Student FAQ


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general troubleshooting

SFU Learning Commons

Here are some online tutorials to introduce you to some of the tools that your instructor might use.  

Please review these tutorials to familiarize yourself with the WebCT environment.


Quick How-tos

Where do I find my WebCT course?

  • Log into using your student computing ID. This will open the "My WebCT" page. This "my WebCT" page has a universal mail, provides calendar feeds from all your courses, and has links to some SFU resources.
  • Click on your course name to enter it.

Check this list of current courses using WebCT to see if your instructor has chosen to use WebCT this semester.

Online tutorials

Here are some online tutorials to introduce you to some of the tools that your instructor might use.  

Where are my grades?

Login to WebCT and click on your course name to open the course. Under the header MY TOOLS, click on the link to MY GRADES.

  • Only the grades that your instructor has added and released to you will be available for viewing.
  • You will only see your own grades. Your instructor may choose to release class statistics.
  • If you do not have a MY GRADES icons in My Tools, it may be that your instructor is not using WebCT to deliver grades.

What is My Files and how much space is in it?

  • My Files is an area in WebCT where students can store course-related files.
  • Only you have access to the files stored in the MyFiles area. Neither your instructor nor any other students have access to your private WebCT file storage area.
  • It is accessible from the MyWebCT page (when you log-in), in the tab called content manager, and has a storage capacity of 20MG.
  • As long as you are a student in good standing, you will be able to access your MyFiles under the content manager tab.

WebCT at SFU

What is WebCT?

WebCT (Web Course Tools) is a product designed to allow instructors to create and manage web-based or web-enhanced courses. Here are some online tutorials to introduce you to some of the tools that your instructor might use:
navigating in WebCT;
assessments and

Can any student access courses on WebCT?

Not all courses at SFU use WebCT. If you are registered in a course that has a WebCT course section, then you will automatically see when you login to WebCT. Ask your instructor if they are using WebCT.

How do I change my name in WebCT?

The Preferred Name from the Student Information System (SIMS) and myInfo now automatically migrates into a variety of systems, including WebCT, where it appears as the person's name.

To change your preferred name, go to: and login

  • Scroll down to the header: Personal Information
  • Click on Names, and click Edit beside the Preferred Name.
  • Save the change.
  • Wait overnight for the change to show up in WebCT and the SFU Email Directory.

I want to challenge a grade

Please consult the SFU grade policies for your rights and responsibilities.


Why can't I open the WebCT log-in page?

If you are having trouble accessing the log-in page, make sure that you are not using a bookmarked version of WebCT. Instead, type directly into the address bar of your internet browser. Do not let the browser "auto-complete" the URL (ie, make sure you ONLY type into the address bar).

I logged in, but my course is not there!

  • By default, students will not have access to WebCT courses until the first day of the semester.
  • Not all instructors choose to use WebCT. Ask your Teaching Assistant or Professor if they are using it.
  • If you just signed up for the course, it will take 24 hours before you are added to the course. Later in the semester it can take up to three days. Ask your instructor to enroll you as an auditor if it's imperative that you get access right away.

I keep getting an error message

Many problems in WebCT are related to browser settings. Try using a computer in a computing lab on campus if you can't access it at home.

I can only see 10 discussion threads/ learning modules

By default, WebCT will only display 10 discussion threads or learning modules on a page. Look in the bottom right corner of the screen in a discussion topic or in learning modules. If there are more than 10 items, you will see a drop down menu to select a page to view, or a small green arrow to advance, or a yellow square (looks like stacked paper) to change how many discussion threads or learning modules (records) you will see.

  • You can also set your paging preferences for all courses: in the My WebCT page, go to My Settings, choose My Tool Options and you can set the number of records per page.

I need help! where do I find it?

  • Here are some online tutorials on WebCT to give you a head start:
    navigating in WebCT;
    assessments and
  • In the upper right corner of the WebCT screen is a help button. The Help button is contextual and searchable. It is a good place to start.


My instructor put up notes. When I click on the link, nothing happens!

You may have your pop-up blocker enabled in your browser, and it's blocking the files.

  • In Internet Explorer, click on the "Tools" drop-down menu, then "Pop-up blocker", then "Pop-up blocker settings". Add the site:
  • In Mozilla Firefox, go to the "Tools" drop-down menu, "options", "Pop-up Manager", then "Allow Pop-ups From this Site". Add the site:

If that does not work, look for a yellow bar at the top of your browser window. This bar would have a note saying that it is preventing the download of a file to protect your computer.

  • To allow file downloads in Internet Explorer, go to: Tools Menu > Internet Options > Security tab > Trusted sites. Then add: as a trusted site.

The Whiteboard and/or Chat programs don't work properly - what's wrong?

The browser that you use (whether Netscape or Internet Explorer) must have Java enabled in order for the Chat and Whiteboard programs to function properly. Check here to download the latest version or go to the WebCT troubleshooting page for help with other error messages.