Online New Student Orientation Program
College of the Canyons, Santa Clarita Community College District
26455 Rockwell Canyon Road, Santa Clarita, CA 91355

Attending college is challenging enough. Some college-bound students can be overwhelmed by the transition from High School to College. To help with the change, colleges and universities use orientation courses, typically a pre-requisite to registration, to inform students about expectations, standards, services, and campus life.

COC found Cynosure via a search it conducted of other Southern California community college web sites and their employment of online new student orientation courseware. After visiting the Los Angeles Pierce College orientation program, developed by Cynosure the year before, their inquiry with Transfer Director Elizabeth McCormick, finally connected them to Cynosure.

Using both Pierce and the Miramar College online orientation programs as a base COC looked to take their program to the next level - a little more unique - a little more interactive.

Based on the premise of a campus tour or journey, viewers select campus destinations from an interactive map. Along the way to this destination students are presented with orientation content in the form of text, graphics, animation, audio, and video. They even encounter fellow students who pose problems for which the viewer must select an appropriate solution, called situation screens. These situation screens are used to test mastery of the material instead of the traditional end of course quiz.

Viewers attending the orientation for credit towards registration must visit a select set of campus destinations, and therefore situation screens, to ensure they are presented all of the required information.

This project is currently in development with production scheduled for September 2005 and launch in time for the Winter 2006 quarter enrollments.

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