Minimum Technology Requirements


To be able to effectively learn in an ever-increasing hybrid/online world, it is important to have minimum technology requirements. This page will step you through the definitions of types of classes offered at the School of Social Work as well as a list of minimum physical technologies that you should have available to you. 

Definitions: Face-to-Face (In Person), Online and Hybrid Courses

Hybrid Classes require students to participate partially in-person and partially online. 

In-Person Classes require students to participate fully in-person for listed days and times. 

Online Asynchronous Classes allow students to complete their work at their own pace. Students are given a timeframe – it's usually a one-week window – during which they need to connect to their class at least once or twice. 

Online Synchronous Classes require students to participate in partial to entire sections of class at the exact same time. Students and instructors are online at scheduled dates/times to participate in lectures, discussions, activities, and presentations. 

ALL courses located at the USG campus are limited to students accepted to the Shady Grove MSW.
Additional USG schedule information available at 

Section ID Delivery Method Eligible to Register 

HG1, HG2, etc. Hybrid USG students only 

HY1, HY2, etc. Hybrid Baltimore students only 

IG1, IG2, etc. In-Person USG students only 

IP1, IP2, etc.   In-Person Baltimore students only 

OA1, OA2, etc. Online Asynchronous ALL STUDENTS  

OS1, OS2, etc. Online Synchronous ALL  STUDENTS 

OM1, OM2, etc OMSW Online Sync or Async Online MSW Students only 

Technology Proficiencies

You should be proficient in the following:

Computer Hardware & Software Guidelines

Video Conferencing

In addition to having a computer, a large number of classes may require student participation in live virtual class activities using technologies such as Zoom,Blackboard Collaborate or Webex. The following recommendations will help you have a successful meeting:

Internet Connection

You will need stable access to high speed Internet to for your hybrid/online courses. Cable broadband in your own home is strongly recommended. Your Internet connection is critical in viewing the content in Blackboard and participating in live virtual sessions. 

Here are some places, in case your home network is interrupted, where you may find internet connectivity:

General Requirements

Internet Browser

Google Chrome is recommended for viewing all hybrid/online courses in Blackboard. However, the three major browsers (Chrome, Firefox and Internet Explorer/Edge if PC or Safari if Mac) should be installed as a backup for non Blackboard related content.

Download Chrome for free here.

For Collaborate Ultra, Chrome is highly recommended, and Safari/Internet Explorer are not supported.

Operating System


The following plug-ins are required for use with our online programs:

Adobe Reader

Apple Quicktime


Accessibility and Screen Readers

This is for information purposes, for any students who might desire to use a screen reader. Note that screen reader capability is  now built into both Mac  (Voiceover) and Windows (Narrator) systems. Informational links are below:

Information on Blackboard Learn Accessibility and Screen Readers 

Screen Readers Info from American Federation of the Blind


Per the campus IT anti-virus policy, we recommend installing the following software on Windows/Intel laptops:

Symantec Endpoint Protection antivirus (available at a discounted price from the UMB campus software office)

Email and Microsoft Office Apps

All Faculty, Staff, and Students receive full access to Office 365 including Outlook (email), Word, Excel, Powerpoint, Microsoft Teams, and more. Visit the CITS help page to learn more about Office 365. If you'd like to install the Office 365 applications on your computer, here's how you can get them:

Go to and log in with your @umaryland email address, UMID, password and Duo.

Once you are in, you should see a suite of tools, with a link in the upper right to "Install Office" - click that and choose Office 365 apps to download Powerpoint, etc. applications on your computer. You will then be able to open/play powerpoint files on your computer.

Blackboard Course Availability

After Graduation