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About Online Courses

Online courses require the completion of assignments, examinations and final projects and also require participation in online discussions. The number of assignments varies from course to course. However, courses may have as few as three long assignments or many shorter assignments. Online courses usually include graded online discussion forums. Online courses include examinations, assignments and online discussions. Zero is assigned for each assignment and discussion not completed.


Online courses include all courses with the OL, NU or NG suffix in the course code. Online courses put you in contact with fellow students and mentors using the Internet, allowing participation in public course discussions as well as private, collegial discussions.

Registration for Online Courses

Students register for Online courses courses via Online Student Services. Use the GS suffix to indicate that you are registering for a Guided Study course. Your course will be offered in the University’s Moodle Learning Management System accessed via the myEdison® student portal. Please refer to our myEdison/Course Access page for login information and  instructions. Please note that your course(s) will appear in the myEdison® portal on the Friday before the term starts. Until then, your courses will not be visible but you can confirm your upcoming schedule in Online Student Services under “Academic Profile”.

When you register for courses, remember to provide the University with an accurate, preferred email address so that you may receive this important information in time to begin your course work. It is recommended that you verify your student records online at Online Student Services before your course begins. At your first log in, you will obtain your log on ID and password by selecting “I’m new to Online Student Services” and following the prompts. A temporary password will be generated and emailed to you. After initial log in, you will be required to change your password. For most students, your log on ID will be your first name, followed by a period, then your last name (example: frank.smith). Students who have the same first and last names will be assigned a number to provide them with unique log on IDs (example: frank.smith2).

Student Profile

Online courses are recommended for distance learning students who enjoy reading, writing and participating in course discussions in an asynchronous, interactive, online environment. Mentors are available to assist and provide feedback as necessary, but they do not assume a tutoring role. Flexible policies allow students who are unexpectedly challenged by schedule, personal, medical or family constraints to extend the semester when circumstances warrant. To see what courses are offered online, visit

System Requirements:

Windows Users

  • Minimum video display of 800 x 600 pixels
  • Audio card and speaker or headset
  • CD-ROM drive
  • Internet connectivity via LAN or dial-up connection through an Internet Service Provider (ISP) at 28.8 Kbps or faster
  • A full-featured Internet browser such as Microsoft Internet Explorer 6.0 or Firefox 4.X or higher

Apple Users

  • Minimum video display of 800 x 600 pixels
  • CD-ROM drive
  • Internet connectivity via LAN or dial-up connection through an Internet Service Provider (ISP) at 28.8 Kbps or faster
  • A full-featured Internet browser such as Microsoft Internet Explorer 6.0 or Firefox 4.X or higher

Additional Requirements for Nursing Students:

  • Office Suite: Microsoft Office suite version 2007 or 2010
  • Webcam with microphone
  • Adobe Acrobat Reader
  • Current virus protection
  • Current email account on file with the Office of the Registrar

For technical (computer) questions relating to online courses, call (888) 442-8372.

Preview Site

You may preview any online syllabus by going to the University website at Select a course of interest to view the course description and information on the formats in which it is offered. If the course is offered in an online format, you will see a Preview the Online Syllabus link at the bottom of the Web page. A preview provides a view of the syllabus, including the course objectives and assignments—and shows you what books and other course materials are required. Please note that the contents of the actual online course may differ from the preview due to updates or revisions.

Course Structure

Designed to be completed in a 12-week semester, each online course includes a detailed week-by-week assignment schedule (accessible at the online course site) that guides students through reading and writing assignments and other course activities. During the semester students submit assignments to a mentor and participate in asynchronous course discussions. Mentors facilitate student discussions, providing guidance and focus for the class, grade assignments, discussions and examinations, and submit final grades. There is no specific time when one must be logged on for the class discussion; thus, students can maintain the flexibility of independent learning.

However, those who wish may engage in informal discussions with classmates, providing real opportunities to exchange ideas and enhance the informal aspects of learning. Mentors are available for consultation by email or telephone. Most courses require a textbook (and perhaps a published study guide) and may require readings and media components. Self-assessment tests and exercises often are incorporated into the course materials. A few courses have computer disks containing additional information and exercises. Mentors formally assess academic progress through written assignments, participation in course discussions and proctored and non-proctored examinations or some other form of comprehensive assessment.

Midterm and Final Exams

Most online courses have two exams: a midterm taken in Week 7 and a final taken in Week 12. The midterm exam is usually an online, proctored assessment taken via the Online Proctor Service (OPS) and it typically covers material from the first half of the course. The final is usually an online, proctored assessment taken via the OPS and it typically covers material from the second half of the course. Students register through the OPS to select a test appointment during the official exam weeks. Some courses have a final paper or project in lieu of a final exam.

Toni M. Terry, BA

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