How Does Online Learning Work?

GCC's online courses allow students to take regular college credit courses using computer technology to

  • learn concepts
  • supplement textbook information
  • communicate with instructors and other students
  • link to a world of applied information via the internet

Online learning is not a program in itself; it is a mode of taking courses required for a degree or certificate program.

Online learning courses follow the same academic calendar as campus-based courses. They are not self-paced, but adhere to a rigorous calendar, student learning outcomes and required competencies for completion.

Take the Readiness Assessment to see if you are prepared for online courses.

Please note: online and hybrid courses are just as difficult as traditional courses. Online courses typically require more reading and writing than traditional classes, and students must be ready to embrace the technology of the course delivery. Otherwise, online learning can be a great educational experience and it allows access to courses despite geographic or scheduling constraints.

Tips for Online Students

How to have a successful online learning experience:

  • Confirm you have your username/password and know how to access the online course.
  • Be sure to check in for the first time within 1-2 days of the start of term.
  • Read the course syllabus and check for any special instructions from the instructor — be aware of any instructor expectations as well as any assignment/ activity deadlines.
  • Tour the online class to become familiar with where to find assignments and activities — click on all the links and read the content.
  • Follow the assignments and associated deadlines as identified on the syllabus and/or special course instructions.
  • Establish a regular routine for checking for course communication and participating in course activities — students need to check in at least 3 times a week to the online class.
  • If you have a question or concern, contact the instructor through established course communication.
  • Read the Online Student Expectations