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Learn online with Carleton this fall

What you need to know about online learning

While Carleton University has a long-standing history of delivering high-quality online education, we realize you may have questions about your unique first-year experience. Although the delivery of your courses may be different from what you were expecting, we are putting everything in place to support your success in these exceptional circumstances.

With the support of Carleton’s dedicated Teaching and Learning Services office, our award-winning faculty are putting significant thought and effort into preparing outstanding online courses in an inclusive learning environment. When you join Carleton this September, you will:

  • Have new opportunities to engage with course material
  • Experience creative virtual spaces to interact with peers and professors
  • Learn using different types of technology from wherever you are in the world

The shift to online learning

University-wide, we’ve seen faculty, students and staff come together and adapt to our current circumstances. Read about how Carleton’s Journalism program pivoted to online learning in March, or how the Sprott School of Business has embraced the benefits of going digital. See how students within the Faculty of Engineering use specialized software to run simulations and interact with on-campus lab hardware in real-time.

Browse our list of free workshops, mini courses and refresher classes that you can take this summer and throughout your first year. Make sure to check in with your specific faculty or department to see all the ways in which they are preparing to welcome you to Carleton this September.

Three different types of online courses

In Carleton’s online courses, students interact with the instructor, course materials and other students completely online.

  1. Some courses may be self-paced, which we call “asynchronous” courses.
  2. Others are “synchronous” and require students and instructors to meet online at a specified time using a learning tool, such as Teams or Zoom.
  3. Other courses are offered as a mix of both, so are labelled “blended” courses.
laptop virtual call

Take a peek into an online classroom

With our online learning system, cuLearn, you’ll have all the tools you need to succeed in your first year at Carleton. You’ll have access to program-specific modules that you can watch and replay and discussion boards where you can engage with your professors and peers.

Have a look at how instructor Chris Rudyk presents his courses, or sit in virtually on one of professor Kim Hellemans’ Neuroscience and Mental Health 1202 classes. Please note this lecture was filmed while students were still on campus – even pre-pandemic, Carleton was offering students an online learning option.

Student support that Carleton is known for

Carleton’s unique sense of community is at the heart of everything we do. We are certain that the legendary warmth of our community will continue to shine through in these unprecedented circumstances.

Be sure to check out our centralized webpage of information on how to best get in touch with the services that will assist you in every step of your academic journey.

A unique student experience

You belong to a special cohort of students who are navigating this time of transition together. We know that a huge part of any university experience is the ability to meet new friends and have fun experiences. While we must continue to respect physical distancing this fall, Carleton has introduced many virtual programs to ensure that your first-year remains full of exciting ways to connect with your classmates.

Browse the long list of activities that Carleton’s Student Experience Office (SEO) is now hosting to ensure that our students are staying connected. Here are some more highlights you can count on for the fall:

March, 2020

A student perspective

“I’m amazed by how fast and how well my transition to online is going. It feels good that our professors are here to support us no matter what. Everything is changing quickly, but we’re all learning and adjusting. We are one community and we all want to make the situation better.”

Bachelor of Science (Biology) student


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Explore Carleton's beautiful riverside campus inside our virtual tour. More scenes coming soon!