Carl H. Lindner College of BusinessCarl H. Lindner College of BusinessUniversity of Cincinnati

Carl H. Lindner College of Business

How Online Classes Differ from In-Person Classes

Before you enroll in online classes, consider how they differ from in-person classes.

In-Person Class

  • Class time is set on a fixed schedule every week.
  • Lectures dominate the class experience.
  • Faculty and peers chat during class and study periods.
  • Office hours are the mainstay to obtain extra help. 
  • Assignments submitted both in and outside class.
  • Course assessments are often during class.

Online Class

  • Learning driven by the student with checkpoints. 
  • Faculty lecturettes made available online.
  • Student engagement facilitated through discussion boards.
  • Assignments are uploaded to Blackboard.
  • Chat, email and other collaboration tools offer more help.
  • Assessments are online or are proctored in person.

These differences have an effect on the pace and rhythm of a class. Taking online classes require you to exhibit more initiative to stay on task. Although classes online do not take place in a classroom, they require as much or more discipline to stay abreast of the course materials.

However, online classes allow more flexibility and let you work through each week’s content at times and in places that better fit your active schedule.