Distance education courses offer flexibility but still require a weekly commitment to meet deadlines. You will need to create and maintain a regular schedule for reviewing course materials, completing activities, submitting assignments, and reviewing instructor communication and feedback. Students who are successful in distance education classes are generally independent and self-motivated learners and comfortable with technology.
Consider taking our Online Learning Self-Assessment to determine if this method of learning is right for you. If possible, we recommend starting with just one class. As you become comfortable with the format, you can add more courses in future semesters.
The Canvas Student Orientation Course is entirely online and will benefit all students, even those just using Canvas in face-to-face courses. You will learn how to navigate Canvas, communicate with your instructor and peers, submit assessments, review feedback, and more. The course is free and does not count toward credit hours for your certificate or degree. Instructors and dual credit facilitators can also use this orientation to experience a student's perspective and extend their support.
To enroll in the Orientation Course, you must be registered for at least one credit course at Cisco College.
- Log in to Canvas to activate your account. For login instructions, visit the Canvas page on our website.
- Click on the Orientation Course in Canvas.
- Click on the "Enroll in Course" button.
Students can visit the Canvas Student Guides to review written tutorials about submitting assignments, posting in discussions, reviewing instructor feedback, and additional Canvas features.
Student Video Guides
Canvas also offers Student Video Guides with overviews of Canvas features and tools.
VidGrid is a video capture application that is available in Canvas. Most of your instructors will be providing videos they've recorded using VidGrid. Some may require that you create your own for introductions, presentations, or other assignments. VidGrid has created several tutorials about recording a video, accessing VidGrid from the Rich Text Editor, sharing a video, and recording for a Canvas assignment.
Zoom is a video and chat app that your instructor may use to communicate with you and your peers. This video from Zoom explains how to download the Zoom app to your device and join a meeting. You'll also want to review Student Tips for Participating in Online Learning with Zoom.
- Get Ready - Purchase textbooks and identify your login credentials
- Get Set - Learn Canvas and prepare your technology
- Go - Log in to your class on the first day and participate multiple days each week throughout the semester
Download our checklist for more details.
Check out these resources for additional tips:
Need help studying but can't make it to campus? Try our free online tutoring available through Upswing. Visit the Online Tutoring page on our website for more information.
Additional resources such as the Writing Center, Math Center, Food Pantry, Library, Career Services, and more can be accessed via Support Services in Canvas (must be logged in).