Online & Distance Education
Description of Distance Education Course Delivery Formats
An online class uses the Internet, the College's Learning Management System (Blackboard), and other web-based applications for all instruction, activities, assessments, and class interaction.
A hybrid class is essentially an online class, but also requires four (4) or more campus meetings. These campus meeting are scheduled in advance by the instructor. May be used for any combination of lectures, discussions, presentations, labs, examinations, etc. Required campus meeting dates are listed with the course information.
An iTV class is a course delivered using video- and/or web- conferencing technology to allow the instructor and students to have video and audio interaction from separate remote locations simultaneously via televisions and/or computers with Internet, video, and audio capabilities. iTV classes may require assignments and assessments be completed online outside of the regular class time through the College's Learning Management System (Blackboard).
Note: Not all BC3 credit classes are offered in the online, hybrid or iTV format. Visit the VIEW ALL CLASSES page to search for availability by delivery format/location. Distance Education classes follow the same start date, end date, midterm and final exam schedule as all BC3 classes (unless otherwise noted) and have set deadlines for assignments and testing.
ADMISSION, REGISTRATION, TUITION & FEES FOR DISTANCE EDUCATION
Students wishing to take courses and/or programs via distance education must first apply to BC3. For more information, please visit the ADMISSION page.
For out-of-state students: Due to State Authorization regulations, students residing in states other than Pennsylvania
should first review the STATE AUTHORIZATION page for a list of the states and territories for which BC3 is approved to offer
Distance Education. Out-of-state students looking to enroll in courses or programs
that customarily lead to licensure and/or certification should first review the PROFESSIONAL LICENSURE INFORMATION page.
Registration for Distance Education courses is the same as traditional courses. For more information, please visit the REGISTRATION page.
NOTE: Completion of the MyBC3 Orientation is required for ALL students taking their first online or hybrid class at BC3. More information is provided below.
Tuition and Fees
Students taking an online or hybrid class will pay the regular BC3 tuition and fees, plus an additional fee per credit hour. Please see TUITION & FEES for current tuition rates and associated fees.
Additional Course Materials
Additional costs for online and hybrid courses may be incurred separately from the College's standard tuition and fees, for items such as course-specific materials and supplies, web-based services, online access codes, software, at-home lab kits, etc. Notification of potential additional costs will be provided to students at the time of registration. Specific items required will be listed on the College's online BOOKSTORE and on the instructor's course outline. Costs may vary.
Online and Hybrid Class Requirements
MyBC3 Technology Orientation
The MyBC3 Technology Orientation is a free, self-paced and fully-online course that introduces students to the instructional technologies used and resources available to students at BC3. The estimated time to complete the MyBC3 Technology Orientation is: 2 hours.
- Students do not need to register for this course. Once enrolled in any credit course at BC3, the student will see the MyBC3 Technology Orientation appear in the “My Courses” area in Blackboard. Students will periodically receive email notifications alerting them to upcoming session start dates and reminding them to complete the MyBC3 Technology Orientation.
- Please note: Completion of the MyBC3 Technology Orientation in Blackboard is required for all students taking online or hybrid classes at BC3. Students enrolled in a face-to-face or iTV course may also be asked or required to complete this orientation by their instructor. It is highly suggested that ALL students complete this orientation prior to the start of their first semester at BC3.
- Completion of the MyBC3 Technology Orientation will be noted on the student’s academic record, and they will not be asked to complete this orientation again while studying at BC3. There is no tuition or fees associated with this course, it holds no credit value, and does not count towards the calculation of GPA.
Skills and Abilities
Students enrolled in an online or hybrid class are expected to have basic computing, word-processing, reading and comprehension skills, and prior experience using the Internet and email.
Students new to online learning can take the "Is online learning right for me?" self-assessment located on the FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS page.
- Students enrolled in an online or hybrid class are expected to have regular and unrestricted
access to an up-to-date computer system (Windows or Mac). Unrestricted access means
the student has the permission, rights, and ability to install software and plug-ins
on the computer's hard drive.
- Campus computer labs are available for all students to complete classwork; however,
these labs are run on a virtual thin-client environment. Some class-specific software
and web-based applications may not run in the virtual thin-client environment and/or installation of the application
on a virtual server may not be permitted by the software manufacturer, for example,
- Students must have access to a broadband Internet connection (cable, DSL, T1/LAN).
A dial-up connection is not recommended. Wireless (WiFi) connections are not recommended
when taking an online quiz/exam.
- Mobile devices (tablets and smart phones) and some Internet browsers may not be compatible.
- A webcam and microphone are required for all online classes, and may be required for hybrid classes.
- Additional purchase of class-specific software, test proctoring services, and publisher access codes may be required.
For more information, please visit the PERSONAL COMPUTER SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS page.
Online Testing & Student Identity Verification Guidelines
In compliance with federal regulations (34 CFR 602.17(g)), online instructors shall require students who participate in such classes and/or take exams to verify their identity by using a secure login, a pass code, a webcam, and a microphone; or to take proctored exams.
Students may be required to have photo identification for proctored examinations, which may include video and audio recording with consent of the student. In addition, new or other technologies and practices to assist in verifying student identity may be utilized.
Additional costs for proctoring services or use of other technologies and practices may apply and notice of such costs will be provided to students at the time of registration. Costs may vary.