Frequently Asked Questions2021-02-23T10:43:55-06:00

Frequently Asked Questions

Who takes online classes?2021-02-23T09:58:42-06:00


Online classes are designed to meet the needs of every learner. Some examples of online learners: 

  • Students who have earned some college credits but not a degree
  • Students who “go back” to earn another degree
  • Students who just graduated high school and do not want a typical college environment
  • Students interested in continuing education 
  • Students of all ages with no prior college experience
  • Students needing to take a class or two to finish up a degree elsewhere
Is online learning right for me?2021-02-23T09:59:42-06:00

Online learning is a flexible learning plan that empowers students to earn a degree at an accelerated rate or at a speed that fits their personal lifestyle. Although courses are not self-paced, they are designed to allow students the flexibility to work full time, go to school full time, or be a parent or caregiver. 

Online learners are self-driven. While instructors and advisors are here to guide the learning process and teach the material, successful online students are organized and take action to do assignments, readings, and course materials on their own. Since there are no mandatory meetings or class sessions it is vital that students stay engaged in the learning process.

What are the benefits of online learning?2021-02-23T10:00:10-06:00

Two benefits at the forefront of online learning through Sterling College: flexibility and affordability. Courses and credit loads are flexible to meet the needs of each learner. Additionally, our rate per credit is one of the most affordable rates available and allows many learners to pay out-of-pocket as they go!

What are the acceptance requirements for Sterling College Online?2021-02-23T10:00:34-06:00

The acceptance requirements for applicants to Sterling College can be found here.

Can international students apply to Sterling College Online Programs?2021-02-23T10:00:57-06:00

Currently, Sterling College Online Programs are not available for international students. 

If you are a student applying as a non-citizen U.S. resident, you may be asked to provide a validation of identity in the form of a driver’s license, passport, Letter of Referral, Permanent Residence Card/Alien Registration Number, or a notarized document.

Can I use my VA or military benefits?2021-02-23T10:01:22-06:00

Yes! Please visit the veterans benefit page for more information.

Do you offer your courses and/or programs in my state?2021-02-23T10:01:49-06:00

Yes! Some reciprocity maps specify that California residents are not eligible. However, because we are a private institution, California residents are eligible to enroll at SC.

I am a high school student looking to get a head-start on college classes. Can I take online classes through Sterling College?2021-02-23T10:02:16-06:00

Yes! To do so, fill out the admissions application and select “non-degree seeking” student type. Transcripts and standardized test scores are not needed for admission of applicants who are not seeking a degree or initial teacher licensure. For more information, reach out to your admissions counselor by contacting us at 620-278-4275 (or toll free at 800-346-1017 or email 

We also offer early admission for high school students. Gifted high school students completing the 11th grade may apply for admission to Sterling College. The applications are reviewed in the same manner as those of high school graduates. Strong approval by a high school administrator is essential.

I am a homeschool student. How will this program work for me?2021-02-23T10:02:41-06:00

This program can work for you in two separate ways. Are you a graduate of a homeschool program? If so, visit this link for more information about applying to Sterling College. Please note, steps involving residential students are not applicable to online students. 

Are you currently a homeschool student looking to start taking college courses? To do so, fill out the admissions application and select “non-degree seeking” student type. For more information, reach out to your admissions counselor. Contact us at 620-278-4275 or email 

What is the difference between in-state and out-of-state tuition?2021-02-23T10:03:05-06:00

Nothing! Regardless of what state in which you reside, tuition is the same for all.

Can I afford to earn a degree online? How much is tuition? Are there other costs? Technology Fees?2021-02-23T10:03:29-06:00

For information regarding tuition, please visit our tuition page.

Do I qualify for financial assistance? Is there a certain number of classes I need to take to qualify?2021-02-23T10:03:57-06:00

Financial aid can be tricky. The best way to determine if there is any financial assistance available is to complete the FAFSA. You can do this by clicking this link: Apply for Financial Aid | Federal Student Aid. Once the FAFSA is received we will process a financial aid offer.

Sterling College’s school code: 001945

Students should plan to be enrolled in at least 6 hours per semester (both sessions in the semester combined) in order to be eligible for loans.

For additional information visit our financial aid page or email us at

Does Sterling College offer payment plans?2021-02-23T10:04:45-06:00

Yes, we do! A brief overview of payment options can be viewed here. For specific information and to ask questions, please contact our Student Account Coordinator at 620-278-4201 (toll free 800-346-1017 x.4201).

Is Sterling College accredited? What does it mean to have accreditation?2021-02-23T10:05:14-06:00

Absolutely! Details here. Accreditation is a system of ensuring that institutions of higher education meet certain criterion and quality standards.

Do you offer credit for prior learning?2021-02-23T10:05:58-06:00

Yes, however credit is not guaranteed. If the answer is yes to any of the following questions, chat with an enrollment services representative who will share your information with the Registrar’s Office for credit review.

  • Do you have a certificate issued?
  • Do you have a transcript that shows training hours?
  • Do you have documentation of a grade earned (or pass/fail) in the training classes?
  • Do you have a course description?
  • Do you know if the American Council on Education (ACE) has granted credit hours for your training?
I see that exams may require a proctor. How does that work?2021-02-23T10:06:32-06:00

Visit our proctored exam instructions page for more details.

How do I find information about upcoming sessions? How long does each session last?2021-02-23T10:06:58-06:00

Sterling College utilizes multiple session lengths to provide the best and most flexible experience for students. We have courses that run the length of regular semester, but we also have classes that run in shortened sessions. For those, we’ve divided the regular semester into two sessions (about seven weeks each). For information about upcoming sessions, visit our homepage and scroll down to view “Upcoming Sessions”.

What is the format of the courses? Will I be able to balance my personal life and classes?2021-02-23T10:08:18-06:00

Our weeks run from Monday-Sunday. We do not require students to attend set meetings or class sessions. Assignments are typically due mid-week and the end of the week. Though college is a commitment, we offer maximum flexibility around your lifestyle.

How do I buy textbooks? 2022-05-31T09:10:37-05:00

Sterling College partners with MBS Direct (a subsidiary of Barnes and Noble College) to provide textbooks for our students. Students may shop for their textbooks online with their student ID number (shop by schedule) or directly by the course ID number. Textbooks can be purchased directly from MBS or purchased elsewhere if it is more convenient.  Each course will display the needed textbooks for that course. Book vouchers may be used on the MBS site, but cannot be used elsewhere. The link to our bookstore can be found here. Further questions can be directed to

What Learning Management System does Sterling College use?2021-02-23T10:09:28-06:00

We use the state-of-the-art Canvas Learning Management System.

What is the recommended number of classes I should take each session? Is there a limit?2021-02-23T10:41:09-06:00

Our academic advisors work with individual students to create a degree plan that works for each student. Many factors affect how many classes students should take at one time: how quickly the student desires to progress, whether or not financial aid is utilized, the season of life and availability of time to commit to coursework, and much more! 

What speed of internet access do you recommend students have in order to take online courses?2021-02-23T10:41:30-06:00

A minimum speed of 512kbps is recommended to utilize Canvas (our learning management system). Sterling College recommends a speed of 10-20Mbps for live streaming and large uploads.

What computer equipment do I need?2021-02-23T10:41:55-06:00

Online learners should have a computer capable of running the most up to date version of web browsers (Chrome, Safari, Firefox ((for Mac users)), Edge, and Respondus). Additionally, students need to have the current version of Microsoft Office (offered free to enrolled SC students). For more information about the technology needed to utilize Canvas (our learning management system) click here