Connecting Concepts: TUTORIAL BASICS

 
 

WARNING! Do you see fish swimming in the image directly below? If not, you need to download Macromedia Flash Player 6. These tutorials will not work without Flash Player 6 (older Flash players will not work!). Download Flash Player 6 >>

 
         
   
   
 
 
Computer Settings
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Screen Resolution

Your screen resolution should be set at 1024 x 768. If your screen is set at 800 x 600 resolution, you will have to do a lot of scrolling.

   
 

Changing resolution on a PC: In the Start menu, click on Settings. Click on Control Panel. In the Control Panel, find Display. When you open Display Properties, click on the tab marked Settings. Adjust the Screen Area to 1024x768.

 

 

  Changing resolution on a PC: In the Start menu, click on Settings. Click on Control Panel. In the Control Panel, find Display. When you open Display Properties, click on the tab marked Settings. Adjust the Screen Area to 1024x768.
   

System Requirements

In order to use Flash Player, your hardware, operating system, and browser combination must meet system requirements. To view supported configurations, look at the "Playback" section in Macromedia's Flash Player MX System Requirements.

 
How Tutorials Work
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Organization: Units > Lessons > Topics

These tutorials are organized into major Units (e.g. Plant Biology).
Units are composed of Lessons (e.g. Water Relations).
Lessons are further divided into multiple Topics (e.g. What is water potential?).

After you have set your computer up correctly (see above) and exit this page, you will move forward to the Lesson Home Page.

 
Lesson Home Pages

Below, you'll find an example of the Lesson home page. This is a brief overview at how the Lesson pages are organized.

At the top of the page is the Unit title. Directly underneath the Unit title is the Lesson title. Each Lesson page will have a brief introduction. About midway down the Lesson page, you will find the buttons that take you to the various Topics. Lessons are made up of 1-5 Topics. We recommend that you always proceed through the Topics in order (left to right).

 

Topic Home Pages

Below, you'll find an example of the topic home page. This is the "entry gate" into the topic. It has a brief introduction and a summary of what your task will be while you go through the topic.

 
Activities

The activities use Macromedia Flash Player 6. Within the Flash activity, there will be activity-specific navigation prompts (e.g. arrows, submit buttons). See below.

 
Frequently Asked Questions
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Why am I scrolling from left to right so much?

These tutorials are designed so that the flash animation fits on the screen with no left and right scrolling. If you are scrolling from left to right, you probably need to adjust the resolution of your screen to 1024x768. See how to adjust your computer's resolution in computer settings.

 

Why am I scrolling up and down so much?

There is a lot of information to present in these activities. While we worked very hard to minimize scrolling, some activities will require up-and-down scrolling, especially on smaller monitors. So, some up-and-down scrolling is unavoidable. However, one reason that you may be scrolling up and down is because you need to adjust the resolution of your computer screen. See how to adjust your computer's resolution in computer settings.

 

Why aren't the activities working (ie. buttons don't work, drag-and-drops don't work)?

If the activities in Flash aren't working properly, you might need to download Macromedia Flash Player 6. If you are using an older version of Flash Player, some of the acitivites will not work, because they were designed using Macromedia Flash MX. Download the player and try again (you might also need try restarting your computer).

 

Why are the words so small and hard to read?

Though some font sizes are small so that they can fit into the activity space, they should be legible in the proper viewing environment. Make sure that your resolution is set at 1024x768 and not higher than that.

 

Why can't I "step back" through the Flash-animated activity?

There are some limits to our programming, and this is one of them. Where possible, we designed these tutorials with back arrows so that you can return to some ideas and review them again. This was not possible in all sections.

 

Which navigation do I use?

See How Tutorials Work. In sum, if you are navigating between different activities within a Topic, use the dark red/maroon arrow buttons in the HTML page. If you are within a Flash animation activity, use the buttons available there (these look more 3D and are located more in the middle of your screen).

 

Is there sound?

At present there is no sound that goes with these tutorials, but it's something we're working on. If you like, we suggest plugging in your headphones, sticking a CD in your computer's CD Player and jamming away with these tutorials!

 

Are there links to additional examples or practice questions?

There aren't any links to additional examples as of yet. This is something that we are diligently working on behind the scenes and will be adding to these tutorials shortly. As far as practice questions go: the problem sets are designed to reflect the types of questions you will encounter on exams. Those will be a good source of practice. Otherwise, ask your TAs and Professors. They might be hiding some practice questions up their sleeves!

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