Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Disaster planning in distance education

Do you know what would happen to your online education if a disaster strikes? You might lose power, Internet, have to evacuate, etc. and not be able to attend your courses. Do you have a plan to let the class know you will be out of touch? Have you backed up your computer (off site, preferably) so that you won't loose work if you computer is damaged (water, lightning, theft)?

And what if your institution looses power? You might be fine, but wondering why you can't log into anything. Do you know how to check if your campus is closed? (I have gotten calls and emails from out of state students wondering why they can't get in touch with anyone. Well, we haven't been around to answer the phone and the server's been down. No, really.)

So take a few minutes to enter a classmate's or professor's email address and/or phone number into your phone, back up your work, and check how your campus alerts the community in emergencies. If bad weather is expected, post that. At least you won't have disappeared without a trace as far as your online class is concerned.