This fall, Northwest College will use a flexible hybrid model to deliver courses, consisting of both in-person and online learning methods.
Traditionally referred to as “synchronous” and “asynchronous” learning, the hybrid model NWC is implementing will allow for a safe learning experience, whether face-to-face or at a distance.
“Simply put, synchronous learning is ‘real-time’ learning, while asynchronous is more ‘on-your-own’ time,” NWC Dean of Student Learning Greg Thomas said. Synchronous learning involves faculty and students interacting with each other “live,” whether that is in-person or through a distance method like videoconferencing. On the other hand, asynchronous learning makes use of distributed materials and distance education technologies to provide students with a more flexible schedule.
The primary benefit of using a hybrid delivery model for the fall semester is that it allows the college to provide students with the best possible educational experience to promote student success, while ensuring necessary safety precautions are in place.
The final details of how the hybrid model will operate in individual classes will continue to be finalized by individual faculty members over the course of the summer.
While plans are still in development, there are several specifics that have been finalized and communicated to students.
First, students’ pre-registered fall 2020 schedule will not change. Students should plan to participate in classes as scheduled. However, course participation may take place either in-person or via synchronous distance methods (Zoom, telephone conference) based on course content and safety-related conditions and regulations necessary during the fall semester.
Second, courses that meet in-person will have additional health and safety restrictions. Students can expect mandatory social distancing practices and personal protective equipment requirements when in class.
Additionally, all courses will likely have some online components. Whether class attendance is in-person or through synchronous distance methods, there may be online component requirements.
Finally, courses with lab components that require in-person participation will be front-loaded. Students can expect the workload to be compressed during the first part of the semester to protect against potential disruptions that may occur during the semester if COVID-19 risks escalate.
Though the physical NWC campus remains closed, the college is still operating digitally. Those with questions are encouraged to visit https://nwc.edu/directory/ and contact the appropriate individual or department.
For those interested in trying an online class or getting a jumpstart on earning a degree, NWC is offering a free online course this summer, which will begin Monday, June 8. The three-credit class, HMDV 1101 General Studies First Year Seminar, is an essential required course for any NWC degree.
Students can choose to either audit the free course or take it for a grade. To learn more or sign up, contact NWC Enrollment Services at 307-754-6101 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
As details about the fall semester continue to get finalized, Northwest College will continue to keep students updated.
For more information, visit https://nwc.edu/covid-19/.