Anywhere, Anytime, Online
You can complete many of our degree programs at your own pace. Penn State World Campus courses are asynchronous — meaning you don't have to attend online classes at a specific time. Our students use a combination of self-study and peer-to-peer interaction through an online learning network to facilitate instruction. You'll complete weekly assignments, readings, discussions, and occasional group work, as well as exams and other activities designed to enhance learning outcomes, all at times that are most convenient to you.
"In addition to my schooling, I work full-time as a zookeeper, and part-time seasonally doing data analytics for the NFL. I also have two small children who demand a lot of attention. Luckily, I have a very patient and understanding wife. Generally, I come home from work, eat dinner with the family and then sequester myself in my room to do school work. If possible, I try to make time to play with the kids. On my weekends, I will stay up late to do more involved work, like research or writing papers, and then try to spend the day with my family. It's been tough on all of us, but having clear goals for the future helps keep everyone (including the kids) on board."
—Nathaniel Schierman, M.Ed. Higher Education, spring 2019
What to Expect
As an online student, you will interact with people from different backgrounds and situations, providing opportunities to experience many perspectives and concepts throughout your studies. Using multiple communication methods such as chat, video conferencing, email, social media, discussion boards, and more, you'll stay connected with fellow students and faculty, building personal networks along the way.
Your courses are developed by faculty and learning designers who understand the specific needs of learners in an online environment. Special consideration is given to advance planning and setting expectations in the online classroom, so each curriculum is outlined in a syllabus distributed at the start of the course. This document provides an overview of the course assignments, grading strategy, student and faculty expectations, and course materials, as well as an understanding of the course goals and learning outcomes.