Aug 19, 2019  
Undergraduate Catalog 2017-2018 
Undergraduate Catalog 2017-2018 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Online Courses and Scheduling Options

Online education assists students in completing their educational goals in an environment that is conducive to teaching and active learning. This flexibility provides a viable alternative to students who have schedule constraints that don’t allow them to attend traditional courses, students who do not have access to a campus location, or students who need specific courses not currently being offered at their campus.

Online courses have the same course description and course learning outcomes as traditional classroom courses. Online courses are often taught by instructors who also teach the courses in the traditional classroom setting.

Any Columbia College student can take online courses. The students who receive advising and registration services from staff assigned to online services are referred to as remote students.

If a student receives advising and other student service from any campus, the student is referred to as a campus student.

Students should ultilize the academic calendar  for important date information that varies by venue.

The section of the undergraduate catalog listing course descriptions  is accurate for online courses. For more information about specific online offerings, visit the website at

The policies outlined in the Academic Program Information  section of the undergraduate catalog apply to online degree offerings.

Course Schedule

Course schedules are available at approximately two weeks before registration begins for a given session.

Notification of cancelled courses will be sent to the CougarMail accounts of students enrolled in the cancelled course. Students who register for courses online will be emailed course and email access instructions along with the registration confirmation.


Web-based online courses count for residency credit and financial aid applies for those who qualify.

Online courses are scheduled in eight-week sessions and follows Columbia College’s Academic Calendars . See the Academic and Administrative Policies, Regulations and Procedures  section of the undergraduate catalog for a complete listing of academic policies, regulations and procedures.

Students will receive academic advising at their campus and are required to consult with an academic advisor before they register for courses for the first time. After the first consultation AHE students are not required to contact their academic advisor prior to registering for more classes but it is strongly encouraged. With all Columbia College students, the ultimate responsibility for understanding and meeting graduation requirements rests with the student.

Course Format

The online course format allows students to participate in the course anytime, anywhere there is computer access to the internet. The course software used to facilitate online learning is Desire 2 Learn. The course that is offered online has been reviewed and approved by the appropriate full time faculty and department chairs.

Using discussion questions, exams and other assignments, students and instructors create a collaborative learning environment. This facilitates a forum for active learning. All exams and quizzes are taken online, with certain courses requiring proctored midterm and/or final exams.

This active collaborative learning environment requires students to do more on their own than they may in a traditional classroom setting. Online students must be prepared to commit the same, or sometimes more, time and effort as they would in a conventional class. The result is a challenging and meaningful learning experience.

Course Schedules are prepared by the Online Campus and are made available on our website at Notification of canceled courses will be sent to the CougarMail accounts of students enrolled in the canceled course. Students who register for courses online will be emailed course and access instructions along with the registration confirmation.

Day Students must obtain advisor and department chair approval to take an online course. Cost for day students is included in their day program tuition. Day students who take online courses as an overload pay the regular day program overload fee.

Overload Policy:

Long experience in administering accelerated (8 week academic term) college programs has taught us that it is generally not in the student’s best interest to enroll in more than 9 credit hours per session. Due to the fast pace of the course and the reduced time for reading, research, writing and reflection, a student’s academic performance will generally suffer if an overload of credit is attempted.

Students are required to obtain permission to enroll in ten hours or more during an eight-week session. This includes courses taken through Main Campus Evening, Online, and Nationwide Campuses. Only those students close to graduating from Columbia College, with a minimum 3.0 cumulative grade point average and a compelling reason to take a course overload in an eight-week session may apply to their Home Campus director. Students must first visit with their advisor to discuss all available alternative options. If an overload is approved, there will be no overload fee charged.

An overload is approved on a semester basis, allowing students to enroll in either or both 8-week modules during that semester as an overload. However, the overload in the second module is contingent on outcomes (grades) in the first module (poor outcomes may result in a student’s overload approval being revoked). Systematically, this will require an overload be entered for both modules (it cannot be done on a semester basis).

Overrides: Online courses have a maximum class size, ranging from 15 to 25 depending on the nature of the course. After a course is closed the campus staff may request an override. The student’s situation will be evaluated and coordinated with the instructor to determine if an override is possible. Overrides are granted on a rare basis for students with special circumstances such as fulfilling a graduation requirement which is the last course needed for the degree.

Proctoring: Remote students taking courses that require proctored exams must submit the proctor information by the second week of the session to the instructor. Proctors located at Columbia college nationwide campuses are automatically approved, as is the use of Proctor U; however, students must still provide the required proctoring information to their instructor. In addition, there is a fee for the use of Proctor U that is the responsibility of the student to pay. Students may use a private proctor, but each instructor will consider any other choice of proctor for approval or denial. Additional proctor choices the instructor will consider include: public librarians, high school or college instructors, high school or college counseling services, commanding officers, education service officers, and other proctoring services. Personal friends, family members, athletic coaches and direct supervisors are not acceptable.

Reduced tuition programs such as audit and warranted degree program are not available for online courses.

Student issues with an online course should first be addressed with the instructor of that course, then with the Online Campus.

Day Students Enrolling in AHE/Online Education Classes

  1. Students enrolled in the Day Program may be eligible to enroll in Main Campus Evening, Online Education or Nationwide Campus courses, but only under special circumstances. Day students may enroll at any Columbia College Campus for the summer session without special permission.
  2. Eligibility. Day students requesting permission to enroll in Main Campus Evening, Online Education or Nationwide Campus courses must meet one of the following eligibility criteria:
    1. They are seniors who, through no fault of their own, must enroll in a specific course to graduate. If students postpone until their senior year taking a course that they could have taken earlier, they do not qualify for enrollment under this criterion.
    2. They are students who will benefit educationally by taking a course that is not available in the day.
  3. Requirements. Students applying for enrollment in Main Campus Evening, Online Education or Nationwide Campus courses may be required to submit written evidence documenting why the course is not and was not available in the daytime. Students requesting permission to take a course other than those offered through the Day Program must complete a Day Student Enrollment Request for Online, Evening or Nationwide Campus Courses form and obtain written approval from their advisor, the Department Chair of their major and the Department Chair of the course.
  4. Students paying at the per-hour tuition rate, may not exceed a combined total of 11.9 semester hours during any one term (a 16-week semester, or 8-week session, or a combination of both). If a student wishes to enroll and his or her total number of semester hours exceeds 11.9, then that student must pay the full-time tuition rate. Students enrolled part-time (less than 12 semester hours when all hours, regardless of the class location, are combined) will be charged the appropriate part-time Day tuition rate.
  5. Highest priority for enrollment in Main Campus Evening, Online or Nationwide Campus courses is accorded students who have completed at least 84 hours toward a degree at Columbia College and who, through no fault of their own, cannot satisfy all graduation requirements during the Day and for whom no other options are available and therefore request to enroll in an Main Campus Evening, Online or Nationwide Campus course to graduate.