Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

The FAQ page is currently being updated.

General Online Learning Questions

In a distance learning course, academic expectations are similar to a classroom course: Reading the assigned text, taking quizzes and exams, doing extra credit if needed, participating in class discussions, watching videos, doing some outside research, writing papers, and consulting with your instructor if you need help.

The difference is that many of these activities can be performed at a distance, in the comfort of your own home and on your own computer. For example, you may participate in electronic discussion forums (like class discussions, but not in real time), do research (on the Internet), talk to your instructor (e-mail or phone), discuss topics with other students (electronic forums), take quizzes (on-line), and submit assignments (electronically).

Detailed guidance is provided by the Instructor in Canvas.  Information may also be sent to you in your student email prior to the course starting. Included in the DL course will be course goals and objectives, assignments, due dates, grading criteria, extra credit options, contact numbers, etc.

By taking classes online, students can get the education they need with the flexibility of working around their busy schedules. While all course assignments have due dates, you can complete them any time of the day up to those due dates.  Access to Canvas and tutoring is 24/7, 365 days a year.

The course requirement and learning objectives are comparable to that of a classroom course.  Students who enroll in a Distance Learning course may find their learning enriched because of the resources available online, the ability to re-watch or reread course materials and accessibility to the instructor as well as student-to-student communication. The instructor may take their students on a "virtual" field trip or require a writing assignment that will take students to the state capital, to an elected representative or to a major corporation online.

No.  The registration fees for Distance Learning course are the same as a class offered on campus at Fresno City.

In most cases, you will not be required to come to campus, depending on the requirements set by your Instructor.  Most coursework can be conducted online, depending on the type of course. 

Confirm if the course is fully online, partially online (hybrid), or if it requires proctored assessments. For some courses, students will be required to complete exam(s) in person with the instructor, through the Assessment Center or with a proctor.

Distance Learning courses cannot be completed successfully using your phone. Students who do not have a computer with Internet access (or have a slow computer or who experience computer problems during the semester) can use the computers in the Computer Lab on campus (LI 117) or the Library lab.  Tablets may not provide access to all of your Distance Learning materials.  Check browser requirements at CANVAS support.

Each distance learning course has an assigned instructor of record. You will find contact information, such as an email address and phone number, in your course in Canvas. Although you are not in a classroom, you can still seek guidance from your instructor when needed. Instructors usually have information for communication and expectations for returning messages on their syllabus. You can still access your Instructor during their regular office hours both on campus and online.

General Questions About Courses

Students who are officially enrolled will be able to view select elements of their course in Canvas on the the official start date of the course.  A few days before, students will have access to “Quest for Success”.  These are modules on how to be a successful student online.  They will only need to be complete one time.  Students earn a badge, not a grade.  The modules are self-paced and your Instructor may or may not require them to be completed.  

While you do not need to be a computer expert, you do need to know how to:

  • navigate the Internet
  • use e-mail
  • download a program from the Internet and install it
  • conduct a search on the web

If a student is self-motivated, can follow instructions and likes to figure things out on his/her own, a fully online course will be an enriching experience.  All FCC students can access Hoonuit for professional video instruction on all kinds of things.  For Canvas, the introductory module where you’ll learn the basics of Canvas, how to navigate the course, communicate and use the calendar.  You can discover many resources with Hoonuit.  This is a free service for FCC students.

Remember, your course may not be available until after 7:00 am Pacific time on the first day of class.  For Student Technical Support contact 1-844-887-2223  If problems persist, be sure to contact your Instructor via email to keep your spot in class.

The Fresno City College Bookstore is located on campus, near the cafeteria.  There students will find course text(s) and materials arranged by subject and can be identified by the course reference number (CRN), and instructor name. Students have the option to order books and materials using the website form.  Some classes at FCC have ebooks that you can obtain in advance and be ready to go when the first day of class comes.  Be sure to look for zero cost textbook courses.  A separate search in Self-Service can provide that information.  While it requires coming to campus, the Library has a copy of every textbook on reserve for use.  The reserve book cannot leave campus.

Generally, no.  There is no need to access the course at an exact time since course materials are available throughout the week.  Your Instructor will inform you if there are exceptions.  Be aware…there are due dates and times within the course, usually week-by-week or unit-by-unit; you’ll need regular access to your course often so you don’t miss a deadline. 


Visit the Virtual Hub for Students for tutorials on How to Use Canvas and information to prepare for online learning.