Online and Hybrid Learning FAQs
What kind of distance courses do you offer?
NSCC offers both online and hybrid courses.
Is distance learning right for me?
It is is not for everyone. Although the courses provide flexibility and convenience, they require self-discipline and self-motivation. To find out if distance learning is a good choice for you, take our short quiz.
What is the difference between an online and a hybrid course?
In an online course, all instructional activities are completed in an online environment. Online courses require no visits to campus for class sessions. However, students may be required to take proctored tests on-campus or in another proctored testing facility.
How do I enroll in distance courses?
The enrollment procedures are the same as traditional courses. Visit the registration page to learn more.
Are there extra costs or fees for distance courses?
No. There are no additional charges.
Can I get financial aid?
Yes, if you qualify. You should talk to a financial aid counselor.
Can I get a degree online?
Yes, you can. Please see our complete list of online degrees and certificates for more details.
Do distance courses get the same kind of credit as other courses?
Yes. Distance courses appear on your transcript just as traditional courses do.
Can I take distance courses as well as traditional courses as part of my course load?
Yes. You can develop a schedule of courses that mixes distance courses with other options.
What is the workload of an online or hybrid course?
You will find that taking an online or hybrid course is academically challenging because most of the work is done on an independent basis. This requires a major time commitment to read print materials, become familiar with audio-visuals, prepare assignments, complete projects, and take examinations. You are expected to spend at least 3 hours per credit per week (e.g., 3-credit course = 9 hours per week)
How do I contact the instructor?
Each instructor schedules telephone conference hours or email communication.
How do assignments get submitted?
You submit assignments online, electronically, or at drop-off points on campus, depending on the course and instructor.
What about tests and exams?
The instructor determines the evaluation procedures. Some instructors use take-home examinations; others require proctored testing with flexible scheduling at our Testing Center. For students who do not live locally, you can make alternative proctoring arrangements.
Do I need a computer?
Yes. You need access to the Internet and you should have basic word processing and computer skills such as downloading and attaching documents. Many audio and telecourses also require regular use of a computer. The college has open computer labs in Danvers and Lynn that you can use, but you will find it difficult to meet your deadlines if you rely solely on access to the computer labs.
What type of computer equipment do I need?
Please see our computer requirements page for details.
Do I have to be online at a certain time each day (or week)?
No, you will have deadlines to meet but you can work on them at times that fit into your schedule.
Can I work at my own pace?
Our distance courses are not self-paced. You will have deadlines for submitting assignments each week (or more often) and your fellow students will have the same deadlines. You can work on those assignments whenever you would like throughout the week, though.
Do I have to come to campus?
It depends on the instructor. Some instructors hold on-site orientations or require proctored testing at our testing centers. For students who do not live locally, you can make alternative proctoring arrangements.
What if I want to take a course online that you do not offer?
First, please contact us to let us know which courses you are interested in so we can consider offering them in the future. Then you can visit the Massachusetts College Online web site to see offerings from other community colleges across the state.
Faculty ResourcesClassroom Teaching
Technology Across the Curriculum (TAC)
Student ResourcesClassroom Learning