), a microphone (built into headsets or some webcams / laptops), and either ear-buds, headphones, a headset, or a full-duplex speakerphone with echo and noise-canceling technology.

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Q5.  I have everything I need, how do I join the class?
A: 

Please follow the link below and submit a request form with UA’s Video Conferencing Services (or call them at 1-800-910-9601 for assistance) to enable you to use Movi and attend classes remotely using Movi.
http://www.alaska.edu/oit/services/video-conferencing/desktop-collaboration/

Otherwise please contact our Distance Education Coordinator:
Andrew Tibor
Office Phone: (907)786-1884
Fax Line: (907)786-1935
E-mail: altibor@uaa.alaska.edu

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Q6.  I have limited computer skills, will this be a problem?
A: 

If you have the skill to reach this FAQ and the patience to work with one of our knowlegable and helpful Audio & Video technicians, you should have no trouble getting setup and participating in class. Rest assured if trouble comes up the PM department will work closely with you to help resolve any technical issues. 

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Q7.  How do I turn in my assignments as a distance student and receive instructor feedback?
A:  Assignments for distance students will be turned in via Blackboard. Interaction with instructors and feedback can be obtained through live connections during class sessions, emails, blackboard forums and phone conferencing.
Click here for a Blackboard tutorial.

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Q8.  What is Blackboard and how can I access it?
A:  Blackboard is a course management system that allows dynamic learning to occur in the online environment. The tools provided by the Blackboard software allow students and faculty to post and share documents and other course content, write via email and posted discussion boards, and even have synchronous, or "real-time" conversations in a virtual classroom. 
Click here for a Blackboard tutorial.

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Q9. I travel a lot on business trips often. Will this conflict?
A. All class lectures are recorded and available for viewing on Blackboard within an hour after the class lecture ends. Please note that this sort of delivery of information is intended as a safety net for missed classes or enhancements to review material again, not as a replacement for attending in person or via webcam. If you plan to take a class with limited real time connection special approval of the instructor is required.

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Q10. What if I can’t sort the system out once classes begin? What sort of accommodations will be made to assist me?
A. A few provisions are in place to help prospective students unsure if the PM department is right for them. A prospective student may take up to 3 classes as a non-degree seeking student without having to apply to the MSPM degree program. This helps ensure students get a feel for classes and course materials before they have to go through the process of applying to the program. Also, if after a week, the student does not feel the class will work out for whatever reason, a full refund of all tuition and fees will be given.  

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Q11. How far in advance must I apply?
A. Always allow enough time for your application to be processed before the commencement of the semester. The semester dates at UAA are available in an online schedule at http://www.uaa.alaska.edu/records/catalogs/schedules.cfm. International students should allow up to four months between the time you first send your application to UAA and the beginning of the semester. As an example, for international students, if you want to register for the fall semester beginning in August, submit your application in April.

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Q12. How do I apply for the MSPM Program?
A. Applications can be made online on the UAA website. http://www.uaa.alaska.edu/admissions/apply_for_admission.cfm
This is the UAA link incorporating a ‘registration wizard’, an online resource that can guide you in completing your application. International students must fill out a paper-based application by selecting this option from the UAA website, http://www.uaa.alaska.edu/admissions/printed_application_forms.cfm. Once you have verified that the application deadline for the semester you are seeking admission in has not passed, you can fill out your applications online. Always allow 24 hours after your application submission to obtain a student ID number. This student ID number will be used in most of your correspondence with the UAA. Non-degree seeking students can also apply for admission from the UAA admissions website, http://www.uaa.alaska.edu/admissions/apply_for_admission.cfm.

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Q13. What must I submit with my application?
A. Please refer to our application checklist (UAA New Student Checklist) to make sure that all the relevant materials are included for your application to be processed. Remember that you need to satisfy both the UAA requirements and the Department requirements for admission. Submit the following to UAA Admissions:
• UAA Application
• Transcripts showing successful completion of a relevant undergraduate degree and completion of statistics course submitted to enrollment services
• 3 letters of recommendation submitted directly by the authors to pm@uaa.alaska.edu
• Statement of Purpose (2-pages discussing your background, career goals, expected timeline for program study and any additional pertinent information)

Click here for a guide.

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Q14. How can I check the status of my application?
A. You can check the status of your application at UA Online at uaonline.alaska.edu. Click “Login to Secured Area” and follow the instructions to access your secure UAA account. You can then check the status of your application as well as register for classes and obtain schedules for the classes you are registered in. 

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Q15. Is the cost for distance students different from the cost for local students?
A.

The cost of tuition is the same whether the student attends remotely or in person. Students who are not residents of Alaska pay a non-resident surcharge on tuition.

Please see our Tuition Rates page for more details.

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