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All courses provided by the Free Technology Academy are conducted entirely online at the FTA Virtual Campus. The FTA learning methodology allows learners to define their own study schedule: asynchronous communication tools, few deadlines and activities that can be joined at different dates and times. This model allows for anyone to join FTA courses, regardless of their location and job, as long as they have regular access to the Internet.
Studying at the FTA is quite different from studying at a conventional university. The teacher is more a guide or a coach than a traditional lecturer, which means more freedom for students but also more responsibility in planning their study. The learning methodology is based on three main pillars: course materials, class debates and Continuous Assessment Activities (CAA).
Course materials are the main source of information for FTA learners. They cover all the learning objectives of the course, and constitute the reference resource that will be used when evaluating learners. Course materials are also a very valuable resource for self-learning.
During the course, tutors will use the class forum to engage learners in discussions and debates on specific issues related to the course's content. Also, several activities will be proposed to help learners extend their understanding of these topics. Within these activities, relevant experts will be invited to participate in the course as guest lecturers, giving a video talk and discussing it with the class afterwards.
Continuous Assessment Activities, besides being the main evaluation tool for most FTA courses, represent an important didactic resource by themselves. These activities will help learners consolidate and summarize the key aspects of the course, and at the same time will provide tutors with an opportunity to give learners personalised feedback.
It usually takes 13 weeks to complete a module in the FTA, after which the learner is entitled to be granted a number of ECTS credits at any of the partner universities. The FTA issues certificates per module, recognised by university partners. Most modules are 5 ECTS credits long, which corresponds to a workload of 125-150 hours for the learners.
The evaluation of FTA learners is done continuously during the whole course. There are a number of assignments that will be published during the course for which learners will receive marks: the Continuous Assessment Activities (CAA). Depending on the course these activities may consist of answering a set of questions, writing a short essay or completing and documenting a practical task.
Also, the participation of each learner in class activities such as debates and guest lectures is evaluated by tutors along with the CAA.
Typically, FTA courses have 3 or 4 Continuous Assessment Activities that account for 80% of the final grade. The other 20% corresponds to participation in class activities.
The Study Guide
The figures you can read here are only provided as examples, they may change from one course to another. Every FTA course has a Study Guide that contains all the important information about the course: syllabus, evaluation model, publication and delivery dates of Continuous Assessment Activities, guest lectures, etc. Registered learners will receive the Study Guide when the course begins or a few days before.