Welcome to PDS166

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Welcome to PDS166, otherwise known as Introduction to Computer Basics. In this 1 unit course you will learn (or review) the basic functions of a computer.  Because everyone is in a different place in their learning and because everyone has more to learn about computers, after we have the basics covered you will define your own final assignment, based on what YOU want to get out of this class. It's a lab class, so most of your work will be teaching yourself (with instructor support) a new computer skill. It could be anything from learning how to use word processing software to learning to code, to building a website. We will discuss the best project for you, one that may be a bit challenging, but still do-able in the limited time we have.

Your Computer Basics Professor:

Rebecca (Becky) Reid,

Feel free to contact me if you have any questions about the course that aren't answered here, or if you need help getting started.

Course Details

Availability for Summer 2020:

PDS166, Introduction to Computer Basics, Course Record Number (CRN): 51017 will become available at 12:00 a.m. on the first day of class, June 15, 2020. Our last day of class is July 9, 2020.

Class assignments may be due any weekday, Monday through Thursday (except for holidays). The class will be available on weekends, but no assignments will be due on weekends or holidays. You do not have to log in to the course on any particular day or time, but you should expect to log in several times per week (every day is the best idea) to participate in class discussions and keep up with due dates.

Course Description (from the course catalog):

PDS166 covers operating system basics. Lessons include working with folders and files, customizing the operating system environment, and using a browser to explore and search the World Wide Web.

Student Learning Outcomes:

Upon completion of this course, you will be able to:

1. Demonstrate the use of the operating system.
2. Create folder and file objects.
3. Apply personal settings within the operating system.
4. Explore various features of the World Wide Web.
5. Demonstrate basic file search techniques.


No textbook is required for this class. All required course content will be delivered online.

Time Commitment

PDS166 a one-unit class. Because the class is compressed into 4 weeks, you can expect to spend anywhere from 3 to 8 hours per week on this course. You will use a combination of readings, online lessons, and internet research to complete your assignments and final project.

Enrolling in the course

To add this course before the start date, login to myCuesta Links to an external site.and go to the Student tab and My Web Services channel. Detailed instructions about adding a course can be found here.Links to an external site.

You will need the following 5-digit course reference number (CRN) for this course

If the class has already started you will need an add code. Contact me to ask for an add code. 

I'm happy to add new students after the course begins, up until the end of the first week of the course. (By the way: Add codes have letters that are case-sensitive and must be entered in ALL CAPS.)

If the class is full, you can still contact me and ask to be put on a wait list. I'll contact you with an add code if anyone drops the course in the first few days. For more information, please refer to Cuesta's waitlist policyLinks to an external site.

Accessing PDS166 through Cuesta's Course Management System (Canvas)

After you have enrolled in the course...

  1. Go to https://cuesta.instructure.com/
  2. Sign in with your mycuesta username and password

  3.  Click on PDS166

For more details on logging in and navigating Canvas, Cuesta's Learning Management System (LMS), Download a printable quick reference guide on using CanvasLinks to an external site.

Dropping PDS166

Read Cuesta's policy on dropping a courseLinks to an external site. to recieve full or partial refunds, along with instructions on how to drop a course. Remember that is your responsibility to drop a course. Do not count on me (or any instructor) to drop you.

On Cuesta's Course Drop Information PageLinks to an external site., look for a "Student Calendar" link where you can download a PDF with all the applicable drop deadlines.


Requirements and Support

Required Technical Skills

To succeed in any of my online courses, you will need basic computer skills, such as creating and uploading documents, sending and receiving email, and navigating the internet. It's helpful to know how to capture a "screen shot" save a document as a PDF, and be comfortable with organizing and storing electronic files.

Academic Honesty

This course adheres to all of Cuesta College's General Campus Policies (including: Withdrawal, Repeatability, Student Code of Conduct). Follow the links below for specifics:

Computer Requirements

To access this online course, you will need—

  • access to a computer with a modern, up to date browser;
  • access to the internet and;
  • a place to store electronic files, such as your computer's hard drive or a cloud storage location of your choice.

Google Drive is free and integrates with Canvas, so it may be a good choice, but there are other storage options out there such as Dropbox, OneDrive, iCloud, etc.

Learn more about Cuesta's recommended computer specifications.Links to an external site.

Technical Support

If your internet goes down or the power is out, you are still responsible for accessing the course.  When this happens, you can access the class directly through Canvas.

If you need technical help, try this webpage first Links to an external site.

You could also email a question to: support@my.cuesta.edu

For all other issues related to the course or course content, please email me at rebecca_reid@cuesta.edu

College Support Services

If you are a Veteran, or if you have a physical, mental, or learning disability that might require an  accommodation, please contact Disabled Student Programs and ServicesLinks to an external site. as soon as possible to ensure that you receive the accommodations in a timely manner. I will be happy to discuss and work with you on your need for accommodations.

Preparing for Online Learning

If you are new to online learning (or even if you are not so new, but it all still seems a bit confusing), have a look at the Cuesta College Online Readiness OrientationLinks to an external site..

Getting Support with Canvas

Canvas (the platform Cuesta uses to bring all of your online courses to you) can seem complicated sometimes, but there is help available. Check out the Canvas Student GuideLinks to an external site. to search for anything you want to know.

Did you read all of that?

You did?

You are amazing!

You should really go lie down for a while though, that was a LOT of stuff.

Hope to see you in class!

Professor Reid,
a.k.a. Becky

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