Online Courses

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Online Courses


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4 Recent Alumnus

Online Courses: Online courses allow me to better pick my own schedule. If I'm swamped in another class, I can do my online class any time later during the week instead of worrying of what I might miss on a certain day. The more lenient schedule also allows me to have more free time, as I can decide to finish my classes early in the morning or as late at night as I want.

4 College Freshman

Online Courses: The online courses are very nice when you are busy with other things in life such as a job. They are easy to understand and keep up with assignments. I had very good experiences with my online courses and will be taking more in the future.

4 College Junior

Online Courses: Online classes work the best for me because I work full time. This will be the best way for me to get my degree.

3 College Sophomore

Online Courses: Personally I don't prefer online courses, but they help when you have no time to get to class or if a class is unavailable at a good time in your schedule. They are different from traditional classes. They work better for your schedule but they may vary in difficulty depending on what the professor requires from you. Most of my online classes were hybrid, meaning half in class and half online. There is a lot more technology features, so much of the homework and the tests are online. There might be more videos to watch or slides to look at versus classwork or written notes on a board. It is harder to understand when a teacher does not explain it, so online classes are best for those who can quickly figure out things on their own. The only peer-peer interaction is blackboard, and I didn't spend much time reading. I did my work and was done. There is little to no interaction between the professor and student, usually, and the workload is fine if you stay on top of things.

3 Recent Alumnus

Online Courses: Personally, I prefer attending classes in person. I have always struggle to learn with online classes so my experience may be a bit biased. However, from the online courses I have taken I can say it has been a good experience. I have been able to manage to get the hang of the classes and actually learn.


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Student Author OverviewWhat's this?

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Online courses provide a lot of flexibility and freedom to students; however, they call for more responsibility from students. Since most online courses are asynchronous, meaning that the students don't have to be at a computer at a specific time, students can participate in the course without simultaneous interaction. All they have to do is log in weekly to post responses and turn in assignments in order to contribute to the course. The schedule is determined by the student. Online courses require basic computer skills such as surfing the Internet, copying and pasting from a window to another window, creating folders and organizing files, and bookmarking, just to name a few. 

Degrees such as business administration, education, criminal justice, and general studies can be completed totally online at Arizona Western College. Many other courses that don't require labs are also available online. Blackboard is the software used for online classes; it has discussion boards that allow interaction between students and between students and the instructor, as well. There are weekly assignments, and usually every other week, there are tests or quizzes. Many midterms and finals are proctored, but a lot are not.

Facts & Statistics

Required Tech Skills
Prior to taking an online class, students should be able to proficiently navigate through the Internet, use search engines, and perform assorted email and word processing tasks. Students should also know how to use a word processing program like Microsoft Word, how to copy and paste from one screen to another, how to "bookmark" (add "Favorites"), and generally be familiar with organizing email, bookmarks, and word documents into files and folders. In addition, it's good to be familiar with using threaded discussion boards and/or chat rooms.
Typical Online Lecture - Single Day
A typical online course has about 20 students in the class. The professor will post assignments through Blackboard, and then typically the students will have to post on a discussion board.
Typical Online Course - Start to Finish
One the first week, students are given the course syllabus, which provides a guideline for the whole semester, along with the instructor's contact information and office hours. There are weekly assignments and usually, every other week, tests or quizzes. Many midterms and finals are proctored, but some aren't.
Online Testing & Grading
The content of online courses is just like face-to-face courses: weekly assignments, papers due at set dates, quizzes and exams, and participation. The grading and testing process depends on the instructor. The following is an example of grading method: participation counts for 10 percent, quizzes 20 percent, exams 40 percent, and midterms and final exams 30 percent.

Student Polls

Rate your school's online courses on the following topics    Based on 132 responses

Very poor
  • Appropriate class sizes
  • Course availability
  • Section/class availability
  • Convenience
  • Course management system (submitting assignments, viewing grades, etc.)
  • Discussion/interaction with other students
  • Manageability of workload
  • Tutoring assistance
  • Tech support
  • User-friendly technology

Which statement(s) best describes the quality of your online courses?    Based on 132 responses

  • 25% Learned a lot of new things
  • 24% Applicable to the real world
  • 23% Will advance my career
  • 18% Learned a few new things
  • 4% Will help me switch careers
  • 3% Waste of time
  • 2% Haven't learned anything I didn't already know

Rate your school's online course professors on the following topics    Based on 133 responses

Very poor
  • Accessibility
  • Communication skills
  • General knowledge
  • Interaction with students
  • Interest in class subjects
  • Interest in students
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