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About Online Classes

Introduction to Online Courses

All Orange Coast classes will automatically have an online component.  The instructor decides how much information to place online.
​If you're interested in taking "online classes" with 50 to 100 percent of the material online, check the class schedule. You can select "Online" in the search features to view which of OCC's courses are taught online.

How are online classes offered and what is Canvas?

Most OCC online classes are offered in a special online classroom called Canvas. This online environment has different sections for lectures, assignments, quizzes, online discussions, E-mail, and other important class components.  Canvas is easy to navigate and will help you keep track of your online activities and assignments. 

How often will I go to my online class?

Your instructor will give you the deadlines and a suggested pace to make you successful, but it will be up to you to decide when and how often to go online. Most good online students check in every day or two to see if there are new messages or discussion items.

How much time does an online class take?

The time needed to complete an online class varies by course, instructor, and the number of units you are taking. Online classes are designed to take the same amount of total time as their on-campus counterparts. This means that your reading and homework assignments, plus the time you spend reviewing online lectures and completing other online activities, will be the same as the total time you would spend if you took the class on campus. The only time you save is your commute time!

What kind of computer will I need?

You can use any PC computer or Mac computer with reliable access to the Internet and any of the browsers supported by Canvas. To make sure your computer is up to speed, and to check your browser and download any necessary software plugins, please visit the "Preparing for Your Online Class" page from the menu at the left.

Will I still need a textbook?

Yes, you'll use a textbook just as you would for an on campus class. Check the Orange Coast Bookstore for more information on the book you'll need. Some of the courses also use what is known as a "Access Code." If your course has an access code, you will need to buy it with the book or purchase it online. Your instructor will inform you if you need to purchase an additional access code and will provide you with instructions. 

Is online learning right for me?

Here are a couple of things that help students become successful online:
  • ​Access to Equipment and Internet
    • Canvas Technical Requirements
    • Once you've identified the appropriate equipment, do you have ready access to it?  Is the Internet connection reliable?  Is it in a quiet place where you can study?
  • Computer Knowledge          
    Computer skills are helpful in an online course. Both online and hybrid online courses require that you know how to:
    • Use email
    • Use word-processing programs
    • Save documents
    • Upload/download files
    • Navigate and search the Internet
    • Install new software applications
  • Online Readiness Quiz 
    • Are you ready to be an online learner? Before you take an online course, you should know in advance how an online class differs from a face-to-face course. Can you meet the demands for this new type of learning?

    • Take the following survey to find your readiness level for online learning. 

    • Instructions: Choose the most accurate response to each statement. Then click the Am I Ready? button.​

  • Tips for Online Student Success 
  • Support from Family and Friends
    Let your friends and family know you are taking college courses and get their support to help you succeed.