Student Guide

The current context of the COVID-19 pandemic makes it difficult to predict the teaching method that will be yours for the coming session. At the moment, the mode chosen and put forward by HEC Montréal is face-to-face : lessons will take place in class just as before the start of the health crisis.

However, in some cases, or if the situation changes, the teaching mode may switch to comodal or online to allow you to continue your studies.

To help you in this change of teaching format, HEC Montréal offers you this guide. It allows you to discover the strategies that you should know and apply to put the odds on your side to be successful in this context. 

Here come new challenges!

The online course you are about to take represents a level of difficulty equivalent to its original version. The learning objectives, the number of hours to devote to it, the course content and the level of difficulty of the assessments remain essentially the same; only the course delivery method is different.
You will have to tackle new challenges that you might not have faced in a normal classroom experience, but these may present themselves differently.


Study Plan

You need to structure your study plan, which is an organized schedule, outlining study times and learning goals. Stick to your study plan with high commitment.



You might understand that demonstrating a high level of autonomy in every single learning activity is very important.


Commitment and Motivation

You should manage yourself to maintain your commitment and motivation throughout the session.

Effective strategies for distance learning:

In 2021, Student Services has recently created a workshop entitled "Succeed in my Studies at a Distance". Click on the buttons to access the content of the workshop.


Computer Hardware


Checking your devices 

Make sure that all your devices are working properly for each application you will be using for your online course:

- camera
- microphone
- speakers
- headphone

Professors should not require you to print materials. However, if you feel that you need a printer, make sure you also have enough paper and ink so that no situation will catch you off guard.


Providing alternatives 

You should prepare right now some different alternatives you may use in case you encounter a technical problem, such as:

You could temporarily use your smartphone or tablet if your computer fails.

If you are experiencing internet connection problems, you could use "connection sharing" function on your cell phone (do not forget to check the data plan you have subscribed to) or ask a kind neighbor to give you temporary access to their network.

Back up your important documents and files regularly and reliably. 

Computer Softwares

Install the software you will need for your online course on your computer. You should provide basic software, such as Word for text editing, PowerPoint for slide presentation, Acrobat for PDF reading, or VLC for audio/video playing. Your professor will tell you what other software and platforms you will need. 
Install and configure properly all your software and platforms and test them before you need to use them, especially if you are participating in a synchronous activity. 
If necessary, do not hesitate to contact HEC Montréal's IT support service.

Textbooks and Printed Materials 

If you need to obtain books or printed materials, follow the instructions specific to your course and ideally do so as soon as possible and before the beginning of the course to avoid falling behind.

You may also order books or printed materials on Coop HEC (in French) or library website.


Survival guide for students
during synchronous online classtime

Good practices to adopt for everyone's well-being and success

Taking an online course is not without challenges. Adopting certain behaviours and avoiding others during synchronous sessions will enhance your learning and make the experience more enjoyable for your teacher and classmates. Don't start your course without this guide!


Educational Technology Course

Throughout your course, you will have to use a variety of educational technology tools. Whether it is an application installed on your computer or an online platform, your professor will tell you which tools you will need to get familiar with.

Use Teams – a collaborative work tool

Participate in a virtual class or workshop with Zoom

Record yourself using Studio Yuja in your ZoneCours course site

Resources at your disposal

You will be able to do many of the activities in your course at your convenience. Some activities could take place at specific times (for "synchronous" sessions planned by your teacher, team meetings, etc.), but for several other ones, you will need to organize autonomously your time devoted to them (for visualizing pre-recorded videos, reading documents, participating in a discussion forum, studying, achieving individual work, etc.). 

We recommend that you visit the HEC’s Student Services website for resources helping you to establish your study strategies and promote your academic success.


HEC Montréal provides you with many resources and skills to help you succeed in the context of an online course, such as time management technics, self-motivation skills, study tips, etc., and more.


Taking an online course may cause more stress and anxiety than learning in a classroom. Furthermore, the current situation is adding stressful and anxiety-provoking elements. Be aware that you are not alone in experiencing these emotions and that there are resources available to you.


Teamwork is an important part of university studies. While teamwork experience is often positive and rewarding, it may also be fraught with difficulties and challenges. Before you start your team-working task, take a few moments to explore this page of resources and tools. 



Mid-term or final exams

If your teacher allows it or if the health situation requires it, mid-term and final evaluations may be done online.on methods. In this case, your teacher will communicate to you as soon as possible the details of the modality of these evaluations.
Here are the recommendations in this regard.

Recommendations for Students using Test&Quizzes
Recommendations for Assignments 


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