In online courses, students interact with the instructor, course materials and other students completely online. Some elements of the course may be self-paced, and are therefore asynchronous; other elements may require students and instructor to meet online at a specified time using a synchronous learning tool such as BigBlueButton or Zoom. Combining these elements creates blended courses.

Synchronous Courses

A real-time, online course where the instructor and students meet via web conferencing tools, at scheduled days and times. Instructors and students share information, ideas and learning experiences in a virtual course environment. Participation in synchronous courses requires students to have reliable, high-speed internet access, a computer (ideally with a webcam), and a headset with a microphone.

Asynchronous Courses

An online course where the instructor and students share information, ideas, and learning experiences in a virtual course space. Asynchronous courses do not have live, scheduled meetings online. However, students are expected to remain up to date with the deadlines and due dates provided by the instructor. These courses require high-speed Internet access and a computer.

Blended Courses

An online course where there is a mixture of synchronous meetings and asynchronous activities. This means students need to be prepared to meet some of the time online via web conferencing tools at scheduled days and times. The specific dates will be communicated by the instructor in the course outline. The asynchronous activities are intended to provide flexibility to students when the class is not meeting synchronously. Students are expected to remain up to date with the deadlines and due dates provided by the instructor. These courses require reliable high-speed Internet access and a computer (ideally with a webcam), and a headset with a microphone.