Why Online Learning?

Online learning can assist students to pursue their degree requirements outside of the traditional classroom setting and can accelerate or enhance their time to degree completion. DLI's online courses are especially important to students who are working professionals seeking a degree in their fields and to those students who cannot attend on-site classes because of work or family obligations. As stated in the Mission Statement, an additional and equally important benefit of online learning is that it helps students develop the technical skills and online learning strategies they need to pursue their future educational and professional goals.

The Online Classroom

While traditional learning takes place in a classroom with four walls, an online learning environment takes place in a virtual classroom contained in our Learning Management System, Blackboard. Blackboard Learn allows users to access course materials, activities, assignments, and to collaborate online. Blackboard Collaborate Ultra is an online meeting environment that provides real-time online lectures, recordings, office hours, and group collaboration. Students can access their courses and collaborate online from anywhere and at any time through a web browser. All course content is secure must be accessed with a username and password. Visit our Blackboard Information webpage to learn more.

Visit our Blackboard Information webpage to learn more.

Each instructor will customize and design their course differently using Blackboard. The majority of courses are asynchronous, which means you decide when to enter your virtual online classroom and do your work. Other classes may require synchronous meetings that require all students to meet at the same time. Each online course will have a student orientation and syllabus, which will provide you with details about the course design, course materials, assignment expectations, and course calendar.

How Does Learning Occur?

It all depends on the course, the instructor, and you. Instructors may require daily entry into Blackboard to participate in assignments such as discussion boards and blogs, while others may only require entry two times a week. Your instructor will lay out a learning path that includes various assignments and deadlines. You will be responsible for completing assignments and meeting deadlines in order to be successful in the course. How often you enter your virtual classroom will depend on the instructors design of the course and your time management plan for completing your work. However, you can expect to enter your virtual classroom multiple times each week in order to keep up with your work. Generally, if an instructor uses real-time meetings they are limited in number and/or they offer the option to view the meetings later from a recording. However, we strongly encourage your participation because you will better connect with both your instructor and your peers in these sessions.


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