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Online Course FAQ

Why can't I fast-forward through the course?

All of the courses are locked on the first pass. You have to earn credit for the course before the "unlocked" version becomes available. If you would like to review a topic from the course after you have completed it, simply click on the course link on the Online Material page and the unlocked version will open up, allowing you to navigate freely amongst the different slides.

When I start a course, I get the spinning "loading" icon but it never starts the course... what can I do to get it to work?

This is likely because you do not have cookies enabled within your Flash installation. You may have cookies enabled on your browser, but Flash needs them enabled as well. In order to do this:

  1. Right-click on the spinning icon to get the Flash options
  2. Choose Settings (there are 5 separate categories under Settings, it may also say Storage Settings)
  3. The little panel should say something like, “How much information can www.minnesotasrc.com store on your computer?”
  4. Set the slider to "100K"; this should be sufficient to solve the problem.

More information here

The videos stutter, and it takes forever to get through a course. How can I stop this?

You are experiencing bandwidth slowdown on your end. The MNSRC website is hosted on a server that provides unlimited bandwidth, so any delay in media playback will occur due to clogging of the bandwith pipline on the user end.

Unfortunately, only two streaming solutions exist for this:

  1. Try watching the less video-intensive presentations at that time, and return to more video-intensive presentations at a different time.
  2. Pause slide playback for 30-60 seconds when a new slide loads, then restart the slide with the play button. During the delay, the video will download into your cache, and then play back with little to no stutter.

I have a high-speed Internet connection that gets 12 mbps download, how could I have a bandwidth problem?

What your Internet Service Provider sells you for your Internet connection are speeds "up to" X mbps. They do not guarantee you always get those speeds. Most in-home Internet connections go through a central node somewhere in your neighborhood, and the bandwidth on that node is shared by every Internet-user in the neighborhood.

If a large number of people are online at the same time downloading media-intensive material, everybody's download speed will slow... sometimes considerably. Certain times of the day and week will likely have much higher Internet usage, decreasing bandwidth for everybody on that network.

Why do I need a 100% in the quizzes for the Grade 8 courses?

For the introductory courses, we want students to show they comprehend the material they watched before they come to class. Each of these courses require a 75% on the test in order to pass. By requiring a 100% on the online portion, this drops the score needed to pass in class by giving the students a solid start on their score. The 100% score also offsets the fact that there is no instructor present to ensure the student is learning the material.

If you do not pass a quiz, you have the opportunity to retake it immediately, and can review the questions you missed so you understand why you missed them.

The course froze halfway through. Why? Do I have to start over?

The courses run on Adobe Flash, but Flash can, unfortunately, lock up some times. Nonetheless, your computer constantly bookmarks your slide. If the course freezes, hit your browser's back button, then click on the link to re-enter the course. As long as you do this on the same computer you were originally watching the course on, you will be asked if you want to pick up where you left off.

If this problem keeps repeating, it is still not an issue with the site. You can probably see on the Online Materials home page that hundreds of people have passed courses already this clinic season (and dozens probably that day). If your computer is locking up, it's a problem with your computer, not with the MNSRC website. If it was a problem with the website, very few people would be completing courses.

We recommend the following steps if you continue repeated lockups:

  1. Make sure you are using the most recent version of Flash Player on your browser.
  2. Reboot your computer, then go back into the presentation that was locking.
  3. If (2) does not work, clear the cache from your browser (but do not clear the cookies, as this will erase your bookmark).
  4. If (2) and (3) do not work, try watching the presentation on a different browser (though you will have to start from the beginning if you switch browsers).
  5. If (2), (3), and (4) do not work, try clearing the cache from your Adobe Flash Plug-In.
  6. If none of the above work, switch to a different computer. There is some setting or hiccup in the machine you are using that is causing the presentation to lock.

 

When I click on a link/Finish button at the end of the course nothing happens. How can I get credit for watching the course?

Thus far, the reasons for this issue appear to boil down to one of four reasons. All four are going to be an issue with the user's computer, not the website:

  1. The computer is not connected to the Internet when the user completes the course.
  2. The user is not logged into his/her MNSRC account when the course is completed (the session timed out... sessions run for one week, but it is possible)
  3. You are using a non-traditional browser. You should be using Internet Explorer, Firefox, Safari, or Chrome to view the course. We have heard reports of issues with ISP-native browsers (such as AOL's browser). It is impossible to test the functionality of the site on browsers that are not used universally.
  4. A pop-up blocker in the user's browser prevents the new tab from opening that loads the crediting script.
  5. A fifth possible solution was provided by Articulate, the software provider for the presentation, with regards to specific problems associated with Internet Explorer 9 and Internet Explorer 10. This solution is offered at the bottom of this question summary.
  6. With the release of Windows 8 and Internet Explorer 9, it seems that Microsoft has reset many of the standard worm protection protocols in its browser which can disable the crediting mechanism in these presentations. If you are trying to watch a course in IE9 and running into this problem, we STRONGLY urge you to use an alternate browser such as Firefox, Chrome, or Opera.

When a user completes a course, they either have to click on the "Finish" button in the quiz they just took or an in-presentation link on the presentation screen. This activates a hidden script that credits the user for having completed the course they just watched. This script is housed on the MNSRC website and checks the user's account information, so the user must be online and logged in when the script is activated, or else it will fail.

In-presentation links always open up a new tab or window in the user's browser, but pop-up blockers may prevent the site from opening this new tab or window. You can set an exception for the MNSRC website in your browser's pop-up blocker. For example, in Internet Explorer, select Tools, Pop-Up Blocker, Pop-Up Blocker Settings. Type in "www.minnesotasrc.com" into the web address window and then click "Add".

You can remove the exception after getting credit for the course if you do not want to allow further pop-ups from the MNSRC site. The MNSRC site uses very few pop-ups, but unfortunately the software for the presentations only allows a pop-up option for links based within the presentations.

Articulate Suggested Solution for Locking on Completion or a "Dead" Finish Button

  1. Enable Compatability Mode in Internet Explorer: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2536204
    If that fails...
  2. Make sure your Adobe Flash Player is up to date: http://www.adobe.com/go/getflash
  3. Make sure the correct version of Java is installed and enabled for your browser. Java can be downloaded and installed here: http://java.com 
  4. Clear your browser cache. You can do this in Internet Explorer by going to Tools > Internet Options > General > Temporary Internet Files. Select Delete Cookies and Delete Files.
  5. Also in Internet Options, on the Security, Privacy, and Advanced tabs, reset everything to its default settings. There is a button on each tab to reset defaults.
  6. In Windows Vista/Windows 7, go to Start > All Programs > Accessories > Run.  In Windows XP, go to Start > Run.
  7. Copy/paste the following line of text (depending on your operating system) into the Run dialog box. Click OK, and delete the entire contents of the window (folder) that opens:

    Windows Vista/Windows 7:
    "C:\Users\%username%\AppData\Roaming\Macromedia\Flash Player\#SharedObjects"

    Windows XP:
    "C:\Documents and Settings\%username%\Application Data\Macromedia\Flash Player\#SharedObjects"
     
  8. Close all browser windows for the changes to take effect, and then test your content again.

Nothing works... there has to be something wrong with the course files!

As you can see from the number of people who have watched presentatons on the Online Materials home page, there is nothing wrong with the course files. Hundreds of people are watching and receiving credit for the courses on a daily basis.

We do understand that some people have issues with the crediting process, but you are a very small segment. While we understand the frustration you are experiencing, receiving credit for the online work is the only way we can confirm for US Soccer that you have met your certification requirements for 2013. Again, we recommend utilizing the steps lilsted above to try to solve the problem.

I've finished my requirements but it still says my online requirements are incomplete. Is this a bug?

Probably not. If you are a recertifying referee, please make sure that, in addition to watching the minimum number of credit hours, you also watched the courses listed under "Required." These are typically very short topics involving things like IFAB's Changes to the Laws and MYSA Rule Modifications. Until you meet the minimum number of hours AND watch any required presentations, you will not be allowed to sign up for a class.

You also must watch new material to qualify. Simply repeating the same courses that you watched last year will not enhance your knowledge. For 2013, a recertifying official must watch 1.25 hours of brand new material that they did not watch last year. This is easy to do, because over 5 hours of new material were added to the site.

If it looks like you have finished all required topics and met the minimum credits but still don't seem to be getting credit, please contact the webmaster.

I'm watching on an iOS device but when I finish a course it will not give me credit.

The courses on iOS devices run through the free downloadable Articulate app. This app only syncs with Safari. When you finish a course and are advised to click on the Finish button to get credit, the app will send you back to Safari. If you entered the course through another browser (Chrome, Firefox, etc.) and are logged in on that different browser, the site will assume you are not logged in (via Safari) and will not give you credit.

The fix is very simple... when using the site on your iOS device, please do so through Safari to ensure that when you finish each course you will be properly credited.


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