An Exemplary University

And that university would be the one that awarded me a doctorate, the University of Utah.  Of course, that is not the reason I regard the University of Utah as being an exemplary university.  My opinion is based on what I read the Spring ’15 edition of Continuum.  It was rated No. 2 by bestcolleges.com in its most recent list of the top 50 colleges nationwide for students ages 25 and older.

One of the likely reasons for this high rating could be found in a later article in the issue titled “Online.”  It is using MOOCA (see previous post) in a hybrid learning approach that includes flipped classrooms and new degrees.  They offer 478 complete online courses and1,051 online course sections.  There are 29,046 students enrolled in these online sections of which 19,573 are  totally unique.

Hybrid courses refer to “flipped classrooms”  where students can  watch short videotaped lectures and review key concepts online  while using class time to engage  in interactive problem-solving  and discussion with the professor.

When I attended college, especially when the courses where early in the morning, I took notes in my illegible handwriting and then tried to decipher  them later in the evening.  I only wish I were attending college now.  Here is a description of one online course.  It included a blog where students could compare notes.  Lectures were taught in sort 10 to 15 minute chunks that could be watched over and over again to grasps concepts. How I envy these students.  I envy not only the students, but also the teachers.  If I had these reviewable film chunks available when I was teaching, I could have critiqued my own segments.  And they would have provided hints as to why students were not getting parts of the material.

More than half of the Utah’s currently enrolled students are taking at least one class online.  This fall Utah will offer five new bachelor’s degrees that can be obtained solely online in business administration, psychology, economics, nursing, and social work.  The new degree programs  will require developing 84 new online courses over the next three years.  The University also expects to offer online master’s degrees in electrical and computer engineering in 2017.

In 2012, nationally 9.9 million college students took at least one course online. 3.3 million students took all classes online.

It is good to note that the University of Utah is at the forefront of this revolution.

© Douglas Griffith and healthymemory.wordpress.com, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Douglas Griffith and healthymemory.wordpress.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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