Current Students

Orientation Module 1: An Introduction

Video Transcript:
  1. Welcome to Piedmont Technical College’s new student orientation.  We’re thrilled that you chose PTC, and we’re excited about the possibilities that are out there for you with a college education.

  2. As you get started, there are some things you need to know. This orientation is designed to give you the information you’ll need to successfully navigate your college career, all the way through to graduation. This online version of orientation consists of several segments, or “modules,” all of which supply information which is crucial for your college journey.

  3. In this first module, we will cover several basic topics: differences between course formats, the course syllabus, the role of your instructors, an explanation of advisement, and some important resources for your academic success.

  4. At Piedmont Technical College, we offer a variety of course delivery methods to help you schedule your classes in a way that works for you. The formats range from the traditional classroom method you’re probably familiar with, to online and hybrid courses.

  5. PTC offers a wide variety of courses in the format you’re probably familiar with from high school or college, if you’ve taken any previous college courses. These courses consist of face-to-face instruction in a classroom with an instructor. When you’re registering for classes, these will appear as “Lecture” courses under the “Type” heading in the Class Schedule Listing on Pathway.

  6. We’re very focused on making sure you have the skills you need to succeed in your chosen career, so most of our programs offer a variety of Lab classes, where you’ll get hands-on experience with what you’re learning in the classroom.  Some classes do this on campus in a lab environment, while others may take students to locations off-campus to learn in a “real world” setting. Courses with a  lab component appear  with “Lab” under the type heading.

  7. Because PTC has a location in seven different counties, we’ve developed a technology called PEN, which stands for Piedmont Educational Network.  The PEN is a fiber-optic network that permits an instructor to teach the course on one PTC campus, while some of the students may be located at another campus.  This method of instruction resembles a television broadcast, but students and instructors have the capability to communicate to each other through the PEN so questions may be answered and interactive discussions can take place.

  8. PTC has been a leader in online learning for more than a decade, and we offer a full selection of online coursework. Online courses offer a tremendous amount of flexibility, and they’re a great way to learn. Before registering for one, though, keep in mind that you’ll need a reliable computer, a high-speed internet connection, and solid computer skills and the self-discipline to stay on schedule.

  9. Finally, hybrid classes are a combination of online coursework and traditional classroom interaction.  Students receive certain aspects of the course instruction online and other portions in person.  Hybrid classes require students to attend fewer sessions than a traditional class, but provide the opportunity to receive instruction and feedback from their faculty member face to face.

  10. Now that you’re enrolled, you’d probably like to know what courses you’ll have to take to complete your program. You can find your program’s required courses in the academic catalog, and on your program’s page on the college’s website.  Your schedule will be determined each term by meeting with an academic advisor who will help you choose the right courses to reach your goal. Advisement is more than registering for classes.  It involves meeting with your advisor at least once per semester to touch base and gauge your progress toward graduation.  Most academic advisors are PTC instructors and can assist you in many ways, including answering questions you may have about your major, helping you with concerns about coursework, and helping you chart a course toward completion of your program. It’s your responsibility each term to set up an advising appointment, and it is your responsibility to register for the classes the two of you determine you need to take. If you do not know who your academic advisor is, you can look it up on the PTC website under Advising.

  11. When you register for classes, there are some advantages to doing it early. At PTC, we call early registration “VIP Registration.” If you register for classes during the VIP period, your $25 registration fee will be waived, and you’ll find it much easier to get the class schedule you want.

  12. In order to make your learning experience as effective as possible, there are some guidelines we expect every student to follow.  In your student calendar and handbook, you’ll find a section that details student responsibilities, college policies, the college code of conduct and the student code for the South Carolina Technical College System. 

  13. A key classroom expectation includes the proper use of electronic devices.  Unless directed to do so by an instructor, it’s not appropriate to use, cell phones, iPods, MP3 players, pagers or other electronic devices during any class, clinical or lab activity.  Classroom use of laptops, tablets, e-readers, etc. is typically not permitted, but specific exceptions may be made by the instructor based on need and the type of class being taught. 

  14. In order to get the most out of your classes, regular attendance is vital. This includes being on time for class and not leaving class early.  Student tardiness and early departures create a distraction from the educational process. PTC has a formal attendance policy, which can be found in the Piedmont Technical College Academic Catalog.  The catalog can be found online, by requesting one in the PTC Admissions Office or by inquiring at the front desk of any county campus.

  15. For the health of students, faculty and staff, PTC is a tobacco-free college, meaning that use of tobacco in any form is not permitted anywhere on campus.

  16. As you begin classes, you will receive a course syllabus for each class.  The syllabus serves as a sort of road map for the course, providing you details about course requirements, the topics that will be covered, and much more.  The syllabus helps you know what to expect out of the class and what is expected of you.

  17. Your instructors are valuable resources, and they’re here to help you succeed.  Don’t hesitate to contact your instructors for help if you’re having trouble in class.  Instructors also have many time commitments, throughout the week, so you should contact them in advance to make an appointment.  Faculty members posts regular office hours to assist their students.

  18. If you need additional help, we also offer free tutoring. .  Each PTC student is eligible to receive one hour of tutoring a week at no charge.  You can also take advantage of open labs that are set up to let you drop in for assistance with a particular class.  Open lab times are posted on campus.  To request tutoring, submit a request on the PTC website.  Tutoring information can be found by clicking on the Current Students link on the website, and looking under College Services. Tutoring is also available for students at county campuses and for online students.

  19. In addition to the tutoring, the Information Commons, known to many as the college library, provides a number of services and resources to help your studies and research.  Ranging from printed materials, to WiFi access, to national research databases, to an open computer lab, the Information Commons has something for every student.  The Information Commons is located on floor 2 of building K on the Greenwood Campus.  Students at the county campuses can access these services in their campus resource centers. 

  20. Computers for student use are located in the Information Commons, in the TLC, or at designated locations at each county campus.  Students may use college computers only for educational purposes or for conducting college business such as registering for classes or processing financial aid applications.

  21. This concludes module 1 of new student orientation.   Please proceed to module 2 to continue the orientation process.