Will online classes boom at HCC soon?

As the high school class of 2014 progresses our campuses may be less crowded. Although an AA cannot be obtained entirely online at HCC many other campuses around the world do offer this option. HCC says they will be following the trend; an AA degree will be possible for online and distant learning students in the near future.   A high demand for virtual professors may soon rise in hopes to offer all courses needed for an AA.

An interview with two seniors at Tampa Bay Tech revealed why online courses are generating more students. Both of the girls have been working online with a website called FLVS.net majority of their high school career.   FLVS was established as an independent fully accredited education entity in 2000. With 1800 staff members and 120 courses, including AP and honor classes, available public school students at all ages (K-12) are encouraged to get ahead or get course recovery online. FLVS is free to Florida residents but is not exclusive to residents. Brandi Dixon and Leslie Grant say many of their friends are already taking college courses online through dual enrollment for juniors and seniors at FLVS.flvs

“The transition will be easy for me.” Brandi explains. “I’ve been taking online courses since freshman year. Taking online courses at HCC just make sense to continue what I know.”

When asked why they chose online classes instead n night school or summer school the both had the same reply: convenience. Brandi Dixon works for the city of Temple Terrace Public Library in the evenings after school. FLVS is the most manageable for her schedule.

“Online classes allow me to work at my own speed within my own hours (which happen to be late at night after work).” Brandi shares. “I like not having the pressure of all of my peers watching me. Although I do have interaction with them if I miss a question or I do not understand a concept my teacher doesn’t call me out in front of my class. They explain why you were wrong in lament terms as shorts as possible through email, instant message, phone calls, and text messages.

Both girls can agree with Leslie as she said “You have to very self- driven and motivated to do study online. You can be your biggest obstacle if you procrastinate. The only down fall is that many people have distractions in their study space since they’re not in a classroom.”

The seniors were asked if they felt they would miss out in the “college experience” if they take courses online instead of on campus. Their answers were surprisingly mature for 17 year olds.

“I don’t really care about joining a sorority or anything like that. If I want to join a club many are offered in online chat rooms. I am planning to transfer from HCC to USF and, if at that point I feel deprived, I may take courses on campus. In the end the only thing I am interested in is getting my degree and starting my career.”- Brandi Dixon

“I will be transferring next year to New York with a scholarship. I want to be a criminal biologist. I am taking classes on campus my freshman year. I want to make friends but because the cost of living is so high I might have to work more than expected. If so I wouldn’t think twice before registering for online courses.”- Leslie Grant

Because FLVS has made it so convenient will online course continue to flourish? Will our campuses turn into a ghost town? HCC offered 401 distant learning online classes in spring of 2013 and 319 during the summer of 2013. Some members of the graduating class of 2014 say the numbers should double upon their arrival.

Online classes are accessed through MYHCC tab of the HCC homepage. All class information and contact is done through blackboard. Assignments and grades are also accessed through blackboard. Registration for these classes is the same as other classes found on Web Advisor. These programs are familiar and easy to most students. The distant learning online support desk can be reached at 813 259 6530.


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