FAQs About Online Learning

Student at home using a laptop.

Do I need to come to campus for an online course?

No. Online courses can be taken from anywhere with a reliable connection to the internet. For some classes, you may need to take an exam on campus or at one of many approved testing sites around the country.

Do I need to apply to Cecil College if I want to take an online course?

Yes, the registration process is the same for online courses as it is for on campus courses.

Do online courses cost the same as on campus courses?


Can I receive financial aid for online study?

Yes, online courses qualify you for the same financial aid and scholarships that on campus courses do.

Can I use my personal email address to take online courses?

No. When you register for an online course you will get a Cecil College email address. You must use your Cecil College email address to log onto your online courses.

I don’t know much about computers. What happens if I need help?

Cecil College’s Instructional Technology Office has an IT helpline available to you Monday through Friday from 7:30 am to 8:30 pm and Saturday from 8:00 am to 2:00 pm at (410) 287-4357. The IT helpline can also be reached by email at helpdesk@nullcecil.edu.

Do I need special software to take online courses?

In general, at a minimum, you will need a web browser (Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer, etc.), a reliable internet connection, and access to word processing software. Some classes may require other specialized software.

When do online courses meet?

Online courses are taught asynchronously or synchronously. Asynchronous courses are online classes with little or no designated meeting days/times. Assignments are completed independently with scheduled due dates. Synchronous courses are online classes that meet virtually and are scheduled on a regularly occurring day/time throughout the semester. See the Course Information page for more information.

Are online courses easier or more difficult than on campus courses?

Online courses are neither easier nor more difficult than traditional on campus courses—the work is the same. What makes online courses more challenging is that it is up to you to keep your coursework current. If you do not log on to do your work on a regular basis, it is easy to fall behind. Readings and assignments will have deadlines. Work submitted after a deadline will receive a reduced grade or possibly even not be accepted. Read the course syllabus carefully for complete deadline information.

How often do I need to be online and for how long?

You need to log on to your online courses several times a week. Failure to do so will cause you to fall behind in your coursework and miss deadlines for work to be submitted. You can log on as often as you like. If you prefer to do your work for shorter sessions, such as an hour a day, you can do so. If you want to get more done in one sitting, you can stay online longer. The important thing is to set and maintain a pace that allows you to get your work done on time.

How big are online classes? Will I get individual attention when I need it?

At Cecil College our classes are small so you get the attention you need. Your instructor will reply to your questions and concerns in a timely manner. Whether on campus or online, we want you to succeed in your studies.

I like classroom discussions and I learn a lot from them. Will I still get to hear from other students and the teacher online?

Online classes usually require class participation in the form of online discussions. Just like an on campus class, your final grade will often require participation in discussion groups on specific topics throughout the term.