eLearning at Butler

Butler University will be offering 46 fully online and hybrid courses during our 2014 summer sessions. If you are considering enrolling in online and/or hybrid courses or you already have, the following information and resources have been provided to answer your questions and help you succeed.

What is Online Learning?

Online learning is a form of distance education that uses technology to create a virtual classroom. Course materials are delivered and received via the Internet. This provides you with access to online course materials from any computer at any time through a web browser. Online learning provides you with a hands-on experience and flexibility not often found in traditional classroom environments.

Online courses can be:

  • Asychronous - instructional time and interactions with peers are not  delivered "live." You choose when to access materials and respond to your instructor and peers within the framework of the course requirements.
  • Synchronous - some or all instructional time and/or peer interaction is delivered "live" and you are expected to attend online at designated times.

To further aid you in determining whether online learning may be a good fit, we encourage you to take a moment to complete this self-assessment.

How Does Online Learning Work?

Online coursework is taught by the same faculty who teach on campus, and receives the same college credit as the comparable on-campus course(s). As an online student you are expected to meet deadlines for assignments, quizzes, exams, discussion participation, group projects, and/or additional learning activities as assigned by your instructor.

Course materials often include documents, videos, web-based resources, pre-recorded lectures and seminars, and textbooks or eBooks. Discussions with your peers and one-on-one interactions with your instructor typically occur online via e-mail and discussion boards, as well as through teleconferencing technology.

Is Online Learning Right for Me?

Online learning provides an option for those who want a course from a Butler University faculty member while off campus over the summer or need flexibility in their on-campus summer schedule. However, it may take some time to become accustom to the rigors and requirements of online learning.

Online coursework requires substantial self-discipline and commitment to learning. Online courses are as rigorous and require the same time commitment as campus based courses. As online student you assume a more active role in managing your learning experience, and therefore, you should be:

  • Independent
  • Motivated
  • A Good Time Manager

To aid you in determining whether online learning may be a good fit, we encourage you to take a few moments to complete this self-assessment.

What is Hybrid Learning?

Some courses combine aspects of online learning with classroom-based instruction to give you the flexibility of online learning and the benefits of face-to-face time with your instructor and peers. The amount of time you are required to complete course work online and attend campus-based classroom sessions varies from course to course. Your instructor determines how much time is spent in each learning environment.  To determine if a hybrid course fits into your schedule, please refer to the schedule of classes to confirm the dates and times for the required on-campus sessions.

What are the Technical Requirements for Online Learning?

Online and hybrid courses are delivered through a Learning Management System (LMS).  Butler uses the Moodle LMS. In order for Moodle to function properly and access course materials you will need:

  • Computer with an internet connection. A broadband internet connection is preferred.
  • Compatible operating system and browser. A computer manufactured within the last three years with a current version of Mozilla Firefox or Google Chrome browser is sufficient.
  • JavaScript enabled.
  • Flash Player installed.
  • USB headset with microphone and a webcam to participate in sychronous course events (required by some instructors). Please note: the speakers and microphone built into the computer ARE NOT sufficient.

Always refer to your course syllabus for detailed information concerning the technical requirements for your course.

For more information or assistance setting up your computer for the online learning environment contact the Help Desk (317) 940-HELP.

Disability Related Accommodations

Students who wish to request disability-related accommodations are encouraged to contact Student Disability Services (SDS) immediately to discuss support services and accommodations. Students need to be aware that timely disclosure of a disability helps to ensure there is adequate time to make the necessary accommodations preparations, particularly in situations where captioning, audio description services or alternative text is required. At least two week advance notice is needed in order to ensure timely delivery of certain types of accommodation; although, every effort will be made to fulfill accommodation requests made with less notice.

Students who are enrolled in either online or in-classroom coursework must first register for services with SDS before accommodation requests can be considered. A student establishes eligibility by first submitting the appropriate written documentation to the office of Student Disability Services (SDS). After documentation review, an individualized discussion is then scheduled with the student by an SDS staff member after which a determination can then be made regarding reasonable accommodations. Please visit Student Disability Services for more information regarding the necessary documentation.

Please contact SDS at (317) 940-9308 or at sds@butler.edu for an individualized, confidential discussion regarding your specific situation.