Each week deals with a new topic. New weeks start on Sunday morning and end on Saturday evening. Each new units contains 1) an introduction to the topic at hand, 2) a set of readings (usually 2-3), 3) some discussion questions to answer (3-5), 4) discussion posts to reply to, and 5) a deliverable (a lesson plan, a reflection, a presentation, etc.).
Typically, you have to reply to the initial discussion questions (asked by the instructor) and then have the rest of the week to engage with your peers by replying to their discussion posts. Deliverables are usually due on Thursday evening.
Yes, to some degree. You will usually have access to the whole course from day one so you may do some of the readings and work on some of the assignments ahead of time. All collaborative tasks, however, must be done during the week they are assigned (giving feedback on a peer's lesson plan or commenting on a blog post, for example).
Typically, certificate courses are hosted in D2L (CU Boulder's course management system).
Since certificate students are distributed across several different time zones, most class activities are asynchronous (not in real time). However, in many certificate courses, you will have attend a set number of live meetings, work in small groups (usually 2 or 3 students) and you may have to organize live meetings (over the phone, video conference or a chat room). Note that certificate courses are NOT self-paced. You have weekly deadlines to follow for the various activities.
Yes, you will have a one-on-one video conferencing meeting with your instructor on the first and last week of the course. You may request additional meetings.
Everybody works at their own pace but you should reserve at least 12 hours of work per week per certificate course you register for.