You probably never thought about it, but every degree program and course that’s offered through the Johnson & Wales University College of Online Education first has to go through rigorous academic review before it’s available to online students.
Who makes that happen?
Anice O’Connor, PhD, is one-half of our A-team. (“A” for “academic,” of course.) Anice joined JWU COE in September 2016 and acts as the Academic Director of Online Programs, Arts & Science.
Her job — to bring programs from the College of Arts & Sciences into the online classroom — requires constant communication between faculty members both online and across JWU’s regional campuses.
She says her job is to ask: “How do we make sure students get the most out of their program? How do we keep them engaged? How do we ensure they’re getting a quality education?”
Because of her extensive background in higher education — Anice taught on ground at the Johnson & Wales Providence Campus for more than 30 years — we asked her what makes learning online through JWU Online unique.
Is Teaching the Online Student Different Than Teaching a Traditional Student?
“Absolutely! The online student is a different breed with unique needs and pressures. I taught Ethics of Business in Spring 2016 before joining JWU Online. That teaching experience was really good for me because [before taking this job] I had a limited working knowledge of what these students are all about.”
How Do You Ensure Online Courses Meet the Needs of Online Students?
“Online course development is so different than in the traditional classroom setting. Professors have to find ways to help make the material come alive online for them. Our wonderful instructional designers and technologists here really help professors examine their goals and vision for online courses. They help us stay focused and are always thinking about how a course or assignment is going to benefit the online student.”
What is the Best Piece of Advice You’d Give to an Online Student?
“I have more than one! If you’ve never been in an online classroom before, be ready for a different experience. There are a lot more responsibilities that come with taking an online course. Ultimately, it’s up to you to determine when you are going to complete your work. If you’re a true online student, work with your advisors. They know what they’re talking about! Finally, to be a successful online student, you have to be able to manage your time well, become self-disciplined, and plan ahead. If you can do those things, you’ll will do well. It’s not just about the course content, it’s also about intangible skills — organization, time-management and self-discipline.”
Do you have questions about taking classes online? For more information on how JWU Online can help you reach your career goals, contact us at 855-JWU-1881 or email [email protected].