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What equipment do I need to take an online learning course?

MWCC uses the Blackboard learning management system to deliver course materials. As a web-based application, Blackboard itself has minimal hardware requirements for your computer. In order to use a browser with Blackboard, your computer most likely needs to meet the following minimum specifications:

  • Platform: Windows XP, Vista, 7; Mac OSX 10.4 or higher
  • 512 MB of RAM, 1G of free disk space
  • Reliable Internet connection (the faster the better)
  • Software: A word processing program, compatible with Microsoft Word, Adobe Acrobat Reader
  • Email account is required and is provided by the college
  • Browsers:
    • Firefox (PC & Mac) – Recommended
    • Internet Explorer
    • Safari (Mac)
    • JavaScript and cookies must be enabled.

Courses requiring specific software may have different computer hardware requirements than are listed here. Please check with the software manufacturer for specific requirements before installing the program on your computer.

I have never used a computer. Should I take online learning courses?

You should not take an online learning course if you do not feel comfortable with your computer skills. You do not have to be an expert, but you should have basic experience with

  • Navigating through files and menus
  • Saving files and organizing them in folders
  • Sending/receiving email and email attachments
  • Searching and browsing the Web
  • Using a word processor, e.g. MS Word

If you do not understand the computer terminology in these guidelines, it may be a sign that you are not ready to take an online course. Completing the requirements of an online learning course is very demanding.