Getting Started

Welcome video

Welcome, students! Please watch this video with tips for academic success in the online Shelter Medicine program at UF.

Recent Orientation Session

Accessing your UF email account

As a student, all official communication is sent to your UFL email account. Please make sure you are checking your email regularly for important course updates, messages, and information about clearing holds and registering. Your GatorLink username makes up the first part of the UFL email address (the part before Your UF email can be set up two weeks after you have been admitted to the program.

Accessing your online courses in Canvas

The course delivery system currently used is known as Canvas. Students can access assignments, readings, quizzes and tests, and pre-recorded content using this system. Interactive discussion boards are available 24-hours per day for students to engage in scholarly discussions with classmates and instructors. Students can monitor their progress in a given course using an interactive gradebook tool. Courses will be delivered via a blended/hybrid mechanism (both synchronously and asynchronously). Content will be delivered within modules that are conceptually grouped. Some modules, due to the complexity of the content, will be longer than other modules. Assignments will be given during each module and are due by the completion of the module on a designated date. The course will be completed within a semester time frame. Modules will include a combination of readings, recordings, webinars, group discussions, and student research projects. Experts in shelter medicine will be available as resources to students by use of asynchronous and/or live chats. During the registration process you will be asked to create a GatorLink account. The GatorLink login and password you create is what you will use to access e-Learning. A couple weeks before classes start, detailed instructions will be sent out to assist you with accessing your classes. After you complete the application and course registration process, you can access online courses by logging into UF’s e-Learning website at any time. Go to and select “Log in to e-learning” to enter your Gatorlink username and password. You will not be able to access your course until the start date listed in the course registration materials. Some course content will not be immediately available to you. Instructors may open and close access to lessons according to the schedule posted in the course syllabus. Remember to bookmark the e-learning page for quick access!

Technical Requirements

Access to and on-going use of a computer is required for all students. The University of Florida expects each student entering a distance education program to acquire computer hardware and software appropriate to his or her degree program. Competency in the basic use of a computer is required. Course work will require use of a computer and a broadband connection to the internet, academic advising and registration can be done by computer, official university correspondence is often sent via e-mail and other services are provided that require access through the Internet. Suggested Hardware Recommendation:

  • Intel Core i3 2.2Ghz
  • 4GB of RAM or more
  • 256 Gigabyte Hard Drive or higher
  • DVD-R/RW Drive
  • USB ports (at least 2)
  • WiFi wireless networking on laptops
  • Sound card, and speakers or headphones
  • 1024 by 768 or higher resolution monitor
  • Printer
  • 100mbit or 1Gbit Ethernet Adapter for Broadband
  • A broadband connection to the Internet and related equipment (Generally supplied by the service provider). Cable or DSL highly recommended.

Software Requirements:

  • Office suite (provided by the university)
  • Antivirus (Microsoft Security Essentials recommended)
  • Updated Java and Flash
  • Firefox browser
  • A media player
  • Adobe Connect
  • Live Chat sessions are held using the Adobe Connect tool, accessed from the course page in Canvas. Please use a headset during all Adobe Connect chats. Watch a video tutorial.
  • Voice Thread
  • A cloud-based discussion tool used to record and share project presentations. Click here for a student user guide.

Operating System:

  • Windows 7 (Home basic and starter versions of Windows 7 not recommended)
  • Windows 8/8.1
  • Windows 10
  • Mac OSX

Headset: A combined microphone (typically 3.55 mm plugs or USB) and speaker headset is recommended for personal use and in online settings. Quality, reliable headsets can be purchased at Best Buy or similar retailer for approximately $20-$30. NOTE: We advise against using separate microphones and built-in computer speakers as the sound from computer speakers can be picked up from the microphone and cause feedback and distortions affecting other participants. Email: Once you are a student, all official communication will be sent to your UFL email account. Your GatorLink username makes up the first part of the UFL email address (the part before Your UF email can be set up 2 weeks after you have been admitted to the program.

Canvas: The courses will be delivered using the University of Florida (UF) centrally supported learning management system, Canvas.

  • You will need a GatorLink ID to access this e-learning site
  • You will need access to high-speed internet
  • You will need a desktop or laptop computer (tablets and mobile devices are not fully compatible with these courses). In addition, you will need a headset with a microphone to participate in online discussions.
  • Internet Explorer is not compatible with our courses; please use Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, or Safari. To download Firefox, visit: To download Google Chrome, visit:
  • You will need Microsoft Word and Excel, which you will be able to download for free as a UF student. Also, as a UF student, you will have access to software training from

If you need technical assistance, please contact the UF Computing Help Desk. You will need your Gator Link ID. You can access the UF Help Desk when you log into the e-learning website. You can reach them seven days a week (hours vary and they are closed on holidays).

Student code of conduct

Students can review the code of conduct on the Dean of Students Office website.

Current Student Contact