Distance Learning

There are two types of Distance Learning courses at Sul Ross:

  1. Courses listed as "Web-delivered" in the class schedule are delivered entirely on the Internet using Blackboard, an online course management system. 
  2. Courses listed as "Distance Education" in the class schedule make use of the videoconferencing equipment and may or may not use Blackboard to manage communication and the delivery of course content. Distance Education courses do have regularly scheduled times when students meet, though not all students will gather at the same place

Distance Learning Documents & Links:

Distance Learning Handbook

DE Classrooms (Videoconferencing)


Blackboard & Tech Information:

What is Blackboard?

Blackboard is a web-based learning environment that enables instructors to enhance on-campus learning and/or deliver distance learning by bringing their course materials, class discussions, assignments and assessments (tests/quizzes) to the web. Your instructor will let you know if your class uses Blackboard or not.

Logging In To Blackboard

For Blackboard access and login you will need your user credentials (login and password). If you do not have your login credentials, you can aquire them by using the LoboPass system.

SRSU Blackboard Support Contact Information

If you are experiencing trouble with any area of Blackboard, you can contact the LTAC Help Desk for help. 


Internet Connections

Access to the Internet is especially important for students taking distance learning courses, where courses may make extensive use of Blackboard, online discussion groups, e-mail, and other methods of file sharing, communication, and interaction.  Students taking web-delivered or distance education courses are responsible for securing an Internet Service Provider.  For most students, this will mean locating and paying for the services of an ISP that serves the area in which they live.  Others will want to explore the options made available by wireless technology, but they will need to pay for and configure their own software.  


Technology Checklist

There are basic computing and Internet access specifications that you will need in order to successfully participate in distance learning courses at Sul Ross State University.

Resident students and students living in the area are provided with campus-based Internet access and several computer labs (ACR 106 and Library Second Floor). Students residing outside the area are expected to have access to a computer and secure their own Internet service provider.


If your course is using Blackboard you will need:

  • You need a computer with multimedia capabilities (i.e., sound ), a monitor capable of at least 1024 x 786 resolution, a modem or Internet connection, and an Internet browser in order to access Blackboard.
  • Access to the Internet via an Internet Service Provider.  We recommend the use of a cable modem or DSL if possible.
  • A web browser.
  • Software programs or other plug-ins required by your instructor. Check with your instructor to see what software programs and plug-ins are necessary for the class.
     Adobe Acrobat Reader
     Flash Player
     PowerPoint Viewer or compatable alternative

Other Information

  • All computer-related questions should be referred to your computer's manufacturer.
  • All Internet connection questions should be referred to your Internet Service Provider.
  • Other browsers, such as AOL or Opera, may function but are not officially supported by Blackboard. You may use AOL as your ISP, but you will then need to open one of the required browsers (Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox or Safari). To do so, dial into the Internet with your AOL account. Then minimize the AOL browser window and open required browser.

If you are using Microsoft Works, this software may pose a compatibility problem if your professor and classmates are using Microsoft Word to create, edit, and view documents. If you are using MS Works, save the document as either a MS Word Document 97-2003 or as an .rtf or .txt (If you do save as .txt you will lose the document's formatting, but it can still be viewed.)

If you are using Microsoft Word 2007 or later, you currently have compatibility with all Blackboard functions (such as Safe Assignment). Even with this said, a good rule of thumb is to save your document out as an MS Word 97-2003 document which is also compatible with all Blackboard functions and, more importantly, viewable by those instructors who may not have the latest version of MS Word yet.