Technical Considerations


An online student should be comfortable with computers and navigating the Internet. This includes the ability to complete tasks such as creating, moving, and copying files; installing software, surfing the web, sending and receiving email, and using various software programs.

Since the computer is the primary interface used in online instruction, it is necessary for the student to own, or have access to, a computer that meets certain technical specifications. The minimum computer requirements listed below will allow the student to participate in most facets of online courses. Online students should check with the specific program and/or course for additional requirements.

Minimum Computer Requirements

  • If PC users: A PC on which you can update Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, or Microsoft Edge via an internet connection.
    • Chromebooks are not recommended due to limited compatibility with third-party apps in courses.
    • Internet Explorer is not compatible with the current LMS and is no longer secure; this browser is not recommended.
    • The school can provide students with laptops: registration information is located here.
  • If MAC and LINUX users: A computer on which you can update Safari or any of the above browsers via an internet connection.
  • If Mobile Device users: Android 8.0 and iOS 14.0 or later are required for Canvas mobile apps.
  • Access to the Internet via 512kbps Modem or High Speed Cable/DSL (may be required for some courses). There are wifi hotspots on campus.
  • Monitor, keyboard, and mouse/touchpad.
  • Should be compatible with recommended hardware and software below.

Recommended Hardware

  • Webcam (minimum 360p).
    • The school can also provide students with webcams; registration information is located above.
  • Microphone or headset.
  • Headphones/earbuds.
  • Printers are available on campus.

Recommended Software

Certain courses may require specialized software for completing coursework. While this will vary between courses, the software packages listed below are usually necessary for any online course.

  • Adobe Acrobat Reader for reading PDF files (free download).
  • Java (free download).
  • Video players such as
  • Office 365 is available for free as student, staff, and faculty member of SFCC. This suite includes Microsoft Word, Outlook, PowerPoint, Excel, and more. You may download by logging into Office 365 through the Applications section in the MySFCC portal.

Internet Connectivity

In order to communicate with your instructor, submit coursework, research online resources, and correspond with other class members, you will need reliable Internet connectivity, a web browser for viewing relevant web sites, and an email program capable of sending and receiving email with attachments.

  • Internet Service Provider (preferably high speed with unlimited monthly access).
  • Web Browser that supports Java and JavaScript (Browsers recommended above support JavaScript).

Troubleshooting Skills

The online student must also be aware of the many problems associated with using computers. This often requires great patience and some degree of flexibility. The ability to troubleshoot problems with equipment such as printers, modems, and cable hookups is highly recommended.

Please check the Browser and Computer Requirements for Instructure Products to test your browser and check your internet speed to confirm your device/s are ready.

For more information, please contact Online Teaching and Learning at 505-428-1166 or email