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1. I just enrolled but I see that the project began on January 15th. Am I too late?
A. New participants are welcome at any time!

2. When is work due? Are there deadlines?
A. The project schedule is flexible for participants. Simply work at your own pace to complete the assessments by the closing date. 

3. How do I earn a HarvardX/edX certificate?
A. All participants who achieve a cumulative total of 75% or greater on their Course Portfolio will earn a certificate. [For more information about scores see #6.1-6 below.]

4. I didn't participate in the first module of Poetry in America: The Poetry of Early New England. Will I be at a disadvantage?
A. No! Each Poetry in America module is designed to stand alone (as well as alongside) the other modules. We welcome new participants as we launch new modules throughout 2014 and 2015.

5. Where will important news and updates be posted?
A. Be sure to check Course Info frequently. Important news, updates, and corrections will be posted here throughout the project.

6. When does this project end?
A. The closing date is March 14, 2014. After this date, we will no longer accept new participants, new discussion posts, or assessment/exercise responses. However, course materials will remain available and open for participants.

7. When and how will I receive my certificate?
A. Certificates will be released on March 17. Students can find their certificates on their edX student dashboard at that date.


1. Where can I find the schedule of readings for each Week?
A. You can find the schedule of readings in the Syllabus tab, or in the Courseware under Part 0.

2. I can't view the readings in the Poems Tab. Where can I download and print them?
A. The readings are available as PDFs to download and print, if you would like, under "Course Handouts" on the Course Info page, and as links from the Syllabus

3. I already finished this week's reading and I would like some additional readings and resources. Where can I find them?
A. Check out the Resources tab HERE for suggestions for further reading. This page provides additional resources for the study of poetry and of Walt Whitman. 


1. How do I watch the videos?
A. You can access all the videos for each week in the Courseware section. 

2. For technical reasons, I can't watch the videos in Courseware. Can I download them?
A. If you look directly below the video frame, you will see a link for downloading the file.

3. For technical reasons, I can't even download the videos. Can I download audio files?
A. Look directly below the video frame to find the link for downloading the audio file.

4. Are all the video/audio download links available in one place?
A. Not at the moment, but we hope to provide that in the near future.


1. I submitted the strongest answer, but the system didn't give me proper credit. Instead of a green check I received a red X. It is located right next to my answer. What should I do?
A. Take a screen shot that includes your answer and the response you received (red X). A screen shot (alternatively called a screen capture, screen grab, or print screen) is a snapshot taken by your computer of what is visible on your computer screen at a certain moment. [For information about taking a screen shot, see #5.8 below.] Include the screen shot in a post for the Poetry Team on the FAQ Thread in the Discussion Board. A member of the Poetry Team will respond as quickly as possible.

2. I submitted the strongest answer, but I received a red X. It is located below and to the left of all the answers. What should I do?
A. It is likely that you clicked “Final Check” without selecting an answer. Please be sure to select an answer before clicking “Final Check”. If you are certain you selected an answer first, take a screen shot immediately. [For information about taking a screen shot, see #5.8 below.] Include the screen shot in a post for the Poetry Team on the FAQ Thread in the Discussion Board. A Poetry Team member will respond as quickly as possible.

3. I disagree with the explanation provided about the answers to a particular question. Or I'd like to discuss the answer openly for another reason. How can I discuss this without giving away the answer?
A. There are special threads in the Discussion Board where you can openly discuss the poems and themes for each week. Look for posts that contain the title “Official Thread."


1. How can I follow a thread in the Discussion Board?
A. Click on the grey star icon in the top right hand corner of the post.

2. I only want to view the threads I'm following. Is that possible?
A. In the Discussion Board, click on “Show all Discussions” at the top of the list of threads. From the drop-down menu select “Posts I'm Following”. When you are ready to see all posts again, click on “Posts I'm Following”. From the drop-down menu select “Show All Discussions”.

3. How can I follow a particular person in the Discussion Board?
A. The edX platform does not currently offer this function. But there is a way for you to see threads with contributions by a specific participant. Just click on that person's username near the top of a post or reply. That link opens a page where you can view recent activity by the participant. You can use your browser to bookmark this page.

4. I posted a question in the Discussion Board. How will I know if someone responds?
A. When you start a new thread, it will automatically be marked as a discussion to follow. You can get updates about all the threads you follow by going to the Discussion Board Home and clicking on the check box for “receive update”. You only need to do this once. After that, you will receive a daily email digest about activity from posts you are following.

5. I found a post that I think is inappropriate. What should I do?
A. You can “flag” the post. A Poetry Team member will review these flagged posts.

6. I'm experiencing technical problems that appear to be related to the platform (new posts won't appear in the Discussion Board, I'm getting 404 errors, etc.). What should I do?
A. Please use the Help tab on the left hand side of the screen to report this problem directly to the edX team.

7. I'm experiencing a problem related to content in the project (I found an error in the transcript, I'm having a problem with a self-assessment, video, text, etc.) What should I do?
A. Please check the FAQ Thread in the Discussion Board to see if this problem has been reported. If not, please take a screen shot and notify the Poetry Team by posting in the FAQ Thread in the Discussion Board  [For information about taking a screen shot, see #5.8 below.]

8. I've been asked to provide a screen shot. How do I take a screen shot?
A. For a Mac: press command + shift + 3 This will take a snap shot of your entire screen and place a copy on your desk top. For a PC: Use your “Print Screen” [PrtScn] Key. This will save a screen shot to a designated location on your computer. Many helpful tutorials are available online.


1. What work is scored?
A. There are five types of assessments in this module: open-response exercises, annotations, reading completion, video completion, and discussion participation. Students may, of course, participate in all of these activities without submitting them for portfolio credit, but those who are working towards a certificate can simply click on "submit for credit" at the end of an exercise or part, and the assignment will be recorded in their portfolios.

2. Is participation in the Discussion Board required?
A. Participation in the Discussion Board is required for those seeking an edX certificate, but many participants find it is a valuable addition to their experience. For those seeking a certificate, we ask that you participate in a discussion twice per part, not including the Open Response Exercises.

3. Who is required to answer the Discussion Question after the study of a poem?
A. Participants are not required to post a response to each Discussion Question included in the Courseware. Students seeking a certificate are expected to participate in a discussion twice per part, not incuding the Open Response Exercises. Still, we encourage you all to participate!

4. How much is each assessment worth? How are the assessments weighed?
A. Each assessment type is worth 20% of your portfolio. Since there are only three Open Response Exercises, those are each weighed more than the Annotation Exercises, for instance, of which there are more.

5. What score do I need to earn a certificate?
A. Participants who achieve a total score of 75% or greater will earn a certificate. The lowest five Annotation scores will be dropped when calculating this total.

6. What are those five "x" marks on my Progress Page?
A. Those will mark your lowest scores. At the start of the project they will be shown on the assessments. Once all assessments are completed, they will move to the five lowest annotation scores which will be dropped.

7. Can anyone besides for me see my Progress Page?
A. Only staff members will have access to your Progress Page.