Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What are PD Online® courses?
    ASCD's PD Online courses are web-based, media-rich learning experiences that help users deepen their understanding of today's most important education topics. Each course includes video content, readings, auto-graded assessments, downloadable applications, and reflections.

    PD Online courses address the topics that matter to today's educators from trending topics like the Common Core State Standards Initiative to always relevant topics like classroom management and student assessment. Throughout the courses, users explore the ideas of ASCD's most influential authors and thinkers, including Robert J. Marzano, Carol Tomlinson, and Eric Jensen; meanwhile, job-embedded applications allow users to translate what they learn into their own education practice, meaning the courses are as strong in theory as they are practical to your professional life.
    Return to the top
  2. Are the courses led by an instructor?
    No. PD Online course are asynchronous learning experiences that you complete at your own pace. However, the courses are flexibly designed to support many different types of users from individuals wanting to expand their understanding of a topic to schools wanting to provide their entire staff with professional development credit hours.
    Return to the top
  3. How long will it take to finish a course?
    In general, it should take 10-15 hours to complete a course, depending on how much time you spend on each component.
    Return to the top
  4. How long do I have to finish a course?
    You have six months to complete a course once you begin.
    Return to the top
  5. Do I have to start a course immediately after purchasing it?
    No. You have one year to begin a course from the time of purchase.
    Return to the top
  6. How do I purchase a course?
    To purchase a course, simply select a title from the ASCD Online Store or course catalog and add it to your shopping cart. ASCD accepts all major credit cards and can process credit card and purchase orders online.
    Return to the top
  7. How much does a course cost?
    Individual courses cost $155. We also offer excellent discounts for bulk purchases.
    Return to the top
  8. What is the course wallet?
    The course wallet allows users to purchase course access (in the form of credits) without purchasing a specific course. The wallet holds these credits until the user exchanges one for enrollment in a course.
    Return to the top
  9. What are the technical requirements?
    PD Online courses are compatible with Windows, Mac, and Linux-based machines and with all major Internet browsers, including Internet Explorer, Firefox, Safari, and Chrome.

    Although you will not need to install special ASCD software to play the courses, you will need the following:
    • An Internet browser (such as Internet Explorer or Safari) set to accept cookies and with JavaScript enabled.
    • An Internet connection (we highly recommend a broadband connection).
    • Adobe Flash Player 9 or later (available for free from
    • Adobe Reader to view print materials (available for free from
    We provide some course material in Microsoft Word documents. If you do not have Microsoft Word installed, you can elect to download the materials as Adobe PDF files instead.
    Return to the top
  10. Why won't my course start after I click the Play icon?
    If you have your pop-up blocker turned on, you will need to turn it off. Once you've disabled the blocker, click the Play icon again and your course should start. If you still experience problems accessing your course, contact Web Help.
    Return to the top
  11. Why can't I download the attached documents?
    If you have your pop-up blocker turned on, you will need to turn it off. Once you've disabled the blocker, click the document link again. If you still experience problems, contact Web Help.
    Return to the top
  12. I can download the PDF documents, but when I try to download the Word documents, I am blocked. Why?
    Some users report an issue when trying to open Microsoft Word documents from within the course. The issue relates to a security setting on the user's local computer rather than an issue with the document or course. The simplest solution is to download the material as a PDF instead using the link provided in the course. Click here for more information about this topic.
    Return to the top
  13. Can I make copies of the course materials?
    The course material is meant for one user. You can download, save, and print the course material for your personal use, but you cannot share this material with others unless they are also enrolled in the course.
    Return to the top
  14. Will I receive a certificate of completion?
    Yes. If you complete the course through ASCD's Learning Management System, you will receive access to a certificate of completion.

    To access the certificate, click on the View Course Report icon (next to the Play button) on your home page after completing the course. Select the Take Course Survey icon (clipboard at the top, right-hand corner) and complete the course evaluation. The certificate's icon will appear next to the survey icon shortly after you complete the survey.
    Return to the top
  15. I'm taking the course asynchronously. Do I need to upload my application activities for someone to grade?
    No, you do not need to upload the material for ASCD to review. The application activities are meant to help you apply the content to your practice. However, you may be asked to share your work with a professional development leader or university reviewer if you are seeking continuing education units (CEUs) or course hours.
    Return to the top
  16. Do I get a grade once I complete the course?
    No, you will not receive a grade. However, you will receive a score on your post-course assessment.
    Return to the top
  17. Does ASCD offer college credits for completing PD Online courses?
    No. However, a number of colleges and universities do offer college credit hours in relationship to ASCD courses. A current list of these partner colleges and universities can be found on the ASCD website. Contact the colleges or universities directly to learn about their requirements, preferably prior to beginning the course.
    Return to the top
  18. Does ASCD offer CEUs for completing PD Online courses?
    No. Although ASCD does consider each course as equal to a certain number of clock or seat hours, clock hours are not the same as CEUs. Every state and accrediting agency has different rules regarding the award parameters for CEUs. You should contact your professional development coordinator before you begin the course so you know exactly what is required to obtain continuing education units.
    Return to the top
  19. What if I don’t like the course?
    If for any reason you are not satisfied with your course selection, within 15 days of purchase, you may request a transfer to a different course of your choosing. We encourage you to send an e-mail to Web Help with any of your concerns.
    Return to the top