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Important Information For Students - Cisco Courses

Please read this document Carefully! It contains information all students who have enrolled in the Cisco IT Essentials or Cisco Networking courses need to be successful at CAVI.

the following document attempts to summarize the locations of resources and the tasks which students must complete in order to pass their chosen courses.

This document is subject to change without notice and will contain inaccuracies which we will attempt to fix as soon as possible. If you notice an error please email cavi-instructors at

On course completion a certificate will be given to the student containing a list of tasks and skills the student should have attained as part of the course. No grades are included on the certificate. You either get a certificate if you pass, or you don't and you fail. You can retake a course if you fail, (at aditional charge if not in a country where fees have been waved.).

Each course runs for 1 semester.

As you proceed through your courses you will be graded on several components. You must pass every component. It is not sufficient to do really well in the chapter tests, and not submit any labs. Students who do not adequately complete all sections below will not pass, regardless of their marks in any one section. You will be given progress reports and warnings of potentially unsatisfactory work as you proceed and given the means to correct and resubmit it.

 The Basic mark breakdown for courses is as follows: 
  • Labs and worksheets are worth 30% of your mark.
  • Module exams are worth 30% of your mark collectively.
  • Final exam or exams are worth 30%.
  • 10% goes towards a practical task or our observations of you during your practical work.

Note The terms chapter and module are considered the same and are used interchangeably.


You will need the following resources to complete your studies, and optional resources are listed. Where differences exist between courses they will be noted.

  • Cisco Netspace login
  • Cucat Wiki class page which includes the accessible labs and worksheets.
  • Audio lectures, recordings of past lectures given.
  • Instructional material for navigating courses and the site.
  • Live lectures hosted on our Ventrilo server.
  • CaviCasts.
  • mailing lists.

Netspace login:

All students enroll in ITE or CCNA must have a Cisco Netspace student login. It will allow them to log into The Cisco Academy

 This login is used to read curriculum for your course if desired, and is used to take and keep track of all your online chapter and final tests in the gradebook. It also keeps track of which courses you have completed, and gives you access to the Alumni area which is a free resource allowing graduates to retain access to the online curriculum after completion. Students who do not have a functional and accurate academy login cannot receive certificates for completing these courses.

cucat wiki:

 contains accessible resources for your course, including modified curriculum notes where required, labs and worksheets collected together and instructional material. 

This should be your first stop for accessible resources.

Ccurriculum Links

The curriculum on the Netspace site will be available to students who are studying courses that require it. You will be required to set up a NetSpace account. The means to do this will be given you by your instructor.

You will require Adobe flash version 10 or later installed, and a modern browser and screen reader (if required) that can interpret this flash content. Javascript and cookies must be enabled, as well as popup windows in order to access both the netacad and cucat sites.

Where flash based curriculum is deemed inaccessible, text dumps of the course will be provided. No other text dumps of curriculum will be provided.

There are exam diagram descriptions for each end of chapter exam that contains diagrams. For more information about these see taking module exams below. Labs and worksheets for each chapter are also provided in this area which students must complete. see labs and worksheets below for more information. audio lectures are provided in mp3 format. these are an excellent revision source and contain a wealth of useful information. recordings of past year's lectures are also provided, often these can be useful when revising for exams if you are sick of listening to the current year's lecture. The number of lectures per module or chapter will depend on the amount of student questions and the time taken to cover the material.

Labs and worksheets:

Students must complete the labs and worksheets for each module of their chosen course, and email your answers to the instructor email address for that course for marking. You must complete all labs and worksheets unless advised otherwise by an instructor. Labs and worksheets can be downloaded from the cucat wiki, and filled in by the student. The Marks for these will be entered in the gradebook close to end of course to give students maximum opportunity to resubmit corrected work.

taking online exams:

There are various exams for chapters, and a final exam or exams at the end of a course. The courses have one exam per chapter for most chapters, and final exams. They also have a course feedback option that will tell you what sections you need to study in more depth when you grade your exams.

You should take a module exam once you complete a module. Students are allowed multiple attempts at a module exam. A mark >75% in a module exam is a pass for that module.

To take an exam, login to cisco Netspace select the class you are interested in from the table of classes you are enrolled in. Select the take assessment link.

Exams are not allways available for students to take, and must be activated by an instructor. Module exams can be active for a week at a time, before they need to be reactivated. Please check if your exams are active before asking an instructor to activate them for you. To have exams activated, email with the course to be activated. Please specify your class. Right now is not a reasonable or achievable activation time generally speaking.

We usually batch activate all module exams for a course in a particular class for a week.

A student has 2 hours to complete a module exam. If your vision precludes you from seeing pictures easily, you should open the exam diagram descriptions from the cucat website in a separate windo or tab before starting the exam.

Online research is not forbidden in a chapter exam but is highly discouraged. If a student runs out of time because they were busy researching material in an exam we will not have any sympathy for you. You should have learned your material from the curriculum, lecture or online research before sitting the chapter exam. Students get 3 attempts at a module exam, and your final attempt mark is placed in the gradebook. You must score over 75% to pass a module exam.

final exams:

There are final exams for the courses. A final exam usually takes 3 hours to complete and contains over 50 questions. Final exams can only be active for an 8 hour time window. Students should specify a future time at which they wish to take an exam, and it will be activated for them.

Diagram descriptions will be emailed to students before taking final exams and an instructor will be with you on Skype or Ventrilo.

checking your answers:

After a student has taken an exam, they may obtain access to audio answers if they exist. This is in adition to the exam feedback provided by Cisco. To obtain your exam feedback, select the link once you have graded your exam. You must grade an exam for the marks to appear in the gradebook. If you close out of an exam it will not show as complete on the system and you will be locked out of taking that particular exam until an instructor unlocks it for you. Remember that clicking the link for an exam on the take an assessment page starts an attempt of that exam. Try to avoid this situation if at all possible, as these situations can be incredibly difficult to sort out. If you fail an exam once, please let your instructor know before attempting it again so that they can assist you.

General Information

Time Zones

Anyone wishing to do their own timezone conversions should check out this excellent timezone calculator. If you own a device with world clock functionality you may wish to add Perth Western Australia to your list of cities to aid in conversion. The academy runs on Perth Time in Western Australia. Note that when daylight savings comes into affect you will have to ajust your start times accordingly for your location.


Orientation takes place in the week preceding the start of term. [Students will be notified as to time and date.] This Initial lecture will be for setup purposes and to answer questions. It is highly recommended as many students attend orientation as possible in order to iron out any problems with their ventrilo setup etc.

If you can't attend for some reason, you can download Orientation files here.

Basic Lecture Schedule

here is the schedule of lectures this term. It is important that where possible you attend the lectures; this will give you the ability to ask questions in real time and will keep you motivated.

If you can not attend the lecture; audio will be downloadable from the Cucat website sometime after the lecture is finished. Most courses also have podcast feeds which will be updated as the lecture audio is produced.

Mailing Lists

As many of you will have noticed all students have been subscribed to both the cavi-announce and cavi-discuss mailing lists. Subscription to the announce list is a requirement for studying with us, and the discuss list is very strongly encouraged. There is also a class specific mailing list for each course. The mailing lists are a key tool in our course delivery so it is extremely important that all students pay close attention to what is posted to the announce list. If you have missed information, the list archives are referenced in the headers and at the bottom of each posted message, and on the list information page. General discussion should occur on cavi-discuss at and only important announcements are permitted on the moderated cavi-announce at mailing list. Students are not usually permitted to post to the announce list, except in special circumstances.

For Local students:

Local students should be at the Association for the Blind by 9am on the day of the course they are studying. The day runs until 3pm, however if students have completed all their work, they can leave early after checking with an instructor. There is a cafe at the association, or students can pack and bring their own lunch. (No fridge or kettle is provided for clients). Water is available at the cafe at no charge. Take away food is not to be brought into and consumed in the cafe area, however is permitted in the client lounge.

All local students are expected to have their own headset and microphone, or at minimum a method of accessing a computer that does not rely on audio that would disrupt others. Headsets without microphones are available for students to borrow on a temporary basis.

All local students should check their email regularly for important announcements and information related to the course.

For Remote students:

Remote students will need a few more tools and tricks than local students, however most of these are free.


If you wish to listen live to lectures, you will need to download and install Ventrilo from this link..

There is a tutorial on this wiki that will give more information on how to set Ventrillo up. The following is a summary:

  • Note that Ventrilo does not use menus, it uses buttons activated with the spacebar. This is easy enough once you get used to it.
  • Ventrilo is accessible with JAWS and NVDA or similar once the default hotkey is changed if desired. (It defaults to left control which can cause your microphone to open when you silence speech).
  • username should be your first name dot last name in lowercase. For example grace.king.
  • Server hostname is port 28961
  • your password is the one provided to you upon account creation.
  • The Ventrilo server is available at all times (assuming it hasn't crashed) for the use of students both for work and socializing.
    We have a 50 user license.
  • Usually when people join they arrive in the lobby, you can then move to lecture specific channel when lecture begins.
  • All lectures are recorded, encoded to vbr mp3 and posted on the sight soon after lecture is complete.
  • It is important that you check your audio levels before trying to talk in class, historically skype would mess with the microphone levels. Also note that if Microphone or suitable recording source has not been chosen, Ventrilo will not choose it for you. There is a test with test button inside the setup dialog which you can use to test your level. Note you will have to shift tab back around to it or you will become stuck in the hotkey field when tabbing.

Getting IN Touch With Instructors

Most of the CAVI staff are volunteers, and they live in varying time zones. The paid staff are only paid to work on this project 3 days a week. These days (Perth time) are Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday 9AM till 4pm. Instructors can arrange to be available at other times on request: however, please understand that you are contacting instructors on their personal time. Please keep this in mind when asking for support.


Skype is used for person to person communication when a student wants to talk confidentially to an instructor, or 1 to 1 communication is desired. It is required for all students to obtain and know how to use skype, and provide their skype ids to the instructors. You can get skype here and here are jaws scripts. Please email cavi-instructors at with your skype ID so that the instructors can add you to skype.


Email is far less disruptive out of hours than skype chat, msn etc. Your question might only take 10 seconds to ask, but much longer to answer. If your question is relevant to more than one student it benefits all if you ask it on the discussion list at cavi-discuss @ [Without the spaces.] or on your class discussion list.

If you do need to ask a question of one of your class instructors, you can post it to the class email address. This is also the address to which you should send completed assignments. The class email addresses are below. Please take out the spaces. They are here to prevent spam.]

  • ITE: submit-ite @
  • CCNA: submit-ccna @ ciscovision . org
  • General inquiries can be sent to cavi-instructors @ ciscovision org.


Payments for your courses are accepted via paypal. Please visit and click on the donate link to pay for your courses. Click on the link to add special instructions and note the courses you are paying for. The due date for your first payment is the first week of the month following the start of your course. So if your course starts the first week of September, you need to make your first payment the first week of October. Please email cavi-instructors at with any questions regarding payment, or if you require a payment installment plan before this date. If you have already paid this step is not necessary. Those who do not pay by the deadline risk there accounts on the Cisco server being deleted, and losing Ventrillo access.

Good luck!

From the whole CAVI team, we look forward to working with you in the upcoming semester and beyond. Regards, Your CAVI Instructors

Updates may be made to this document as required.

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Page last modified on January 13, 2015, at 09:58 PM