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Archive for July, 2009

President Calls to Modernize Community Colleges

July 13, 2009 Leave a comment

We believe it’s time to reform our community colleges so that they provide Americans of all ages a chance to learn the skills and knowledge necessary to compete for the jobs of the future. Our community colleges can serve as 21st-century job training centers, working with local businesses to help workers learn the skills they need to fill the jobs of the future. We can reallocate funding to help them modernize their facilities, increase the quality of online courses and ultimately meet the goal of graduating 5 million more Americans from community colleges by 2020. Barack Obama, “Rebuilding Something Better

President Obama had an article, “Rebuilding Something Better,” published¬† in the Washington Post on Sunday, July 12, 2009. The above quote is, to me, the crux of his editorial.¬† Two year colleges are what our colleagues in the business world call “price performers.”¬† The term “bang for the buck” is also relevant.

County and two year colleges offer a tremendously affordable tuition rate to their local residents. Why? The tuition is subsidized by the state, the federal government, and the local community or county. Two years at a community college can cost a few thousand dollars. Considering those same two years — to earn the same credits — can cost $80,000 at a private four year school, it’s no surprise students are turning to the county colleges out of both necessity and choice.

In an economy where jobs requiring at least an associate’s degree are projected to grow twice as fast as jobs requiring no college experience, it’s never been more essential to continue education and training after high school. Barack Obama, “Rebuilding Something Better

We are eager to see the details of how the President will help the community colleges with reallocated funding to help not only our citizens, but our country, better prepare for the future.

Best Practices — Creating an Inviting, Warm Learning Environment

July 1, 2009 Leave a comment

In the past ten years or so, I’ve mentored over 50 instructors for Abromitis Online Learning. Some of these teachers, especially in the earlier years, had never taught online. I have shared many “tips” with our instructors, but one that I feel is critical is to create a warm, inviting “climate” in the online class.

In my online readings, I came across this article that hits upon many of the points I have made with our teachers.

Particularly in classes with adult students, it’s absolutely necessary to create an environment that is comfortable, warm, welcoming. Many adult learners have never taken an online class. It can be intimidating and sterile–all in all, a very foreign experience. The class instructor needs to be take extra steps in the first days of class to set the tone and create a comfortable place for all.

I have seen the difference creating a warm learning environment makes in student attitude and success. It is more than worth the efforts of the instructors.