As a student at TAFE SA, you will need to use computers throughout your studies.  You have access to a range of tools and services that can help you in your coursework, and lots of support is available to help you use this technology.

Basic requirements

You will need access to a computer during your studies.  You can access the TAFE SA online environment by either:

  • using your personal computer or device
  • using computer facilities at your closest TAFE SA Campus
  • accessing community resources such as your public library or community centre.

A basic level of computer skills is helpful, but don't worry if you need support.  You can get help at all stages of your study. 

 

  • To access online learning and support services at TAFE SA you will need one or more of the following devices:

    • A laptop, PC, tablet or mobile phone with an internet connection or capacity
    • Internet access using either a home, work or public network

    You can use your own portable devices, including laptops, tablets and mobile phones, while on campus by connecting to the TAFE SA Wi-Fi and accessing key systems through the TAFE SA Portal

    For students who don’t have access to a computer or the internet at home, desktop computers are available for use at the Student Hubs and Libraries at most TAFE SA campuses.  Laptops are available for loan for on-campus use at Adelaide, Regency, Tonsley and Mount Gambier using the Lapsafes.

  • The specific skills and knowledge of computers you will need may depend on the qualification you are studying, and the amount of online and independent content required of you.

    When commencing a vocational course at TAFE SA, you will need to be familiar with some basic functions of computers, such as:

    • Microsoft Word, including use of headings, paragraphs, dot points, changing font
    • Microsoft Outlook, including sending/receiving emails, opening and attaching files/documents
    • General Internet navigation, including use of tabs, downloading resources, searching websites
    • File storage, including USB and local hard drive use

    If you do not yet have the computer skills required for the course you are studying, support is available:

    • Let's Get Digital - a one-day course designed for students who are enrolling or are enrolled in TAFE SA vocational courses, to help you improve your skills in computers and online study. It covers the basics of email, the TAFE SA Portal, the Learn online course platform, managing files in OneDrive, and Collaborate.
      The course runs in the Orientation period each semester, watch the Current Students website for updates on when Let's Get Digital will be run next.
    • Foundation Skills courses - the Certificate I in Access to Vocational PathwaysCertificate I in Skills for Vocational Pathways and Certificate II in Skills for Work and Vocational Pathways courses contain various units covering the basics of computer use
    • Information Technology short courses - our IT program offers a number of short courses on using such tools as Word, Excel, Outlook and PowerPoint
    • Community Education - many local Community Centres and Neighbourhood Centres run courses and workshops, which are usually free or low-cost.  You can get support to boost the skills you need for study, work and life, including using a computer and office computing skills. You can find out more about your local Community Education provider on the Skilled Careers Website.  
  • It’s really important that you setup your TAFE SA account prior to commencing your course. To set up your account follow these 3 simple steps:

    1. Visit the TAFE SA Portal and click Perform a Password Reset to set your password.
    2. Enter your TAFE SA student email address as shown in your Welcome email.
    3. An unlock code will be sent to the personal email address you provided when you enrolled with TAFE SA. Enter the code in the Reset Your Password section.
    4. Enter your new password. This completes the process.

    Your password must meet the following requirements:

    • 8 to 16 characters
    • Contain characters from at least three of the following four categories:
    • Lowercase characters (a–z)
    • Uppercase characters (A–Z)
    • Numerals (0-9)
    • Symbols (! @ # $ % ^ & * - _ + = [ ] { } | \ : ‘ , . ? / ` ~ “ < > ( ) ;)

What if I need help?

If you experience problems, or just need help getting started, you can get help from:

  • Student Hubs  - can help you with accessing the Student Portal, wi-fi, resetting your TAFE SA password and basic computing functions
  • Call 1800 882 661; for international students in Australia, call 1800 049 492. These calls are free and business hours are Monday – Friday 9:00 am – 5:00 pm (public holidays excluded). If you are Deaf, hard of hearing or have a speech impairment, contact us through the National Relay Service relayservice.gov.au.
  • TAFE SA Student Orientation & Support - a site within Learn which offers information, training and advice on studying online and using digital tools and other programs (requires a Learn login to access)
  • IT Student Help Desk - available in the atrium at Adelaide Campus for the first 2 weeks each term

Smiling staff giving help to student at laptop


  • Library - you can book an online or face-to-face (on-campus) appointment with a Librarian for computer related problems. During appointments, librarians can assist you with:
    • accessing the Student Portal, Collaborate, LEARN & email
    • electronic resources, referencing and research
    • computer related problems
    • computer skills
    • pointing you in the right direction for more support

    Book using the buttons below - both online and face-to-face appointments are available.

Tools and services

TAFE SA has a number of tools, programs and services you can use in your studies.  Click the headings below for information and assistance using these.

  • TAFE SA is committed to the principle that all students should have equal opportunity to access and participate in vocational education and training. Students with a disability can borrow assistive technology equipment through TAFE SA libraries to help them with their studies, including:
    • Ergonomic mice and keyboards
    • Hearing devices
    • Back supports
    • Enlarged keyboards
    • Smartpens
    • Ergonomic chairs
    • and much more.
    • Please note that assistive technology may only be borrowed or renewed with Student Services approval. Contact an Access and Inclusion Advisor to arrange loans for this equipment.

      Read&WriteGOLD is a customizable program that can read text aloud and includes tools to support reading, writing, editing and research, offering help as you work. It is installed on all PCs on TAFE SA campuses, and if you have a disability and/or medical condition, you may be eligible for a free take-home version. Please make an appointment with Student Services to discuss further.

      Read more about the support available to TAFE SA students with a disability here.

       

  • All official communications from TAFE SA will come to you via your TAFE SA email address or, if you have supplied it, your SMS number.

    Messages from the library (e.g. notices about items you have reserved, alerts, overdue notices etc.) will usually come via SMS (if you have provided your mobile number) or to your TAFE SA email address.

    You may wish to set up automatic forwarding in your TAFE SA email account so that all TAFE communications are redirected to your personal (home) email address. This can save you from missing out on important information from your lecturers, from Learn, and from the library.

    To do this:

    • Login to Office 365 via the Portal and go to Mail
    • Click on Settings (the cog symbol)
    • Scroll down to Your app settings and click on Mail
    • On the left-hand menu, under Accounts, click on Forwarding
    • Check the radio button Start forwarding
    • Enter the email address that you would like to forward to
    • Click Save

    For more information about using your TAFE SA email account, see this STUDY_GUIDE_-_TAFE_SA_webmail.

  • All students are provided a TAFE SA email address, which you can also use to login to TAFE SA computers and online services.

    Your email address will be sent to you via the personal email address you provide and is typically written as your full name, but can also include a number where several people share a similar name: firstname.surname@student.tafesa.edu.au or firstname.surname2@student.tafesa.edu.au

    To access your email, login to the Portal. Click Office 365 and then click Outlook:

    Office 365 menu with Outlook highlighted

    Any future correspondence in relation to your study will be sent to the above TAFE SA email address. If you prefer to receive correspondence via a different email address, you can set up automatic forwarding from your TAFE SA webmail (see Communications from TAFE SA).

     

  • OneDrive is a cloud-based storage service that allows you to create, store and share files from any web browser. To access your OneDrive, login to the Portal, click Office 365 and then click OneDrive:

    Office 365 menu with OneDrive highlighted

    It offers the following benefits:

    • Online storage – Your account can hold up to 1TB of files
    • 24/7 access – Create, view or edit your files from any web browser or from your mobile phone
    • Office Online – Create and work in Microsoft applications (like Word and Excel) directly in your web browser without the need to download the app on your computer; when you create and work on a file online in any Office365 program, it will be automatically saved to your OneDrive 
    • Collaboration – Need to finish work for a group project? Share your files with other students, work on the same file together, and see what everyone is adding in real time. OneDrive also provides version history so you can restore and work from older versions.

    See this guide for more information on using OneDrive.

  • Adelaide, Mount Gambier, Regency and Tonsley campuses have self-service laptop lockers (also known as Lapsafes) available for staff and students to borrow a laptop for use on campus for up to eight hours. You can find them:
    • Adelaide: outside the library
    • Mount Gambier: Student Hub
    • Regency: library entrance area in B Block
    • Tonsley: Building 5, Ground floor

    The lockers look like this:

    lap-safe

    To borrow a laptop

    Follow the instructions on the touch screen. Swipe your TAFE SA ID card and enter your PIN when prompted (your student PIN = the first four digits of your birthdate in ddmm format). Step-by-step instructions are also available on the front of the unit.

    Software

    All laptops feature Windows 10 with Microsoft Office 365, Autocad and Revit pre-installed. At Adelaide the laptops also feature MYOB. Using a borrowed laptop

    Logon to the laptop with your TAFE SA email address (for example firstname.lastname@student.tafesa.edu.au). Some things to consider when using this service:

    • You may be allocated a different laptop each time you borrow. For this reason, remember to save any work files to OneDrive or an external media device. Do not save files directly on the computer's desktop or local folders.
    • Ensure you return the laptop before the campus closes.
    • Report any faulty equipment to the library (Regency and Adelaide) or Information Services (Tonsley).

  • Many resources you'll use for your studies are available online via the library catalog.
     
    Please note that your library account uses a different login than you use for logging into the Portal, Office 365, MyTAFESA and Learn.
     
    Login to your library account (also known as My Library) by clicking on the Login link in the top right corner of the library homepage at https://tafesa.spydus.com and entering your ID and PIN in the popup box that appears (your student PIN = the first four digits of your birthdate in ddmm format), or by going to this login page.
     
    Once logged in, you can check what you have on loan, extend your loans and reserve items, and use our databases, streaming videos and e-journals.
     
    Below are instructions for accessing some different types of online resources once you have logged in to the library catalog.
    • The library subscribes to a number of online databases which contain many journal articles, reports, case studies, e-books etc. which you can use in your studies. These are only available to current TAFE SA students and staff.

      To access the databases

      • Go to the Databases page
      • Log in to your library account
      • Browse the list of databases and click on the link for the one you want to look at

      Searching the databases

      For help using specific databases, see these guides.

       

    • The library provide e-books from ProQuest’s Ebook Central. These are available via the library catalogue.

      To find e-books:

      Enter your search terms in the search field and select E-books from the menu box next to it.

      To open them:

      • Click on View availability then click the link that says Click HERE to go to e-book.
      • You'll be taken to an information page about the book, with options to Read Online or Download.
      • You can read a title online for 10 minutes. To access it longer, you will be asked to take out a "loan" so you'll need to login. If you choose Download, you'll be prompted to login straight away.
      • Before you can login, you'll need an Ebook Central account. If you don't have one already, create one at the prompt. We recommend you use your TAFE SA username and password so you don't have to remember another login. When you've filled in the details, click on Join Ebook Central.
      • You will receive an email confirmation with a link which you must click to activate your login.

      To read them (for longer than 10 minutes):

      • To keep reading an e-book for longer than 10 minutes, you will be asked to take out a "loan". For most e-books, this is for 7 days. If you need it for longer, simply take out another loan when the first one runs out.
      • While you’re reading online you can also download the whole book or individual chapters, and copy and print pages. You can't copy an entire book - each book will tell you how many pages you can print and copy and built-in protection will prevent you from copying or printing more than this.
      • You can also highlight text and add notes and bookmarks - these will be saved in your account so if you return to the book in the future they will still be there.
      • You can also download in PDF format to your own device to read offline (you won't be able to print or copy though). It can be accessed for up to 7 days, and must be viewed on the device it was downloaded to. To read offline you'll need:
        • On PCs and laptops: Adobe Digital Editions - follow the links on screen to download and install
        • On IOS and Android devices: Bluefire - you can get it from the app store

      Other devices are not supported. For more information, see this guide.

       

    • TAFE SA Libraries have videos available to view online from the ClickView streaming video library. You can view these videos on or off campus. If you are on campus, you should be able to access the videos directly from our catalogue without logging in. When off campus, you will be required to log in.

      To access ClickView videos:

      All the ClickView titles are listed on the library catalogue, so you can find them by entering your search terms in the search field and selecting Streaming videos from the menu box next to it.

      When you find a video you want to look at, click View availability. A popup window will appear.

      Select Click HERE to play video. A new tab will open. If you are on campus, you should be taken directly to the video. If you are off campus, you will be prompted to log into Clickview before you can see the video, so leave that tab open while you click the second link ("If you asked to sign in, click HERE to obtain login details") to obtain a ClickView ID. Go back to the second tab and use this to sign in and you will then be taken to the video.

      You can also access ClickView by

      Once you are signed into ClickView, you can browse the subject categories listed on the main page, or just use the search box at the top of the page. Once again, if you are on campus, you will be able to access the site without signing in, but off-campus you will need to obtain the ClickView login from this page or the Online Databases page before proceeding.

  • MyTAFE SA is your personal administrative site for your enrolment at TAFE SA . It allows you to:
    • Enrol into classes for your course
    • View a record of all your classes, including current classes or classes which you have completed, dropped or withdrawn from
    • View and print grades and academic transcripts from your current and past studies
    • View your account details, download an invoice for your fees or pay your fees online
    • Update your residential address and contact details

    Access MyTAFESA via the Portal or go directly to it at https://www.tafesa.edu.au/mytafe-sa.

  • You have access to the full suite of Microsoft Office programs (collectively known as Office 365) for the duration of your time as a TAFE SA student. This includes:

    • Outlook - for your TAFE SA email
    • Word - for word processing
    • Excel - for spreadsheets
    • OneDrive - where you can store and access your files
    • PowerPoint - for creating presentations

    ... and many others! You probably won't need to use all the programs included in Office 365, but you are welcome to try them out.  Access Office 365 via the Portal.

    The online version of Office which you access from the Portal allows you to create and edit documents directly in your web browser. Documents you create in the online versions are automatically saved in OneDrive (also part of Office 365).

    If you prefer to use the desktop versions of these programs, you can also install Microsoft Office 365 Pro Plus software on up to five personal devices, including your computer, phone and tablet. (NOTE - if you already have an existing version of Office 365 installed on your devices, installing these new versions from TAFE SA will overwrite what you already have - and will stop working when you cease being a TAFE student.)

    Below are some common questions you may have about Office 365:

  • As study and work move increasingly to an online environment, it is important to take steps to keep yourself, and those you interact with, safe and secure.

    Students and staff at TAFE SA have a right to work and study in an environment free from harassment, discrimination or threatening behaviour, whether working face to face or online. TAFE SA has a range of policies to describe your rights and responsibilities in detail - you can view them at https://www.tafesa.edu.au/apply-enrol/before-starting/student-policies.

    Cyber safety

    The Internet has become one of our central environments for work, study and entertainment, but it does have its risks – you may have heard about cyber bullying, viruses, phishing, identity theft, catfishing etc. Fortunately, there are some basic steps you can take to try and avoid these:

    • Use passwords that are not obvious or easily guessed (e.g. not your name or your pet's name, password or 1234)
    • Change your passwords periodically
    • Try and create different passwords for different sites rather than using the same one for everything.
    • One way of keeping your passwords secure is to use a password manager, which is a tool that can manage your logins and generate fresh ones that are harder for hackers to penetrate. There are many available, the two most common systems are LastPass for a cloud solution, and KeePass for an offline solution. Lastpass offers premium trial version for 30 days which continues as a free basic service even if you don't purchase a premium subscription. KeePass is always free with no cost.
    • Never allow others to use your personal account
    • Log off at the end of each session to ensure that nobody else can use your account
    • Promptly inform your lecturer, library staff or other TAFE SA staff member if you suspect you have received a message that is inappropriate, or you suspect you have a computer virus
    • Promptly exit an inappropriate website should you accidentally access such a site

    Netiquette

    As well as keeping yourself safe online, you're expected to respect the safety and comfort of other students. The term netiquette was coined some years ago to describe principles of civil behaviour online - here are some useful points of netiquette for you to follow in your interactions with other students and with the wider Internet community:

    • Avoid writing email or messages in all capitals. IT LOOKS LIKE YOU'RE SHOUTING! It's also difficult to read.
    • Keep your written communications succinct and focused. Few people like reading lengthy text on a computer screen. Many people now receive email on mobile phones and other portable devices, and small screens can make reading long messages challenging.
    • Remember that comments you post to a forum or chat session via Skype etc. are publicly available to ALL students and teachers in that session. If you want to make side comments to individuals during the session, make sure you address it to them only before posting.
    • Stick to the topic when posting a message. Don't indiscriminately post unrelated comments. This practice, known as spamming, can quickly lead to another unpleasant Internet practice, flaming.
    • What is flaming? Sometimes you might offend someone unintentionally. This can generate some angry, or even rude, responses in a public discussion such as on Facebook. This is called being flamed. If you retaliate, you may spark a flame war. To contain the heat, the best response usually is no response at all - or a heartfelt apology.
    • When sending email, make sure that the subject line accurately describes what the message is about. If the topic changes during a string of messages, alter the subject line. This also makes it easier if you want to refer back to an important email message again later.
    • Think twice before you send email. Consider all your electronic communications to be public and act accordingly. Electronic communications may seem temporary, but when you hit the Delete key, they don't go away. Email is usually stored on a mail server and can be retrieved. The same is true for online forums. What you post can't be retracted and there will be a record of it somewhere, so be aware of that before you post anything in haste.
    • Never send emails or other messages containing:
      • a message that was sent to you in confidence, without the approval of the person who originally sent the message
      • a virus or attachment that is capable of damaging another person’s computer
      • chain letters and hoax emails
      • a message that has been altered without the knowledge of the original author
    • Never post:
      • unacceptable or unlawful material or remarks, including offensive, abusive or discriminatory comments
      • material that is threatening, bullying or harassing to another person, or makes excessive or unreasonable demands upon another person
      • sexually explicit or suggestive content
      • false or defamatory information about a person or organisation

    If you feel uncomfortable with a message you have received whilst studying at TAFE, speak with your lecturer or another TAFE SA staff member about it. If you would prefer to make your complaint in writing, use the Feedback form on the TAFE SA Feedback or Complaint page.

    Essentially, netiquette is about treating people online the same way you'd like to be treated. This will help make your usage of the Web a positive experience.

    For further information:

    ESafety Commissioner (Australian Government) - provides lots of useful information on cyber safety

    Australian Cyber Security Centre - discusses current threats such as common spam and phishing emails, impersonation scams etc., and provides up-to-date information about how to protect yourself.

  • Your password is set to expire every 90 days. You are responsible for all activities recorded against your account, therefore it is important that you do not share your password with anyone. You can update the method used to reset your password to be an alternate email address or mobile phone number by following these steps:
    • Visit otpreg.tafesa.edu.au.
    • Sign in using your TAFE SA student email address and your password.
    • Follow the on-screen prompts to register a personal email address or mobile phone number that you can use to access a reset verification code.
  • Printing, copying and scanning facilities are available at all TAFE SA libraries. Costs for printing are usually:
    • Black and white - 10c per A4 page
    • Colour - 80c per A4 page
    • Scanning - free (but you'll need to have at least 10c on your account first)

    Your student account is automatically credited with $2 when the account is created. Add credit by clicking on the 'add printer credit' icon which appears on the desktop of all student computers on campus

    To add credit, you will need to pay using:

    • a credit or debit card (Visa, Mastercard) OR
    • a prepaid or recharge credit card (these are available at post offices, major supermarkets and department stores)

      See these instructions for more information and ask library staff if you need further help.

    FollowYou Printing

    When working on documents in the Library or Student Hub, Instead of sending your printout to a specific printer you can us. FollowYou printing to send your file to any of the printers located in the Library/Hub. This means if one of the printers isn’t working for any reason, you can go to another printer to release the printout. This is because you are printing not directly to a printer, but to a central queue, accessible by all the printers on campus.

    Simply select FollowYou from the printer list when you use the Print command, then go to any printer, swipe your ID card to login and press Follow-You on the touch screen. You will see the document(s) you have sent for printing listed on screen, press Start to print.

  • As a TAFE SA student, you are able to purchase some computer equipment from these vendors at discounted prices. Please note that they will require you to provide proof that you are a current student in order to qualify for these discounts.

    • Apple – Account creation and eligibility validation required
    • Lenovo -  Eligibility validation required
    • Microsoft - Eligibility validation required


    You also have access to discounted software from the Software WebStore.  You can buy the latest Windows 10, Adobe Creative Cloud or antivirus software for your personal computer, at a reduced price.

    NOTE - TAFE SA accepts no responsibility for software installed on any home device. TAFE SA will not offer any support if these software products are installed on your home devices. To purchase from the store registration is required. 

  • Your TAFE SA email address also serves as your user name to login to TAFE SA computers and online services. This combination of email address and password is sometimes referred to as Single Sign On because you can use the same login details for a number of TAFE SA systems.

  • Microsoft Teams is a collaboration tool in Office 365 that provides groups with the ability to work together and share information via a common space online. You can utilize features like document collaboration, one-on-one chat, team chat, and more.

    In TAFE SA, Teams is used to hold meetings and training and connect students and staff who may be at separate locations. Using Teams, you can Instant Message or talk with your lecturer or other students. In some cases, you may want to record your Teams session. Your lecturer will give you more instruction if they want you to use Teams in your course.

  • Most wireless devices should be able to automatically connect to the TAFESA-BYOD wireless network with the following basic steps:
    • On your device, go to the wireless networks area in the settings. Locate and select the wireless network called TAFESA-BYOD.
    • When prompted, fill in your username (your student ID number) and password (your network password)

    You might be prompted about a certificate when connecting. You must click Allow.

    Each time you change your network password you need to make the same change on your mobile device.

    If your device has issues connecting, use the guides below. You should also confirm your account is active by logging into a campus computer/laptop or asking library staff.

    TAFE SA students can also connect their devices to the Eduroam wireless network using their TAFE SA login credentials (email address). Eduroam is a wireless network used by many educational institutions worldwide. It is available at a number of TAFE SA campuses and can be used as an alternative to the TAFE SA wif-fi network at those locations. Once configured on your device, when you attend another participating institution’s campus, you will be automatically connected to the Eduroam wireless network and provided with internet access.

    See this page for instructions on how to connect to Eduroam.

    Click here or ask at the Library or Hub if you need further help accessing TAFE SA's wireless networks.

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