Technical Requirements

Internet Connection
A fast, reliable Internet connection is a basic requirement for taking Michigan Virtual School online courses or using the Michigan LearnPort professional development portal. With increasing use of media components in our courses, your learning experience will be significantly better with a broadband Internet connection (cable, DSL or satellite), whether you are accessing our sites from home or through your school or another location. In some cases, a broadband connection is a requirement.

Your Computer
Your computer’s speed and the amount of system and video memory are important. Over the 10 years that MVU has been delivering high-quality online courses, the speed and capabilities of even the most affordable computers have increased significantly. If you are using a computer that has been purchased within the past five years, it is likely that it will be sufficient to use for our courses and web applications. Additional hardware such as a CD-ROM and/or a sound card (with speakers or headphones) is required for some MVS courses. Our web pages display best at a screen resolution of 1024 x 768 pixels and a color depth of Hi Color (16 bit/64K) or greater. Using these settings will require less vertical scrolling and improve the appearance of graphics.

We strongly recommend that all students go to the Course Catalog, search for their course, and review both the Prerequisites and Requirements sections for any special information well before the course starts.

Web Browsers, Java Script and Cookies
Most MVU courses do not require any special software other than an up-to-date Internet browser, such as Internet Explorer, Firefox or Safari. Generally, it is advisable to update to the latest supported full release of your browser of choice in order to take full advantage of increased security and functionality of the browser. MVU does not support beta (pre-release) versions of any web browser. If you are having problems displaying or interacting with any of our web pages, check to make sure that both java script and cookies are enabled. You can update your web browser and Java Virtual Machine by following these links:

Browser Plug-ins and Other Useful Software
The following plug-ins and software may be required to view certain types of class materials, or play audio, video, and animations on certain web pages. All are free and can be downloaded through the following links:

Security Appliances (Firewalls, Proxy Servers, etc)
Network access needs to be granted in your security appliances to MVU systems using the following internet addresses:

  • IP Address Subnet: 216.157.219.0/24 (255.255.255.0)

Domain names and all sub-domains of:

  • mivu.org
  • mivhs.org
  • learnport.org
  • mvlri.org

Individual courses may have their own additional connectivity requirements. Please see our Course Catalog to view the specific requirements for individual courses.

Adobe Acrobat Connect Pro Web Conferencing
Some courses make extensive use of a web conferencing tool called Adobe Acrobat Connect Pro (ACP). With ACP, students and teachers can talk, share files and hold a videoconference with inexpensive web cams, all over the Internet connection. Prior to enrolling a student, schools or parents should ensure that students taking these courses are using computers that meet the system requirements of Adobe Acrobat Connect. Our student guide for ACP is essential reading for all students who will use this tool in their course(s). Step-by-step instructions are given for configuring, testing and using ACP. The system requirements and a student guide can be accessed here: MVU ACP Student Guide.

Email
Email is critical for communicating with instructors, our staff and Customer Care. We recommend you use the email address and service provided by your Internet Service Provider (ISP), instead of a free service from Google, Microsoft or Yahoo. Most ISPs will allow you to create several email addresses; you might consider creating one for exclusive use with your MVU courses. Please add the mivu.org domain to your email service’s “white list” or safe senders list, to avoid MVU email from being identified as “junk mail” or “spam.” Only your ISP can troubleshoot or fix problems related to your email service; MVU cannot help with these issues.

Special Considerations for Apple (Mac) Users
Based upon MVU’s web statistics programs, the majority of users of our websites use the Windows operation system. Where we can, MVU tries to give equal access to uses of either platform. In some cases, an application or a resource we may use from a third party was not designed to be compatible with the Mac OS, or has limited functionality. We strive to make these situations known to our users before they need to access them, so that they can make other arrangements. 

Still Need More Help?
We’re available to assist you Monday through Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. After hours, customers may leave a voicemail, create a web form ticket or email Customer Care. The MVU Care Team will respond as early as possible on the next business day.  

Customer Care Center Toll-free: 888.889.2840
Customer Care Center Email: customercare@mivu.org

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