Available courses

Moodle is an open source Learning Management System designed for distance learning. It's not the most attractive interface, but it is very functional and most reliable. I've been using it, on and off, since 2006. The system is used world-wide and has hundreds of developers contributing to its functionality and user friendliness. 

Here are some basic things to keep in mind when using Moodle... particularly when accessing my course material.

  • The Navigation table on the left-hand side of the page will direct your efforts and help you prioritize your time. From there, you can access the courses in which you are enrolled, your grades and any calendar-related events associated with your course. 
  • If the text is blue, it's a link to something important. As a rule you should click on the link just to make sure you don't miss something important.
  • Pay attention to the icons associated with course element content. They can help you determine priorities when accessing the course material. 

    • quiz This is the icon for a quiz... very important.
    • This is the icon for a forum topic...also important.forum
    • LessonThis is the icon for a lesson... usually, but not always will have something to submit... also very important.

Most of your Moodle related questions can be addressed here: https://docs.moodle.org/39/en/User_quick_guide

History does not exist for us until and unless we dig it up, interpret it, and put it together. Then the past comes alive, or, more accurately, it is revealed for what it has always been - a part of the present.
Frederick W. Turner III, 1971

The United States of America is unique in all of World History... for a whole host of reasons. A simple Internet search with the keywords unique America will offer the reader page after page of both opinion and documentation as to the uniqueness and greatness of the United States. Its history is complex, smattered with both dark and virtuous times and events; replete with violence, deceit, and corruption but also with goodness, charity, love and kindness. America is the most charitable nation on the planet. America has sacrificed more of its citizens in pursuit of freedom of people in other countries than any other nation in all of history.  No other country in all of history has accepted more immigrants to its protection. It is the most prosperous nation in all of history. America has endured because its founding principles were meant to uphold and protect the freedoms of the individual. Only in America are so many freedoms afforded to its citizenry. it is little wonder why so many people risk life, limb and property to come to America.

 So, here is the thing about America. The fundamental idea at the foundation of the United States of America was not and is not “Come here to America to Make Money”. The main idea was and continues to be “Come here to America to be Free”. From this perspective, prosperity (possible, aspired to, but not guaranteed) is a welcome outcome of a life in which the individual, being free from state-imposed coercion, has the luxury to focus his/her efforts on the pursuit of his/her passions. http://schirachreport.com/2019/08/06/why-america-is-a-unique-country-part-1/

In this course we will explore the critical events and moments that formed the United States of America. The course will lay a framework for understanding current events and allow the student to explore the truths and myths associated with the American Experiment. Our approach will be truthful; exploring both the good and the bad, the beautiful and the ugly, the virtuous and vile as it relates to American History. 

1. Request log in credentials here. Once you've received log in credentials:

2. Log in and use the PayPal link to purchase the course.

3. Return to the Learning Management site here at rruss.net. Use the log in link at the top of the page and begin your course.

This is a short course for those who wish to advance their abilities to think within the constructs of reason, principle and precedent. This course will challenge you to rethink your suppositions, rethink your value system and offer you a framework to form a world view that conforms to the reality around you. In short, this course is meant to develop your ability to use facts, precedent, and principles to assist your reasoning. This course will be perfect for you if: 1) You are not yet 26 years old. 2) Hold emotion based suppositions. 3) Simply want to advance your ability to distinguish between emotion based reasoning and fact based reasoning.

1. Request log in credentials here. Once you've received log in credentials: (You can bypass these steps if you are able to access the course material.)

2. Return to the Learning Management site at rruss.net use the log in link at the top of the page and start your course.

Writing for The Screen: Television, Film, Commercials, Documentaries, etc.  is different than expository or creative writing. In this course you will learn new approaches to writing that will expand your creativity and productivity. You will expand your understanding of how people process information and how to use that knowledge to create effective messages that influence, persuade and change minds. This course will not make you an expert in screenwriting or writing for the visual arts, but it will give you a good start.

Topics Covered in this Course

  • The Formats for Screenwriting
  • Story Structure
  • Plot vs. Story
  • Premise, Premise, Premise
  • Visual Writing
  • Writing Techniques for Long-Form Scripts
  • Character Development
  • Writing Dialog
  • Drama vs. Tension
  • The Promotional Piece
  • About Documentaries
  • Writing With Purpose - End of Course


  • Gain an appreciation for the craft of scriptwriting and writing for media 
  • Identify the important fundamentals of story and structure
  • Demonstrate your understanding of these fundamentals through a written story analysis
  • Identify specific types of scripts and the proper formatting associated with them
  • Demonstrate your ability to go from the idea stage of a script to its final draft
  • Demonstrate your understanding of this process by writing a synopsis, treatment, and a script
I hope you find this course both challenging and fun. Best of Success!


1. Request log in credentials here. Once you've received log in credentials:

2. Log in and use the PayPal link to purchase the course.

3. Return to the Learning Management site here at rruss.net and begin your course.

Digital Film and Video Production 1 offers a survey of the Digital Film and Video Production industry, as well as providing the student with foundational skills associated with professional Digital Film making and Video Production. The course offers an overview of the three phases of production; the importance of each phase and techniques that are employed by professionals in each of the phases. After completing the course material, the student should understand the importance of the three phases of Digital Film and Video production and how to implement them in a short video presentation. Topics covered in course include:

  • Terms and Technology Overview
  • Preproduction Techniques and Planning
  • Production Techniques 
  • Post Production Basics

Students can use any type of camera to complete their course assignments. The instructor will be providing guidance on how to best utilize mobile devices and DSLR cameras.  

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