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CHS online and distance courses

ISU online and distance courses

ISU Course Catalog

Class syllabi collection

Register for single courses

Registrar’s officeUndergraduate students and non-degree graduate students wanting to register for single courses

Taking courses

To do before beginning the course

Determine the start date. Each course has a start and end date. Different institutions may have varied start and end times.

Read the coordinator email providing access information. One week before the course is scheduled to begin, the instructor/teaching institution will contact you with information about how to access the online course (providing you with a login ID, password, syllabus, etc).

Log in before class start date. Log in prior to the first day of the course, if possible, in order to:

  • Verify that you can access the course
  • Work through any introductory materials
  • Insure your computer is set up properly
  • Familiarize yourself with the course software

You can log into the course at any time of the day. Most instructors ask you to log in two to three times a week.

Learning platform

Learning platform/CMS

Whether the course is offered by ISU or by one of the GP-IDEA partner institutions, each institution uses an online learning platform — or content management system (CMS) — to host courses. At Iowa State University the CMS is Blackboard Learn.

Students use Blackboard Learn (at ISU) or the CMS of the partner university depending on where the course is located. Each campus coordinator facilitates access to the CMS prior to the first day of class. At least one week prior to your class you will receive an email from the institution’s campus coordinator with instructions on how to access the CMS.

If you have not received the email by one week before the class, contact your home university’s campus coordinator, who will contact the partner university’s campus coordinator on your behalf.

Courses will be available on the CMS no later than the first day of class.

Online course format

Online course format and requirements vary by the course but may include:

  • Reading
  • Discussion board/blogging
  • Online chats
  • Assignments
  • Projects
  • Quizzes
  • Papers
  • Online exams

You may also have the opportunity to work in groups to fulfill some of your requirements.

All courses are semester-based, and courses are released in units with specific deadlines throughout the semester.