About Online Learning

When you take a UBC Extended Learning online course, you benefit from a university-level curriculum designed and developed by UBC online educators and subject matter experts in Canada and beyond.

Regardless of the online course or program you choose, you are not learning alone. You complete your studies with fellow students and the support of online educators.

Your online curriculum, which may consist of lectures, case studies, resource lists, research papers, and other materials, is delivered through an online learning management system such as Moodle or Connect. The learning management system presents interactive learning activities and up-to-date content in a secure learning environment that you access through your Internet browser.

Frequently Asked Questions

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Will I have an instructor or an online resource person who will provide support throughout my course?

Online educators are involved in the delivery of our online courses. Different program units may have different names for their online educators depending on the role they fulfill within their course; they could be referred to as online instructors, online tutors, online facilitators, instructional assistants or mentors. Whatever their title, they are professionals experienced in online adult education who are responsible for instruction or guidance through email communications as well as online discussions, assignments, and projects to make sure that you get the most out of your online learning experience.

Are there scheduled times I need to be online?

Your online coursework can take place at any time of day or night. You can choose the study times that work best for you since the learning management system you will be using is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. For courses with assignments and projects, you will receive advance notice of due dates so you can plan your study times accordingly. Some courses have specific online components that require you to log in at particular times.

How will I communicate with online educators?

Depending on your online course, you may communicate in a variety of ways, including email, online discussion or chat sessions, as well as occasional phone calls.

How am I graded?

Some online courses and programs may be graded. Please check with the program unit responsible for your course for information on whether it includes grading. If it does, your coursework may be evaluated by a number of assessment tools, including assignments, projects, or exams with scheduled due dates.

When can I start my online course?

Each online course has a specific start and end date. Before or on the day your online course starts, we will send you an email message providing you with a link to access the online course, as well as a username and password to log in to the course. The first time you log in to the course, the learning management system will prompt you to choose a new password. A password reset feature is available through the learning management system. UBC will never ask you for this password.

What are Moodle and Connect?

Moodle and Connect are two different learning management systems that we use in our courses to support your online learning efforts. Each system provides information on orientation, schedules, grades, and instructor contact details, as well as learning resources and overviews of course curriculum. Your course will be supported by one of these two systems.

If you are having problems logging into the learning management system, please contact the program responsible for your course for assistance.

How many hours per week do I need to set aside for coursework?

The typical number of hours of coursework each week varies depending on the course or program and is outlined in the description of your course. Please check with the program unit responsible for your course if you would like more details. Some courses require up to 10 hours per week to read course content and participate in online discussions. Additional time may be required to complete assignments and projects.

Is there a difference in fees for international students taking an online course or program?

No, at the present time all students pay the same tuition fee.

Besides the course or program tuition fees, are there any other fees that I need to pay?

Some courses require additional materials outside of the online content, such as a textbook. Any materials required will be outlined in the course description. 

Do I need to purchase books for my course?

Some online courses do require that you purchase books or supplementary materials. This will be noted in the course description.

If I am interested in distance/online learning for undergraduate and graduate credits programs at UBC, where would I find information?

Information about UBCÂ’'s distance learning programs can be found at distancelearning.ubc.ca.