Boston University Online Learning – Student Resources
Boston University is dedicated to supporting you throughout your experience as an online student. Be sure to bookmark this page—you’ll want to visit it often. It contains information and documents that will guide you through the application and registration process, assist you with technical issues, and introduce the many resources you can access as a Boston University student.
If you have questions, we encourage you to contact us at any time.
Registration & Drops
These services connect you with course schedules, your account including grades and financial status, information about applying for a leave of absence, and deadlines and course dates.
Registration & Drops (read more)
Add/Drop a Course
After registering for classes, you can adjust your class schedule any time during the add/drop period on a space-available basis by going to the Student Link. Requirements and refund policies for dropping a class vary. Consult your school or college for details.
Leave of Absence
A student who is registered for a semester and decides not to attend must officially take a leave of absence or withdraw. A leave of absence should be taken when the student intends to return in a future semester; a withdrawal indicates a decision to permanently leave the University.
To request a leave of absence, contact the Dean’s office at your school or college of registration.
To download a PDF of important dates applicable to you, including first and last days of classes, registration deadline, last day for 100% tuition refund, and last day for withdrawal, please visit our Important Dates page.
Visit the Office of the University Registrar to see academic calendars, course schedules and descriptions, instructions for ordering transcripts, and other services related to records and enrollment.
The Boston University Student Link is an online resource where you can access information about your status as a Boston University student, such as grades, class schedules and enrollments, financial aid, housing, and account standing.
Online students can easily order textbooks from the BU Bookstore, and have access to BU’s libraries and online tutoring through their courses. Students who wish to request an accommodation or support for a disability may contact the Office of Disability Services.
Resources (read more)
Student Health Services/Behavioral Medicine
While online students are not eligible for treatment at BU’s on-campus Student Health Services offices, staff are always available to consult in emergency situations. Students experiencing a mental health crisis may call 617-353-3569 for Behavioral Medicine or 617-353-3575 for primary care at any time. Staff can help by providing referrals to agencies in your local community, or direct you to resources that are able to assist you in your health and wellness. Please visit the Student Health Services website for more information, and review these national resources addressing mental health and physical well-being.
If you are experiencing a true medical emergency, it is best to call 911.
Headspace for Mindfulness & Meditation
The Wellbeing Project has partnered with Athletics, Graduate Education, and Student Health Services to offer all BU students FREE access to Headspace – a research-backed app for mindfulness and meditation. Any BU student who is eligible to register for classes has access to Headspace.
Boston University’s official bookstore is Barnes & Noble @ Boston University. The bookstore offers course textbooks as well as BU apparel and other school essentials.
Boston University is home to 23 libraries on two campuses. Mugar Memorial Library, located on the Charles River Campus campus, is the University’s main library, offering a variety of online resources to students. For detailed information about accessing Boston University library resources, visit the BU Libraries website. For resources focused on using the libraries as an online student, see the guide Resources for Students in Online and Off-Campus Programs.
Boston University is pleased to work with Smarthinking™, an award-winning online tutor service available to all online students free of charge. Smarthinking provides tutoring in a variety of subjects. You have access to Smarthinking directly from your online courses. See the services and subjects offered by Smarthinking.
Disability and Access Services
In accordance with University policy, every effort will be made to accommodate students with respect to speech, hearing, vision, or other disabilities. Any student who may need an accommodation for a documented disability should contact Disability and Access Services at 617-353-3658 or at firstname.lastname@example.org for review and approval of accommodation requests.
Educational Resource Center
Online students are eligible to attend virtual Educational Resource Center (ERC) workshops. Students can schedule an Academic Skills Advising appointment using the form on the ERC website. Online students can participate in Graduate Writing Support services (Write Together, Accountability Partners, and Workshop Circles). Virtual Language Link sessions are to open degree students. Online students can also take advantage of ERC Writing Assistance and make appointments for one-on-one writing consultations.
The Newbury Center
The Newbury Center was created to foster the success of first-generation students at Boston University. The center’s goal is to become a highly visible, transformative unit of Boston University, offering programming and services designed to ensure that first-generation students experience the same sense of well-being, belonging, self-efficacy, and academic accomplishment as their continuing-generation peers.
BU Terrier Card
All students enrolled in online degree programs will receive a Terrier Card in the mail their first semester. The ID card will not include a picture. If you would like a Terrier Card with a photo, you must come to campus and visit the Terrier Card Office. Your replacement card will be free. *This does not currently include MED Campus programs.
To ensure your Terrier Card arrives promptly, please check that your address is correct before the semester begins. To update the addresses on file with the university, please sign into the Student Link and select “Personal.” Select “Address and Phone” and ensure both the local and home addresses are correct by clicking the item headers.
The Center for Career Development and the Office of Distance Education are working together to support online degree students/alumni and to provide access to career resources. See the services offered by the Center for Career Development and supplemental services provided by Smarthinking.
This is your central place to connect with information and resources for graduate students at Boston University. We encourage you to reach across the campuses and take advantage of the richness of our 17 schools and colleges and university-wide offerings. Find information here to tap into available resources and to connect with the graduate community here at BU.
These policies describe the responsibilities of Boston University students as individuals, members of the community, and representatives of the institution, as well as the rights, protections, and privileges that come with being part of the BU family.
Policies (read more)
Boston University is an independent, autonomous institution; admission to the University, continued enrollment, graduation, and use of its facilities are privileges, not rights. The Code of Student Responsibilities is established to provide a system for dealing fairly and responsibly with students whose actions fail to meet the standards of the University or infringe upon the rights of others.
Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action
Since its founding in 1869, Boston University has been dedicated to equal opportunity and has opened its doors to students without regard to race, sex, creed, or other irrelevant criteria. Consistent with this tradition, it is the policy of Boston University to promote equal opportunity in educational programs and employment through practices designed to extend opportunities to all individuals on the basis of individual merit and qualifications, and to help ensure the full realization of equal opportunity for students, employees, and applicants for admission and employment.
Sexual Misconduct/Title IX
The University complies with all state and federal discrimination laws, including Title IX of the Higher Education Amendments of 1972, the federal law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in education programs and activities. The Boston University Sexual Misconduct/Title IX Policy is intended to ensure a safe and non-discriminatory educational and work environment.
Users of the University’s computing facilities are required to comply with, and by using such facilities agree that they are on notice of and agree to comply with, be subject to, and grant the University the right to implement, the Boston University Information Security Policy, the Policy on Computing Ethics, and these Conditions of Use.
Grievance and Complaint Procedures
Policy on Access to Electronic Information
Boston University makes electronic systems, networks, and devices available to the community to carry out University business. Except as described in the Network Security Monitoring Policy, the University does not routinely access the content of users’ electronic mail, calendar, files, or network access logs (“User Information”) transmitted through or stored in systems, networks, or devices owned, leased or arranged for by the University or which the University possesses, has custody over, or controls (“BU Systems”). However, because access may be necessary in certain circumstances, this policy describes circumstances under which the University may access User Information and the processes and authorizations necessary for such access.