REQUIRED MATERIAL(s):

To be able to participate fully in assignments and exams; you must have:

  • Meet the minimum requirements for computer hardware. University computer requirements are listed here and you may also need access to a webcam and headset microphone.
  • Reliable and speedy Internet access. Online coursework requires you have reliable Internet access and fast connection speed, as you will be taking online tests. High-speed Internet connection is required, but a wired connection is preferred, especially while taking tests.
  • Computer competency. You must be very comfortable with: using email & discussion boards; uploading and downloading documents; and accessing resources such as search engines and websites (e.g., Google, etc.).

REQUIRED TECHNOLOGY AND/OR SOFTWARE:

Blackboard Learning Management System:  Access to the Blackboard Learning Management System.  Login with the Blackboard username and password credentials.

Obtaining Your Blackboard Login Credentials

If you are new to Blackboard and/or are not aware of your Blackboard login credentials, follow the steps below.

  1. Complete instructions can be found on Self-Service Carolina Help at Self-Service Carolina Help.

  2. Follow the instructions below for getting your network username (for Blackboard) and to set your password in my.sc.edu:

    1. Go to SC Authentication Service.

    2. Login with your VIP ID and password.

    3. Your USC Network Username will be displayed.

    4. Below that, you will see a place to enter a new password.  You must type in the password twice to verify your choice. 

    5. Password restrictions must be at least eight characters, cannot contain your user id, and must meet at least three of the following:

      • One or more lowercase alphabetic characters (a-z)

      • One or more uppercase alphabetic characters (A-Z)

      • One or more numeric characters (0-9)

      • One or more special characters (!@#$%^&*-+= etc.)

    6. Click on the SET PASSWORD button to set your new password. Remember, your password may not work right away. It can take as long as 30 minutes before it is valid on Blackboard.

Microsoft Office 365: Access to the following software applications may be required to complete various course assignments.  Your online professor will inform you on which applications are required for his/her course.

  • Word
  • Excel
  • Access
  • PowerPoint
  • Publisher
  • One Note
  • OneDrive
  • Outlook

If you do not have access to the applications, faculty, staff, and students have FREE access to Microsoft Office 365. It can be installed on up to five devices, including your home computer:

  • Windows and Mac laptops and computers
  • iOS, Android and Windows tablets and phones

Setup is easy and the software configures itself based on the @usca.edu email address used to access the download site. Installations on laptops and desktops now include the same Office programs you enjoy on your campus computer: Office 2013 for Windows systems and Office 2011 for Macs.

OneDrive for Business is also included giving you 1TB of cloud storage free of charge.

Full information and download instructions can be found on the Office 365 page of the Help Desk website.

Adobe Connect:  If your professor requires the use of Adobe Connect, access to a high-speed Internet access, Webcam, and a headset with microphone (unless your computer or laptop has built in speakers) will be needed to participate in the Adobe Connect synchronous class sessions.  Your professor will provide instructions on your role as a participant or presenter in the environment.  Refer to the Participate and/or the Host handout for instructional use.  The Adobe Connect meeting room link for your course will be provided by your professor.  It is highly recommended that you are using a wired Internet connection.  If not, you should be as close as possible to the wireless router. The loss of Internet connection will result in a disconnection in your synchronous session and you will have to re-enter the meeting room.

Skype:  If your professor requires the use of Skype, access to a high-speed Internet access, Webcam, and a headset with microphone (unless your computer or laptop has built in speakers) will be needed to participate in the Skype synchronous class sessions. Skype is a tool that can be used to communicate with faculty members and with other students. Visit Skype's web site to download the application (be sure to select the appropriate download for PC or Mac). If you are using Skype for the first time, you will need to download the software to your computer and set up a profile account. Follow the installation instructions for downloading, installing, and logging in to Skype. Review the Using Skype handout to learn how to add contacts, create groups, and/or chat using your web cam.  If used, your professor will share his/her Skype username with you.

SafeAssign:  USC Aiken is committed to helping students uphold the ethical standards of academic integrity in all areas of study. Students agree that their enrollment in this course allows the professor the right to use electronic devices to help prevent plagiarism. Professors may elect to have students submit assignments to the Blackboard’s Safe Assign feature and will be included as source documents in Safe Assign’s restricted access database solely for the purpose of detecting plagiarism in such documents.

TurnItIn:  The University of South Carolina Aiken is committed to helping students uphold the ethical standards of academic integrity in all areas of study. Students agree that their enrollment in this course allows the professor the right to use electronic devices to help prevent plagiarism. All course materials are subject to submission to Turnitin.com and will be included as source documents in Turnitin.com's restricted access database solely for the purpose of detecting plagiarism in such documents. Turnitin.com will be used as an academic tool to help students avoid plagiarism in written documents.  If your professor will use TurnItin, he/she will provide you with the following login credentials and other information.

Obtaining your Turnitin.com Login Credentials

Turnitin.com will be used to submit a first draft and a final draft of your Analytical Research Essay at the end of the semester.  We will also use Turnitin.com to complete a peer-review exercise.  For these assignments, Turnitin.com will be used as an academic tool to help students avoid plagiarism and be aware of their appropriate use of outside sources. To access our section of English 101 on Turnitin.com, follow the steps below:

  • Go to Turnitin.com
  • Create an account using your own email address and password (tip: use your school email address here to keep your schoolwork organized!)
  • Click on the tab “Enroll in a Class”
  • Enter the following information:
    • Class/section ID: xxxxxxx
    • Enrollment Password: xxxxxxx

Respondus LockDown Browser:  To increase the integrity of online tests, professors may elect to use the Respondus Lockdown Browser, which creates a "locked" testing environment that prevents you from viewing other web pages, accessing other applications, and printing or copying the assessments. If instructed, you must download and install LockDown Browser before you take any exams. The Respondus Install and Use Quick Start Guide provides information on the installation and usage of Lockdown Browser.  

Note:  When taking assessments:

  • Be sure to close ALL applications on your computer and double-click on the Respondus Lockdown Browser icon to open the application. Log into Blackboard, access your course, and navigate to the assessment.
  • The preferred browsers to use for an assessment or PC users are Mozilla Firefox or Google Chrome.  For Mac users, Mozilla Firefox is the best.
  • Students should seek a computer with a wired connection.  If using a wireless connection, be sure to be close enough to the wireless router that has the strongest signal.
  • Students cannot use the back button in the browser.  It will cause many problems with the assessment.

Online Requirements and Support Resources

System & Technical Requirements

Please click and review the System & Technical Requirements information to identify the list of supported browsers and other technical and skill requirements that you will need in order to enjoy the full functionality of the course.  The handout provides necessary information on Blackboard supported web browsers, skill requirements, links to free multimedia plugins, and the Computer Services Help Desk.  Take this opportunity to review the for the Blackboard Help link for students relating to many of the common features you will use in Blackboard. 

Your online course will require a high-speed Internet connection.  You must have speakers installed and working properly on your computer before beginning the course.  Participation in an online course requires some basic knowledge of computer technology.

Technical Support                     

To obtain assistance with technical issues (removing pop-up blockers, opening pages or quizzes, etc.), or if you are unable to see the course content or have other questions regarding the course itself, please visit the USC Aiken Computer Services Help Desk, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or call 803-641-3391.

Updated: 01/11/2017