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Online class programs in the works for FAMU

Staff Writer

Published: Friday, October 2, 2009

Updated: Saturday, October 3, 2009 00:10

online classes

AP

The infrastructure for online courses at Florida A&M is in the process of improvement.
 
Franzetta Fitz, director of the office of instructional technology, said the first and most important step FAMU has taken toward the development of online courses is to ensure a strong and reliable infrastructure.


 Fitz said with the support of the Division of Academic Affairs and the Title III Program, the Office of Instructional Technology is in the process of upgrading its Learning Management System in order to develop an efficient distance-learning program.


"A very important component of this initiative includes a reliable infrastructure," Fitz said. "The Enterprise Information Technology office is working very diligently with OIT in an effort to produce the most robust system to support our online program."


Recently, OIT has expanded its staff by hiring a new instructional designer who will assist faculty with the development of their prospective curriculum online.


"In an effort to produce the very best online programs, faculty members who teach students online will complete a training program in order to ensure that the technology is seamless between them and the collaboration with the students," Fitz said.


 Britney Cook, 20, a third-year criminal justice and pre-law student from Jacksonville said she likes taking classes online and seeing it coming to FAMU would be a great idea.


"I think there should be an option," Cook said. "There should be an online [class] or you can go to the classroom physically and sit down and watch the teacher. You should have the option not just one or the other."


 Last spring, Cook took an online class for a business reporting course.


 "You don't have to attend the class physically," Cook said. "You don't have to be in class at all."


 Cook also said she liked the convenience.  Classes can be planned around your schedule and the time frame for due assignments are lenient.


However, Cook points out the cons of the classes, such as not having one-on-one with your teacher when you have questions or concerns.


"She's not there so you have to email her or call her," Cook said.


Fitz said OIT is working with the deans and faculty in an effort to identify the academic programs that are highly requested by online learners.


 "With the support of our competent leadership team, in conjunction with our hard working students, faculty and staff, I am confident that FAMU will again be the number one producer of African- American baccalaureate degrees," Fitz said.


 On the other hand, Keishana Grant, 19, a second year pre-elementary education student from Tallahassee said she has not taken any online classes because the majority of the courses are offered on campus.


"The only time I would do an online course is if I couldn't get in at school or in a classroom," Grant said. "I'm a really interactive person I don't care to sit in front of a computer."


Unlike Fitz and Cook, Grant does not think having online courses will make FAMU number one again in producing degrees for blacks.


"It really has more to do with the students wanting a degree," Grant said.


Grant said the students make the school and if they do not want to learn or care about their academics, it brings the school down.


"During the time FAMU was number one it was because a lot of students were college ready," she said, "They wanted to get their degree. Now they just come to college and waste time. They're not serious about getting their degree on time."


Nevertheless, Fitz is confident in the work the Public Relations Office is doing to attract students to online work.


"Our recruiting efforts will attract students in a manner of which to ensure them that Florida A&M University is definitely their online connection to excellence with caring," Fitz said.

 

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7 comments Log in to Comment

Anna T
Wed Oct 6 2010 10:36
I agree with adding classes for those interested in the PhD program. Maybe a mixture of online classes and quarterly in person classes.
FAMAlum95
Fri Oct 1 2010 18:02
This is great. I got my B.S. from FAMU in 1995 and my M.B.A. in 2010, from Capella, due to being a fulltime working mom and unable to attend a class on a college campus. This is a great opportuntity for anyone who want to continue their education and get a degree from a great educational institution. I wish my beloved Alma Mater much success!
sheila5
Fri Oct 1 2010 13:27
I am greatful that famu is considering a online program i always wanted a degree from famu i am a working parent who have a daughter who is a senior now at famu. i want to go back to school and have been considering the University of Phoneix due to i have to work and taking classes online would be great. ihave always wanted a degree from a historical black college and famu would be my choice.
CGB
Mon Jan 18 2010 16:46
The option of an online degree program at Florida A&M University would be ingenoius. I also left FAMU without my degree. I have since received an Associates Degree, but still feel that I have unfinished business. I too want my degree to read "FLORIDA A&M UNIVERSITY".
Your name
Mon Dec 21 2009 09:23
It would be wonderful if FAMU offered online classes, especially in the Institute of Public Health. Academically strong schools such as USF offer such options and they are perfect for individuals who want to oursue higher education but still have to work. There must be a way to encourage our administrators to implement the online option on a wider scale.
Your name
Sat Oct 3 2009 14:05
It would be very nice it the on-line courses would also include working towards a PhD.
ES
Sat Oct 3 2009 01:04
This is what i've been waiting for. I'm one of the hundreds of students who came to FAMU and left w/out that piece of paper. sure i could have transferred my credits and enrolled somewhere else, but I want my degree to read "Florida A&M University".
Thank you FAMU for stepping out and coming into the 21st century!!!!

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