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Your Guide to Virtual Services and Remote Learning.
Student with laptop

Online course FAQ

Online education offers you the flexibility to take courses in a place most convenient for you. 

We’ve rounded up some of the most frequently asked questions and answers about online education. Find support and feel confident, no matter which course format you choose.

Online course technology

Our online courses are created to be as simple as possible.

What hardware or software do I need?

Desktop Computers

Brightspace Learning Environment is supported on the following desktop platforms with the latest browser versions:

Platform Google Chrome Microsoft Edge Mozilla Firefox Apple Safari
Microsoft Windows Yes Yes Yes No
Apple Mac OS Yes Yes Yes Yes

Tablets and Mobile Devices

Brightspace Learning Environment is supported on the following tablets and mobile devices with the latest browser versions:

Platform Google Chrome Microsoft Edge Mozilla Firefox Apple Safari
Android OS
(Android phones & tablets)
Yes No No No
Apple iOS
(iPhone & iPad)
No No No Yes

Do I need internet and email proficiency to take a course?

You should be comfortable browsing the internet and sending emails with attachments. See the following:

Brightspace - Getting Started

PCC Student Resource Guide for Online & Virtual Learning

If you don't already have some internet and email experience, you may want to consider completing CSA 151 - Introduction to the Internet for New Computer Users - or an equivalent internet introductory course prior to enrolling in an online class.

How can I set up email?

When you enroll at Pima, you receive a Gmail account through MyPima.

Here's how to link your Brightspace and PCC Gmail accounts.

Where can I get on the internet?

If you don't have internet access at home, you can get online:

  • Using Xfinity Wifi Hotspots: Until further notice, all Xfinity WiFi Public Hotspots are now open to everyone on the “xfinitywifi” SSID. Public hotspots can be found in small/medium businesses and outdoors in commercial areas. Non-Xfinity subscribers need to accept Terms and Conditions to access the network and repeat when requested to continue to receive free unlimited access. Please refer to the map below for available public hotspots.
  • Through the open-access computer labs on all of PCC's campuses and centers
  • At many local libraries
  • By asking your friends and neighbors if you may borrow a computer or do your work from their home

How do I register for an online class?

You may register for an online class just as you would a traditional class. Go to MyPima, or visit any Pima campus or center.

Note: Before you can register for a class, you must enroll as a PCC student.

How do I access a class once I’ve registered? 

You will access your online classes by logging in to MyPima from the College homepage. Learn more about accessing your course homepage through MyPima.

Where do I get assistance when I have a problem? Is there support?

If you're having difficulty connecting to MyPima call the MyPima HelpDesk at (520) 206-4800, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, or send an email to mypimahelpdesk@pima.edu

For assistance with Brightspace:

Online course formats

Questions about the actual online courses? We have answers.

Will the same material be covered in the online class as in a traditional class?

Online course curriculum is identical to face-to-face classes. Only the mode of delivery and activities will vary.

How are assignments submitted?

Submission of assignments varies by class. Most assignments will be submitted by internet using the Brightspace platform or by email attachments. Some assignments may be mailed or faxed.

The course syllabus will provide specific directions about how to submit assignments. There will be deadlines, just like in traditional classes. Each class will vary, so be sure to review your class syllabus for specific due dates.

Will I take exams, and how do I do that?

Instructors will give quizzes, exams, or other modes of assessment. Review your class syllabus for specific information.

For classes that require quizzes and exams, some may be done online while a few may have to be done in person. Review your class syllabus for details.

If you find it impossible to come to campus for an exam, inform your instructor. Your instructor will work with you to make other arrangements for similar security.

How do I access library services and advising/counseling?

Pima's Library Services offer online library resources. Log in to MyPima and click on the Library tab to access online reference resources and databases.

The College provides online advising to assist online learners. Or, you can quickly contact an advisor to find the additional information you may need to be successful.

How much do online courses cost?

Tuition for online classes is the same as face-to-face classes. Additional supplemental materials and fees vary by class.

Online courses using Brightspace

Brightspace is the learning platform where you’ll access your online courses.

I can’t log in to Brightspace. My username or password doesn’t work.

You will access your online classes by logging in to MyPima from the College homepage. Learn more about setting up your MyPima account and finding your course homepage.

If you can't access your online course homepage on the first day of class, contact us at pimaonline@pima.edu or call (520) 206-4800.

I don’t see the new browser windows that are supposed to pop up in Brightspace.

Many personal firewall programs have features that prevent pop-up windows. When using Brightspace, you will have to enable the pop-up window feature of your program. For information about enabling the pop-up window feature, consult the user manual or internet site for the firewall program you are using.

When I try to access course materials, I get an error message about a browser plug-in.

Brightspace class materials may use various multimedia formats such as sound and videos. These require additional sub-programs called browser plug-ins. Instructions for installing the most common plug-ins are provided in the Browser Tune-up section on the Brightspace commercial site.

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