Frequently Asked Questions

How much does it cost?
Tuition and fees for online courses are the same as tuition for on-campus courses.

Do I have to go online at a certain day/time?
No. However, students enrolled in online courses must complete required course assignments in the time allotted by their instructor. A great benefit of taking online courses is not having a specific day or time in which students are required to be online. This time flexibility can work well for students who juggle a career and other responsibilities.  Please note, stable, daily internet and computer access is required for participation in an online degree program.

Keep in mind, in an online course, the student is assigned to read text supplemented by online resources and then actively engages in detailed online discussions with classmates. These discussions take place by posting messages on a discussion board within the virtual classroom, where each student is required to submit a certain number of responses over a period of days. This is called a threaded discussion. The instructor monitors the discussions and gives feedback. 

To participate in these discussions, registered students can simply log-onto St. John’s Central, click the ‘My Courses’ tab and select an online course to enter the virtual classroom.

How much work is required?
Online courses require more work and preparation than traditional courses. In order to be considered in attendance, an online student must post responses and keep up with the discussion. This means logging on every day to participate. On average, each online course requires anywhere from 8-10 hours of time commitment per week for reading, posting and completing assignments.

How do I connect with faculty members?
In an online course, students will have daily interaction with professors through email or the course discussion board. Some faculty members may also be reached by phone or skype if so indicated on their course syllabus.

What if I miss a session?
Online classes are always in session, so students can access the syllabus and their assignments at any time through St. John’s Central. Students are required to read everything thoroughly and clarify any unclear items with their professor. 

Will I ever meet my professors in person?
Online classes do not require face-to-face meetings.

Are there group projects? How are they handled?
Yes, faculty members will create groups of three to four students to collaborate on assignments and projects. Students communicate by posting their contributions on a discussion board, chatting online, through email or even phoning one another. Specific details can be obtained by emailing the faculty member assigned to teach the online course you are considering, before you begin the course. You can find the names of faculty members assigned to teach online courses by navigating through our course offerings page.

What do I do if I have computer problems?
Technical support is available via phone and online.

Will it look good/bad on my transcript that I took an online course?
Under New York State policy, transcripts give no indication that a course was completed online. Successful completion of an online course will provide you with the unique ability to develop self-discipline and the skills of independent learning that are increasingly important in the world today.

Do online courses use textbooks and do I have to purchase them at the bookstore or are they online? 
Yes, online courses do use textbooks. Students will have to purchase required textbooks for online courses just as they would for any other college course. Please visit the University bookstore online to find out what books are required for specific online course/s. We advise all students to secure their textbooks in advance to keep up with the demands of the class.