What Does Learning Look Like?

The School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC) invites you to be a part of our diverse community of artists, designers, and scholars by enrolling in an Adult Continuing Education (ACE) noncredit course or one of our exciting certificate programs. Engage in material exploration and learn new skills or refresh existing ones. As a member of our community, one defined by practice and inquiry, you will cultivate creative confidence, learning with and from your instructors and peers as you produce work based on your personal research and interests. Whether you have chosen an online synchronous, online asynchronous, or in-person course, our faculty are adept at cultivating immersive and creative learning experiences.

Online Learning Opportunities

Adult Continuing Education at SAIC has been offering online courses since 2015 and we are excited to have you join us virtually. All ACE online courses will be structured as either synchronous or asynchronous.

What is a synchronous online course?

Synchronous online courses will use the Zoom video conferencing platform, Canvas learning management system, and SAIC.edu email addresses to deliver course content and facilitate communication between the instructor and students. These courses meet at a specific time of day and are scheduled in Central Time.

What is an asynchronous online course?

Asynchronous courses are project-based with no set meetings times and 24-7 access to course materials. Weekly activities may include readings, video demonstrations, tutorials, online discussions, assignments, and critiques.

Students enrolled in asynchronous courses will have weekly deadlines encouraged to promote interaction with the instructor and peers. Some instructors may also offer optional video conferencing opportunities through Zoom.

Make sure to visit the Next Steps for Enrolled Students page to prepare for the start of your course.


Common Questions About Online Learning:

Supply lists for 1-week intensives, weekend intensives, and weekend workshops can be found at the link below one week prior to the first meeting or sooner.

Typically, supply lists for courses with a duration of longer than one week are provided to students during the first class session. However, some instructors may choose to provide a supply list to students in advance if specific materials are required during the first week of class. If your instructor has chosen to release the supply list prior to the start of your course, you will find it at the link below.

Course Supply Lists

Canvas is SAIC’s online learning platform and will be the central resource for all of your course materials and communication with instructors and peers. Visit Canvas or download the app for Android or Apple and login using your SAIC username and password.

The Dashboard is the first thing you will see when you log into Canvas. The Dashboard helps you to see what is happening in your current courses. For more information, visit How do I use the Dashboard as a student?

If you are not familiar with Canvas, it will be important to do at least one of the following:

For additional resources, review the information available online about Canvas at SAIC. You may also contact our Canvas support team at canvas-help@saic.edu

ACE online courses typically have between seven and 16 students.

Not necessarily. Course participation and activities will be structured in a way that best suits the course content and students enrolled. In addition to lectures, presentations, and group discussions, instructors may provide independent or small group sessions during the scheduled class meeting.


On-campus Learning Opportunities

Make sure to visit the Next Steps for Enrolled Students page to prepare for the start of your course.