Online Advantage in Active Learning

In the Prerequisites for the Health Professions program, we don’t consider our online courses to be just “good substitutes” for classroom instruction – we strive to provide an exceptional online learning experience that takes advantage of the unique advantages of the online learning environment and may provide an even richer learning environment than the classroom. Let’s look at some of these advantages.


Learning online allows you to study where you want and when you want. You don’t have to log in to your class at a specific time each week. Our courses are organized into week-long modules that allow you to plan your time for reading, reflecting, and participating in each week’s activities.

Reflection in online learning

Perhaps one of the greatest advantages of the online environment is the opportunity to think about the information you are reading and discussing. Our weekly modules are organized to allow you a full week to consider the content you are reading about and discussing. This time for reflection allows you to fully absorb each week’s material as you move through the course.

Instructors who understand learning in the online environment

All of our instructors have experience in teaching; however the role of the instructor in the online environment is a bit different, so our instructors are prepared to adapt their teaching skills to meet your needs as an online learner.

They will use a variety of formats to provide you with the information you would normally hear in a lecture, and their instruction does not stop there. Your instructors will also be a part of the weekly discussions you and your classmates will have about the information and how it is important in health care practice, and they will provide regular feedback to you about your work.

Instructors who are highly accomplished health care practitioners

We select our instructors not only for their teaching skill and knowledge of the content, but also for their clinical expertise in health care. You will find that your instructors are active in clinical practice or health care research, and each is dedicated to helping you learn about the basic sciences that are the foundation for the understanding of the complex professional knowledge and skills you will need as a healthcare provider.

As our Instructors introduce you to each module of content, they will offer the benefits of their personal experience and expertise so that you are not just learning basic science; you are learning how basic science is used in health care practice.

Course design

Our faculty work with instructional designers to build courses that will take full advantage of the impressive opportunities currently available through online learning technologies.

Some of our design principles are quite simple, such as assuring that you have the information you need to plan your time to put your best foot forward in your class.

We also seek out and incorporate relevant instructional technologies such as virtual labs which allow you to participate virtually in some of the same experiences you would have in an onsite prerequisite science course.


While learning online in the Prerequisites program, you may be assured that you will be able to get the support you need. You can contact our staff throughout the week to learn more about any aspect of the Prerequisites program at or call (617) 724-6362.

For questions related to technology, our Help Desk in the Office of Information Technology will provide prompt, expert assistance to you 24/7 by email or telephone. See Technical Requirements for Online Courses.

And be assured that each of your instructors will make sure that you know when, how, and where to contact them when you have questions about the content and activities in each of your courses.

With these strengths the Prerequisites for Health Professions program will give you the background in sciences you need to succeed in building your career in the health care professions.

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