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CCCC Distance Ed offers 8-week, full credit curriculum classes

CCCC Distance Ed offers 8-week, full credit curriculum classes

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Distance Education courses through Central Carolina Community College are helping student Laura Bi ... (more)

CCCC Distance Ed offers 8-week, full credit curriculum classes

click to enlarge ⊗

Central Carolina Community College Distance Education director Bianka Stumpf is excited about the ... (more)

CCCC Distance Ed offers 8-week, full credit curriculum classes

click to enlarge ⊗

Central Carolina Community College is now offering some eight-week curriculum class sessions onlin ... (more)

09.14.2011Continuing EducationCurriculum Programs

SANFORD - There's nothing distant about distance education through Central Carolina Community College.

It is as close as the Internet on a laptop or home computer. Distance education brings many of the college's curriculum and continuing education classes to students at times convenient for them and located wherever they choose to connect: at home, on campus, in the library, or elsewhere.

Curriculum classes online

Now, CCCC has taken its online curriculum learning to a new level with the addition of 12 and eight-week sessions for some curriculum classes.

"These classes increase opportunities for students and provide additional flexible scheduling," said Lisa Chapman, CCCC vice president of Academic Affairs. "They help students fulfill requirements in all programs, a great advantage in helping them earn credit toward a variety of credentials."

The fall sessions enable students to pick up additional curriculum class credits before the end of the first semester. Registration for the 12-week classes is closed, but registration for the eight-week session is now underway and continues through Oct. 11. The eight-week session begins Oct. 14 and run through Dec. 16. Financial aid is available. For more information, call Student Services at (919) 718-7300.

Classes offered during the eight-week session are: ACC 120: Principles of Financial Accounting, BUS 115: Business Law I, CIS 110: Introduction to Computers, GEL 111: Introductory Geology, HUM 110: Technology and Society, MAT 161: College Algebra, MUS 110: Music Appreciation, PED 110: Fit and Well for Life, PSY 150: General Psychology, and SOC 210: Introduction to Sociology.

"These are the same courses, with the same semester credit, at the same cost as the 16-week courses," said Ken Hoyle, CCCC vice president of Student Services. "They are just offered in a time-compressed format."

Distance Education is ideal for the busy student, parent, worker or anyone who likes or needs to get their classes at times and places that are convenient for them, said CCCC President Bud Marchant.

"Central Carolina Community College is committed to promoting the success of every student," he said. "Distance Education is an important way we reach out beyond the limitations of our physical campuses and centers to people who can benefit from our programs. Adding these shorter sessions increases our ability to serve."

CCCC provided curriculum classes via distance education first in 1997, with four courses on videocassettes. The videocassettes are no more; courses have moved to the Internet, either completely online or as hybrids, with both online and seated classes.

Growth has been exponential. In spring 2011, unduplicated Distance Education curriculum enrollment was 2,508, with 2,145 taking online classes and 677, hybrid. The duplicated count of 5,328 indicates that many were enrolled in more than one class: 4,294 online and 1,034 hybrid.

The college's Distance Education web site, www.cccc.edu/distanceeducation, is designed to be user-friendly, according to Bianka Stumpf, the college's Distance Education director. It even includes a quiz that students considering distance education can take to determine if this type of learning environment works for them. The "Cougar's Den" provides tutorials for navigating the instructional tools for distance education.

Most of the instructors for the college's Distance Education curriculum classes are full-time faculty. They incorporate the use of blogs, streaming media, wikis, and Skype to maximize student-instructor interaction, no matter where in the world the student is.

For most distance education classes, the student never has to set foot on campus. This means that the college reaches students far beyond the limits of its geographic service area: Chatham, Harnett and Lee Counties. Students who are called to active military duty find that online classes enable them to work on their education while deployed. The college has several students in Afghanistan and Iraq. Other students' locations range from Canada to Honduras, from Germany to Benin.

Many students located closer to a campus choose to take hybrid courses. Student Laura Bibey, who is earning an A.A.S. in Medical Office Administration, has one seated class at the Sanford campus and three hybrid courses.

"I work full-time at a second-shift job and take care of grandchildren sometimes, so the hybrid courses help," Bibey said. "I only have to be at the college once a week for them. I'd recommend taking classes like this to anyone with a busy schedule - it's the best way to go."

CCCC offers several degree, diploma and certificate programs by distance education, including the Associate of Arts-University Transfer and Associate of Science-University Transfer; Associate of Applied Science and diplomas in Accounting and Business Administration; and the A.A.S. and Certificate in Human Resources Management. The Library & Information Technology A.A.S. and certificate are offered only through distance education.

A full list of courses is available at the Web site. All curriculum courses offered are fully accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. The credits will transfer to most colleges and universities.

Students may also continue their education through online universities, such as Franklin University and The University of North Carolina Online. CCCC is a member of the North Carolina Community College System Virtual Learning Community (http://vlc.nccommunitycolleges.edu), eLearningNC (www.elearningnc.gov), and the Southern Regional Education Board's Electronic Campus (www.electroniccampus.org).

"We are already planning for 12- and eight-week sessions during the spring semester," said Bianka Stumpf, the college's director of Distance Education. "We expect them to be popular with students who need or want to earn their credits within a shorter time span."

Continuing education online

In addition to the curriculum online offerings, departments within the college's Economic and Community Development Division offer a wide variety of classes via the Internet.

The Continuing Education Department partners with Education To Go, a leading provider of online learning for adults, to make classes available, from art to WindowsXP. The classes earn Continuing Education Units (CEUs), which do not transfer to colleges or universities. For more information, visit www.ed2go.com/cccc.

Continuing Education also offers health occupations classes online that earn job-ready certificates, such as Medical Coding and Billing, Medical Terminology and Home Health and Hospice Aide. Human Resources Development offers online courses to prepare people to enter the workforce or upgrade employment skills.

College and Career Readiness provides the opportunity to earn Adult High School/GED diplomas through online studies and Emergency Services is offering a limited number of emergency medical services classes online.

For more information and step-by-step instructions for enrolling in Distance Education curriculum classes at CCCC, visit www.cccc.edu/distance education.

For more information about online continuing education classes, go to www.cccc.edu/ecd/departments/distanceeducation/ or contact one of the college's Continuing Education offices: (919) 545-8044 or (919) 742-2715 in Chatham County, (910) 814-1123 in Harnett County, or (919) 777-7701 in Lee County.