students in a computer lab

Canvas

Technology Prerequisites

Online courses require some basic knowledge of computer technology. You will gain some skill and knowledge during this course; however, at a minimum, you need to be able to:

  • Open, create, and save word processing documents in Microsoft Word format; see the Microsoft Office Support website for information about these programs.
  • Find basic resources on the Internet.
  • Create and organize files and folders on your computer.
  • Send, receive, and manage email.

Hardware

You will need a computer with reliable Internet access, preferably broadband. For some exercises you may need headphones or speakers. Should you wish to use the Voice Tools within the course, you will need a microphone for your computer.

Some courses may require a proctored exam. You will need a camera, microphone, reliable Internet connection, administrative privileges on your computer, and use a supported operating system.

Review the system requirements for Remote Proctor Now. 

Contact your instructor for inquiries regarding proctored exams.

Software

Pierce College at JBLM uses Canvas, a learning management software, for all online and hybrid classes. Some instructors use Canvas to enhance their Face to Face courses. 

Visit the Canvas website to view the supported browsers and other system requirements.

  • As a Pierce College student, you will have access to Microsoft Office 365 for free.
    Go to portal.office.com.
    Enter your student email login and the screen will change.
    You will then be able to enter your email password and then you will have access to your 365 dashboard. Note: It is best to use Internet Explorer the first time you log in.
  • You will need Adobe Reader to view PDF files available in the course. Download Adobe Reader for free.
  • You will need a word processing program to complete written assignments, but a free equivalent is Open Office. Download Open Office for free.
  • You will need either PowerPoint or a PowerPoint viewer to view the presentations for the course.

Some courses may use specific software and have certain requirements. You may need a Windows or Mac computer with administrative rights. Be aware that military computers may not let you do certain things due to them being locked down. Many Android devices may not be usable with certain third-party software or plugins. Your instructor will notify you of any requirements you may have for the course. Please check early on so you can make arrangements to meet the course requirements.

The following instructions are critical for successful connection to your Pierce College online course:

  1. Access your course by going to the login for JBLM on Canvas.
  2. Your USERNAME is based on your Student ID. For most Pierce College at Joint Base Lewis-McChord students, it will normally start with 925xxxxxx. Do not use hyphens or dashes between number groups.
    Your default PASSWORD is the FIRST eight (8) letters of your last name in lowercase characters. If you have fewer than six letters in your last name, start over from the beginning, until you reach eight (8) characters (example: if your last name is Lee, use leeleele).
  3. Change your password as soon as you have logged on successfully. Do not use the same password for any other Canvas account you use.
  4. If you have any problems accessing your course, contact the Pierce College at Joint Base Lewis-McChord Canvas Helpdesk at 253-912-2250. The Helpdesk is available from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. ,M–Th, and 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Fridays (Pacific).

Canvas Help Desk

For assistance with Canvas, you may contact Pierce College at JBLM Technical Support directly, or open a Helpdesk Case with our Canvas Support Team.

  1. While you are in Canvas, click the Help icon in the lower left hand corner of the screen to open the help menu.
    Note: Prior to submitting a ticket, please ensure you have updated your Profile/Settings, by adding a personal email to your user account. Canvas uses your Pierce College email by default. Instructions to do so are available in the Student Guide button on the top of the page.
  2. Click the Report a Problem link on the help menu, and a pop-up will open where you will be able to provide the Subject and a description of the problem. You will also need to indicate how the issue is affecting you.
  3. Click Submit Ticket to open a support ticket that is sent to our Pierce College at JBLM Helpdesk/Technical Support team. The team operates during normal business hours (Monday through Thursday 0800 - 1700 and Friday 0800 - 1200 - Pacific).
  4. Click the Contact the Pierce College Military Program Helpdesk link to go to this page, where you can contact us directly by email or phone.
  5. To contact the Helpdesk by email, click on the link below to request assistance. You will be advised what to do by return mail. Your email must include your Full Name, Student ID (925xxxxxx), and the problem(s) you are experiencing. Please note that not providing your full name and Student ID will delay our response.

Email Technical Support for a Canvas-related issue.

You may also call us during normal business hours (M-F, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Pacific) at 253-912-2250.

Accessibility

Our Canvas Learning Management System has been awarded the Gold Level NFB-NVA Certification by The National Federation of the Blind (NFB), the nation's leading advocate for Internet access by blind Americans.

Canvas also provides the Voluntary Product Accessibility Template, or VPAT, which is a tool that administrators and decision-makers can use to evaluate Canvas' conformance with the accessibility standards under Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act.

Note: Instructor-created videos in your course will either have captioning, or be based on text/script located on the same page as the video. Course graphics will be tagged appropriately to accommodate screen readers.

If you find any area of the course to be inaccessible, contact your instructor at once. We will work with the Access and Disabilities support office to find a suitable accommodation for you as quickly as possible.

Accessibility Support

Students with disabilities who believe they may need academic adjustments, auxiliary aids or services to fully participate in course activities or meet course requirements are encouraged to register with the Access and Disability Services (ADS) Office. You may call the ADS Office at 253-840-8335 or 253-864-3301, or visit the ADS website for more information.

Purpose of Pierce College

The purpose of Pierce College is to provide opportunities for all who desire to pursue educational goals. As an educational institution, the College commits to the enhancement of individual, social, cultural and economic growth. The educational program is designed to provide quality instruction, individual support and personal service in fulfillment of each student's academic needs.

Counseling

Pierce College provides campus access to a licensed mental health counselor for its enrolled students. The primary role of the campus counselor is to provide short-term assistance, particularly dealing with issues that can interfere with students' educational goals. Common issues that come up are: struggling to adjust, needing help with coping skills, wanting help with relationship issues, dealing with grief or loss, needing referrals to local community agencies, etc. Not all issues require several visits; thus, oftentimes meeting with the counselor in a consultation capacity can be very helpful and sufficient. Counseling services are confidential and free to enrolled students. To contact the faculty counselors please visit the Counseling web page.

Plagiarism and Academic Integrity

If you use another person's ideas, words, music, artwork, computations, models, etc., in such a manner as to imply that the thing used was your own; or if you use notes, tests or memory aids during tests when such use was not expressly authorized; or if you steal or knowingly use test master copies to gain information prior to an examination date; or knowingly allow another person to use your work as if it were that other person's work; or otherwise act in such a manner as to gain for yourself or another an unfair advantage over other students, you may face disciplinary actions as stated in the Student Rights and Responsibilities Policy/Code of Conduct.

Academic Services

Pierce College District offers academic services for our students, including information regarding the following subject areas:

  • Associates Degree
  • University Transfer
  • Professional/Technical Programs
  • Continuing Education
  • eLearning
  • Programs at the Military Bases
  • Running Start Program
  • Basic Skills Program

More information on Pierce College District academic information

More information on the Pierce College at JBLM academic services (or call us at 253-964-6567)

Pierce College District and Pierce College at JBLM offer extensive student support services, including advising, student success and the Center of Excellence for Veteran Student Success. Please visit theStudent Support Services web page or contact us at 253-964-6567.

Complete list of Pierce College at JBLM support services.

Testing Services at Pierce College at JBLM are available for students. Please call 253-964-6606 for information about testing hours of operations and the many different types of testing available.

Pierce College at JBLM students have choices for Library Services. The award-winning Pierce College Libraries at Fort Steilacoom and Puyallup are available for all Pierce College students. A list of the many services they provide as well as contact information is available at the Library web page.

The McChord Library is located on the Ground Floor of the McChord Education Center at 851 Lincoln Blvd., Joint Base Lewis-McChord, WA 98438-1317. They are open Monday–Friday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Closed Saturday and Sunday. Phone is 253-967-5533.

The Grandstaff Memorial Library is located on Ft. Lewis at Bldg 2109, N. 10th & Pendleton, Joint Base Lewis-McChord, WA, 98433-9500. They are open Monday–Friday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Closed Saturday and Sunday. Phone is 253-967-5889.

JBLM librarians are available to assist students.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What are the prerequisites for this course?
Check with registration for prerequisites for a course.

Q: Is this a fully online course, or do we meet in a classroom?
Check the instructor's syllabus. You can search for your course syllabus in the class schedule.  

Q: How long is my course/what is my end date?
Your course is 9 weeks long 

Q: How often do I need to access the online course?
You should access the course at least three (3) times a week to ensure you see all messages in the course and participate in course activities.

Q: What do I need to do in the online course?
Your course syllabus has information on all the activities you will perform during the course. You need to read the chapter materials, and complete the activities as outlined in each course module.

Q: When do I need to turn in assignments?
There is a course schedule you need to follow. Look for it in the course syllabus. Normally, you need to complete one module per week.

Q: Who do I contact if I need help with the assignments?
For assistance with your assignments, contact your instructor via course communications.

Q: Who do I contact if I need help with Canvas?
With issues with Canvas, click the Help button on the lower left corner of the screen or call the Help Desk during normal business hours (M-TH 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Friday 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Pacific) at 253-912-2250.

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