Online Learning

No matter where you live, you can pursue a biblically integrated education and professional development through Cairn University’s online graduate and degree completion programs.

As an online student, you’ll have the freedom to learn at the times and places that work best for you, while benefiting from the distinctions of a traditional Cairn education: a curriculum centered on a sound understanding and application of God’s Word, a faculty committed to professional and spiritual mentorship, and a degree carrying the weight of Cairn’s excellent reputation regionally and internationally.

Why choose online education at Cairn?

Flexibility to Learn Anywhere, Anytime
Complete coursework anywhere, anytime, through our asynchronous course design, coupled with the accountability and camaraderie of weekly course requirements.

Biblical Worldview Integration
No matter what your intended career path or field of study, Cairn is committed to helping professionals think about their current and future work through a biblical worldview lens.

High-Quality, Varied Instruction
Take classes via our eLearning online learning platform, granting you access to quality video instruction (tightly integrated with reflection and assessment) enhanced by interactive learning activities.

Committed Faculty Mentors
Our online courses are taught by faculty committed to professional and spiritual mentorship, walking alongside students as they grow spiritually, intellectually, and professionally.

Robust Academic Support Services
Online students receive the same robust support as on-campus students through the Masland Library’s extensive online resources, disability services and mentorship via the Academic Resource Center, synchronous and asynchronous feedback from the Cairn Writing Lab, and more.

Cairn University is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE) and Association for Biblical Higher Education (ABHE). Cairn has also been approved to participate in the National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements (NC-SARA), which regionally oversees postsecondary online education.

I started Cairn’s program last year and have found the online experience to be excellent. The courses have been challenging in a positive way so that I am excited whenever we begin a new course. I appreciate the flexibility online learning offers and the opportunity I have to learn at an institution like Cairn. Cairn encourages rigor in academia, while incorporating a Christian worldview.

Celeste S.
MS in Education

I enjoy online learning just as much as I do being in the classroom. The teachers are just as accessible as they are when a course is taken on campus. I appreciate the opportunity to learn online. Otherwise, finishing my degree may not be an option.

Monica C.

Readiness & Requirements

Earning college credit by taking distance courses is convenient and flexible, but passion for online learning, tenacity, and a willingness to work hard are essential along with responsible study habits and the ability to learn independently. Taking an online course requires self-motivated, self-disciplined, and organized students. While most of the learning takes place asynchronously (not needing to be online at a particular time), the online course study requires independent learning and strict adherence to a structured schedule with weekly deadlines. So you may want to ask yourself the following questions:

  • Can I devote 10–12 hours a week for each 14-week online class or 20-24 hours for each 7-week online class?
  • Do I have a reliable high-speed internet connection?
  • Can I access, view and upload files to an online system?
  • Am I proficient in using a web browser and downloading files?

If you answered Yes to the above questions, you may find that online learning is the best learning environment for you.

When it comes to skills, an online student needs to know how to perform primarily only five tasks:

  • Viewing instructional content and videos
  • Uploading assignments

  • Participating in a forum

  • Taking a quiz

  • Viewing grades and feedback

Step-by-step tutorials are available for students on eLearning.


Technology Requirements

Technology plays an important role in successfully completing online courses at Cairn University, but most individuals with a reliable desktop or laptop computer already have all the necessary equipment and software to succeed. As you consider online learning at Cairn, you will need to complete assignments, download course materials, and work on other tasks. With this in mind, you will be expected to have access to the following hardware and software:

Hardware & Peripherals

The student must have access to a desktop computer or laptop (PC or Mac) with the following minimum specifications in order to succeed in the online courses:

  • 2GHz (Core Duo) processor or better
  • 3GB RAM or greater
  • 160GB hard drive or larger
  • High-speed internet connection of 5 MB/sec or better (check your speed here)
  • 1024×768 resolution monitor or greater
  • Sound card with speakers and microphone (or headset with microphone input)
  • Webcam (built-in or external)
  • DVD drive (optional)
  • Inkjet or laser printer (optional)

Important Note: While most of the course activities may work, Chromebooks and mobile tablets  (including Microsoft Surface RT) are not fully supported for Cairn online courses. Students are still required to have a regular computer with the minimum requirements above.

To check your computer specifications, see this procedure.

Software & Applications:

The student must have the following operating systems and applications:

  • Windows 7 or later OR Mac OS 10.8 (Mountain Lion) or later
  • Microsoft Office 2007 or later (PC) or Office 2008 or later (MAC)
  • One of the following browsers: Google Chrome (recommended), Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer, Apple Safari 10.0 or later
  • Adobe Reader DC or later
  • Adobe Flash plugin 25 or later
  • Ability to add plug-ins to your browser
  • Local administrative privileges to the computer (for required software installations)
  • A Cairn University Gmail account, which you must check throughout the week

In addition, please check your syllabi for any course-specific software and/or technology requirements. Please note that as technology changes and improves, hardware and software requirements may as well, as we strive to maintain the highest standards for online instruction and learning.

See also these FAQs about online learning at Cairn. If you have any questions about these requirements, please contact or (215) 702-4554 or “live help” (green button) on the bottom left on any eLearning page. For additional requirements for a particular course, please contact your instructor.

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Cairn University maintains transparent compliance with regulations ensuring quality and fairness for all students. Cairn welcomes applicants from all over the world and all US states.

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