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Class technology gives students options
Posted Dec. 4, 2006

Imagine spending your tuition on a class that allows you to stay at home. Today, many students are given the option of taking a class online instead of sitting in class for three hours. The main reason for this change is to give students more options.

During an online course, assignments are posted and discussion boards are used to discuss issues about class topics.

“I would take another class because I work during the week and this was easier for my schedule,” said Katy Nash, a senior speech communications major at the University of La Verne.

Some classes, called hybrids, are taught half online and half in the traditional classroom. Some students say they find it difficult to learn certain skills and information  this way.

“I don’t like my hybrid class because we barely discuss the topics that are online,” said Anna Morris, junior liberal studies major. “I would take another class if it wasn’t for my major because it seems like a waste of time.”

ULV began using the Internet for teaching roughly 10 years ago. Al Clark, the University’s Associate Vice President of Academic Affairs, headed up the program, then known as the Travel Learning Courses.

Over the years as the Internet and the faculty’s understanding of it has expanded, so have the University’s online course options. It gives students the ability to do coursework on their own time.

“It keeps me honest and more organized in my work,” said Suzanne Beaumaster, associate professor of public administration.

For quiet students, online teaching is a great tool to allow them to open up with out feeling the pressure from surrounding students.

Online courses are mainly used for graduate programs so that adults have the ability to obtain a degree while working full time, out of the state or even out of the country.

Allison Farole can be reached at allison.farole@yahoo.com.