Distance Learning Student Information
DL Student Handbook

Registering for a Distance Learning Course

  • New and prospective students who have never enrolled in ACC credit courses should refer to the admissions process for details on becoming an ACC student. All admissions requirements must be met before students are eligible to register.
  • Current and returning ACC students do not need to re-apply. Former students who have not attended ACC in a year or more must update their files with Admissions & Records. Students must clear any holds placed on their records before they can register.

DL classes are listed in the Course Schedule with instructor contact information, instructions to complete the mandatory DL Course Orientation, the online course syllabus, textbook ordering options, and other important information needed to register for college credit classes. Note: Like other courses, DL sections have limited enrollments and may fill and close prior to the end of registration.

Distance Learning 101

Use these resources before you register to get a better understanding of what is expected from students taking DL classes, and what you can expect from distance education.

↑ Top

Beginning a Distance Learning Course  (DL Course Orientation)

Students must complete an orientation to begin each DL class. The orientation is an introduction to the course; students receive the syllabus, instructor contact information and office hours, testing and assignment deadlines, and performance criteria for the semester.

Refer to your course section's listing in the Course Schedule to find the orientation options and instructions for your class.


PHIL 1301 Introduction to Philosophy
54321 - Internet access required. J. Doe, 223.1234, email: jdoe@austincc.edu MANDATORY online orientation: www.austincc.edu/jdoe during 1st week of class, or attend Sat 8/21 10-11am EVC 2311

Students who fail to meet a DL course's orientation requirements may be dropped from the class. If you are unable to complete your DL Course Orientation as scheduled, contact your instructor immediately to determine if alternatives are available. Note: If there are problems contacting or receiving responses from an instructor, students should contact the Academic Department.

↑ Top

Succeeding in a Distance Learning Course

The following suggestions will help you get the most out of your course. Visit DL Student Resources for additional support information.

  • Blackboard is a course management system used in many of ACC's Distance Learning and on-campus classes. To find out if your class uses Blackboard, complete the DL Course Orientation.
  • Review the syllabus for details about textbooks and other required materials.
    • Purchase textbooks, software, and other instructional supplies from the ACC Bookstore.
    • For Online (ONL) Courses: Internet access is required. Students may use their own computers or the Computer Labs on campus.
    • For Instructional Television (ITV) Courses: Review ITV viewing options and check the Cable TV Schedule for broadcast details.
  • Note all assignment due dates and test deadlines given in the syllabus. Familiarize yourself with the course's testing requirements and procedures.
    • For most DL classes, including online (ONL) courses, students use the Academic Testing Centers on campus to satisfy course testing requirements.
    • Students who live outside the Austin-area and cannot travel to an ACC testing center may be able to have their exams proctored at another location through the Distance Testing program. Instructor pre-approval is required. Students are strongly encouraged to discuss testing options with the instructor prior to registering for the class.
  • Get in the habit of communicating frequently with your instructor. Let the instructor know if you have any questions or concerns about the course. (If you have trouble reaching your DL instructor, contact the Academic Department.)
  • If you are a new student, make sure to get your ACC Student ID Card early in the semester; it is required to use Libraries, Testing Centers, and Computer Labs.
  • Check your ACCmail for information you need to succeed, such as alerts about important ACC events, school closures, and official college announcements.
  • Find additional Help for Distance Learning Students including videos, information about student success workshops, and Live Chat.

↑ Top