Can I Go to College Online if I Don't Have Internet Access at my Home

Internet access for online college courses may seem obviously important, but can a student still take an online course with no internet at home? In today’s times, an automatic “no” might come to mind for students and professors alike. Even going to college in general currently requires a heavy deal of work on the internet. This is not to say, however, that a student should never sign up without internet access for online college. In fact, the answer to the question of whether or not a student can take an online course with no internet at home depends on a few key factors.

What Are The Requirements of the Specific Course?

It is a good idea for students with no internet at home to contact the instructor before enrolling and explain their situation. The instructor can give the requirements clearly so that the student can think for themselves about whether or not the requirements can be met with no home internet. For example, what are the usual deadline times for assignment submissions? If they usually are 5 p.m., the student will still have access to a variety of public locations for the internet. If they are 11 p.m., however, most of these locations will be closed, and the student will either have to complete the work earlier or obtain a different means of internet access.

Everyone’s course requirements and personal situation will be different, which is why there is no firm “no” answer to a student with no internet access wishing to take an online course. For one online behavior class, for example, a student may have an assignment which involves taking recordings of their online behavior during all waking hours. A behavior class at another school may not require such as assignment at all. One student with no internet access for online college may have an aunt with access who allows them to come over in the evenings, making the behavior class with the online behavior recording assignment doable. Another student without that aunt probably could not take the class.

Other Means of Accessing the Internet

Students can access the internet on campus in a variety of locations, learning centers, computer labs and the library. It is just up to the student to track down all these locations and their hours. In addition, the student should find out if anything special is needed to use a certain location (like usernames and passwords).

Public libraries also provide free internet access. Tracking down all public library locations within a reasonable distance as well as their hours would be helpful. This option may be easier for students who have their own laptop, as computer stations can fill up quickly in some libraries.

Other locations in public provide free internet such as bookstores, coffee shops and some restaurants. The downside to relying on this option is that a laptop is needed.

For students who are employed, places of employment can also be a means of internet access. Of course, this depends on the particular situation and employer’s rules.

Friends and family probably will be more than willing to help a student obtain internet access for online college. It is just a matter of the student explaining how important it will be for them to have abundant access to the internet to complete the course.


Access to the internet for today’s college students is of critical importance. The same remains especially true for those taking online courses. However, a lack of access in one’s home often is not a prohibitive factor if one plans well. This news article illustrates how even younger students have found ways to cope without having the internet at home. Knowing the requirements of the specific online course can be of much benefit to students without home access. Also knowing alternative means of access, such as coffee shops, and hours can help. All in all, what is required of students without internet access for online college is a higher degree of planning, scheduling and self discipline.

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