MWSU

Ready to Take an Online Course? Do You Have the Tools/Traits to be Successful?

To be successful in online courses you should have the correct tools, personal traits, and orientation.

To be eligible to enroll in online courses offered by Missouri Western State University, you must pass the test below with a score of 100%. You are only required pass this test once. You can take it as many times as necessary to achieve a score of 100%. You cannot back up once you have started. If you answer any questions incorrectly, you will need to re-start the test from the beginning.

Enter Your G-number:
Hide Help

Question #1

Online courses often require significant communication with peers and the instructor, not just exams. To the extent that you are not comfortable exchanging ideas in writing, you may be at a disadvantage in an online course.

Question #2

Online courses rely more on writing than verbal exchanges. Thus, writing skills are important in online courses.

Question #3

Online courses often have group chats. If chats are graded components of classes you wish to enroll in, be aware of your skills in this area.

Question #4

Online courses require self-motivation and discipline to meet course deadlines.

Question #5

Without regular face-to-face meeting times, online courses require good time management.

Question #6

If you don’t deal well with technology-related obstacles, online courses may not be the best option for you. When things go wrong, you need to be pro-active in finding solutions.

Question #7

Go to Cnet Internet Speed Test and run the test at least three times.

If you have less than 512 Kbps, you will have trouble viewing videos that your course MAY include. Preferably, your bandwidth should be at least 1.5 Mbps. If you have low bandwidth, you should communicate with the instructors for your desired online courses to determine if the courses make routine use of video clips.

Question #8

If you cannot hear the audio, you may not have a sound card in your computer, you may not have speakers or earphones, and/or may not have your audio turned on or volume turned up.

You MAY need to have audio to participate in your desired online courses.

Question #9

To view videos in MWSU courses, if you have a Windows machine you should have Windows Media Player 11 (12 preferred) or an updated VLC Video Player.

If you have a MAC you should have the most current version of Flip4Mac or VLC Video Player.

If you do not have an appropriate player, you can click on the links above to download free applications.

Question #10

You should have Internet Explorer 8 (9 or higher preferred), Firefox 4 (5 or higher preferred), Chrome 11 (12 or higher preferred), or Safari 5 or higher.

To determine your browser name and version:

    Microsoft Internet Explorer
  1. Click "Tools", or the Tools icon (looks like a sprocket).
  2. Click "About Internet Explorer". The version is displayed.
    Mozilla Firefox
  1. Click "Firefox" if your menus are disabled, next or otherwise.
  2. Click "Help".
  3. Click "About Firefox". The version is displayed, along with the option to update if needed.
    Google Chrome
  1. Click the "Customize and Control Google Chrome" icon (looks like 3 horizontal lines).
  2. Click "About Google Chrome".
  3. The version is displayed along with the option to update if needed.
    Apple Safari
  1. Click "Safari" in the menu.
  2. Click "About Safari".
  3. The version is displayed.

Question #11

Windows machines should have Windows XP SP2, or a more current operating system (e.g., Windows 7 or Windows 8).

Macs should have OS X (version 10.6 or higher preferred).

To determine your operating system version:

    PC/Microsoft Windows XP/Vista/7
  1. Click on the Start Menu icon (located in the bottom left corner of the screen.)
  2. Right click on Windows Explorer (Windows XP the label is "My Computer" and Windows Vista/7 the label is "Computer").
  3. Click on Properties in the menu that displays.
  4. The version of Windows running is displayed.
    PC/Microsoft Windows 8
  1. Click on the File Explorer icon (located in the bottom left corner of the screen.)
  2. Right click on "Computer".
  3. Click on Properties in the menu that displays.
  4. The version of Windows running is displayed.
    Apple Macintosh OSX
  1. Click on the Apple icon (located in the top left corner of the screen.)
  2. Click on "About this Mac".
  3. The version of OSX running is displayed.

Question #12

If you do not know how to attach documents and download attachments this will help in almost all cases.

  1. In your e-mail client (e.g., Gmail, Outlook) click Compose, New, Reply, or Forward. Whichever is applicable.
  2. Locate the attach File icon (in most cases it is a button that reads "Attach" or an image of a paperclip).
  3. The computer's File browser will open. Browse for the file.
  4. Click the button to attach the file (In most cases it reads "Select" or "Open" or "Attach").
  5. An icon with the file name will display to show the file is attached to the email.

Question #13

If you do not have a current office suite, you can purchase Microsoft Office from an online/local retailer, or download Apache Open Office free of charge.

If you do not know how to use the programs in the Office Suite, refer to the Help documentation that accompanies the program.

Question #14

If you do not know how to save documents in Microsoft Office format complete the following in most cases, or refer to the Help documentation that accompanies the program.

  1. Complete preparation of the document.
  2. Locate "Save As" either in the menu system in the program, or as an icon.
  3. A box displays that allows naming of the file.
  4. Under the field the file name is located in there is a drop-down menu with the Label "Save as Type" or "File Type".
  5. Select "Microsoft Office Document 97-2003(.doc)" or "Microsoft Office Document 2007-2010(.docx)" or the option similar in language to these with the file extension ".doc" or ".docx".
  6. Click the "Save" button.

Question #15

If you do not have a pdf reader, download Adobe Reader for free.

Question #16

If you do not have a webcam, purchase one from a local store that sells computer accessories, or online from a number of retailers.


1. I know that succeeding in online courses will be easier if I am comfortable expressing my opinion in writing to my peers and instructors.

Show Me More

2. I know that succeeding in online courses will be easier if I am able to express my opinion in writing so that others understand what I mean.

Show Me More

3. I know that succeeding in online courses will be easier if I can work well in a group and can actively contribute my fair share to conversations, including the evaluation of other people’s ideas.

Show Me More

4. Success in online courses will be easier if I am good at completing tasks independently (i.e., I don't need others to encourage or remind me to complete assignments).

Show Me More

5. Success in online courses will be easier if I have good time management skills.

Show Me More

6. Success in online courses will be easier if I do not give up easily when confronted with technology-related obstacles (e.g., Internet connection issues, difficulty with downloads, difficulty with locating information, unable to contact instructor immediately, etc.).

Show Me More

7. What is your internet connection bandwidth rate?

Show Me More

8. After viewing the "Perfect Griffon" - MWSU Commercial video, how much “freedom” goes into the MWSU recipe?

(*Answer with a single word response) Show Me More

9. Many online courses require access to videos. In the video referenced above, what color is the tea pot?

(*Answer with a single word response) Show Me More

10. What internet browser are you using? (both name and version)

Show Me More

11. What operating system does your computer have? (both name and version)

Show Me More

12. Do you know how to attach files to e-mails and how to download attachments received in e-mails?

Show Me More

13. I can open, edit and save documents using an office suite on my computer or online (e.g., Microsoft Office, Google Docs, or Open Office).

Show Me More

14. I can save documents in Microsoft Office format (.doc,.docx), even if I use a different office suite (eg. Open Office, iWork).

Show Me More

15. Can you open PDFs? Open our PDF. What color is the Griffon?

(*Answer with a single word response) Show Me More

16. I know that for many of my online courses I will be required to have a Web cam to allow video proctoring of some course exams I will take using my computer, and I realize that this camera can be built into my computer or be an add-on item plugged into my computer.

Show Me More
   Your Score is : %

By checking this box I verify that I am , and agree to the statement below.

I own or have access to a computer on a daily basis and this computer has a current generation browser, a sound card, a current operating system, a video player, an office suite, a pdf reader, and sufficient bandwidth for online courses. If your answer is “no” to any of the above, STOP, secure the necessary items, and retake this test at a later date.






Thank you for taking the Distance Education Readiness Assessment. Your submission has been recorded.

Missouri Western Home Page

You are now cleared to register for online courses. No further action is required.