What is Distance Learning?

Distance Learning, sometimes called distance education, online learning, or e-learning, is an educational opportunity that offers a deadline-oriented learning experience similar in structure to a face-to-face on-campus class. Students interact with instructors and each other interact using the online learning management system, Canvas.

On average, students spend about 10 hours per week per course in preparation, participation, and homework time. Students may spend less or more time per week per course depending on when the course is taken and difficulty of the course.

Online? Hybrid? What’s the difference?

An online class is taught completely over the internet using Canvas, with no classes scheduled on-campus. You may be required to come to campus for an orientation, for testing or for labs, but in general, attending class is simply a matter of logging into your class through the internet which can be accessed though our ACES portal.

A hybrid class is a cross between a traditional on-campus class and an internet class. Some of the class will be done online, but there are regularly scheduled on-campus meetings as well. For example, you may meet once a week on campus and the rest of your learning will take place online.

Online and Hybrid Courses are not for Everyone

Although online and hybrid courses provide excellent educational opportunities, they simply aren’t the best choice in all cases. To be successful, students must have a working knowledge of computers (including email, browsing the internet, using word processing programs and perhaps other software programs), must practice good time management skills, and be self-disciplined. 

Am I ready for Distance Learning?

There are tools available to help determine if distance learning is a good fit for you. Taking the time now to discover your learning style and plan for challenges will help you make the right decision. Access tools and resources that will help you understand your strengths and provide resources to help you succeed in the online environment.

Technology Requirements

Participating in an online or hybrid class has some technological requirements  that on-campus classes do not have. 

Student Services and Information

Technology Resources for Students

How to Succeed in an Online Class (pdf)

Student Canvas Quick Guide for Canvas

Technical Support for Canvas

College Resources

Student Handbook

State Authorization


 NC-SARA LOGOElectronic Campus

Southern Regional Education Board's Electronic Campus


Contact Us:

Mary Esther Cortez
Administrative Services Specialist


Adela Gonzales
Academic Program Coordinator and VCT Coordinator


Laura Lawrence
Director, Teaching with Technology


Charlie Young
Academic Program Specialist


Canvas Support