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Athabasca University

Project Courses: A Tutorial

SOLO—Safe OnLine Outreach

FootprintsThe themes that I identified led me to the ideas for SOLO. SOLO grew out of my interest in youth, youth issues and cyberspace. It has been built almost entirely using Project and Directed Reading Courses that I have taken to complete my Bachelor of Professional Arts, Communication Major. I started my first Project course in January of 2001, and have used three courses all together; one 300 level project course, and one project course and directed readings course at a 400 level.

The Plan evolved through conversations and phone calls over the period of the last year. I can't say exactly where it started because it's still evolving today. The ideas I started with haven't always stood the test of examination. I am a talker and sometimes come up with my best ideas by trying to explain to others what I'm thinking. One of the things I found helpful is to dialogue with other people. Just because I'm an online student does not mean my social needs get met on the computer! I kept contact with people I respected and with projects I was interested in supporting. I mobilized a network fairly early on. I sought out conversations with sharp, thinking, innovative peers, and shared ideas about their projects, and plans and shared mine.

Through these contacts and conversations, the idea for SOLO began to take form after my first semester. My idea was to create an online outreach service - initially I thought it would have a staff of youth workers who would respond in real time to youth who contacted SOLO through chats or email or IM (Instant Messaging). I knew that I would need to have a more extensive background on what online exploitation is, where it occurs etc.

The pressing question was where to start...

Updated February 18 2016 by Student & Academic Services

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