Southwest Tennessee Community College

For Immediate Release

Date December 03, 2007

For More Information: Robert G. Miller (901) 333-4368/ Fax (901) 333-4503

Innovative Hybrid Courses Debut at Southwest Tennessee Community College

Hybrid courses are a blend of traditional face-to-face instruction with an online learning component which allows the student to have a much more flexible schedule. A portion of the learning activities will take place online, and thus, the time traditionally spent in the classroom is reduced. This allows a student to take two classes and spend the same amount of time in the classroom as the time of one traditional course. These courses are a perfect fit for the working student who is highly motivated with good computer skills, who desires the flexibility of online study but also prefers personal classroom instruction.

When Spring 2008 Semester classes start at Southwest Tennessee Community College on January 14, the curriculum will be greatly enhanced by the debut of several hybrid courses in the Business, Accountancy and Paralegal Studies Department, all offered with evening schedules at the Union Avenue campus. Those hybrid courses will be Introduction to Business, Using the Internet for Business, and Introduction to MIS. These courses are requirements in the Business Administration-University Parallel Associate of Science Degree and Business and Commerce Associate of Applied Science Degree concentrations.

According to Mike Stephens, interim dean of Business, Career Studies and Technologies at Southwest, the hybrid course model is gaining favor throughout higher education for several reasons. “If you are a commuter college like Southwest, you are always looking for ways to attract and retain busy students who value their time and money. Reducing time spent on campus reduces commuting costs. It can also allow students to finish degree plans sooner,” said Stephens. “Student retention is very important to the college. The hybrid format still allows for the face-to-face student-teacher mentor relationship that can result in lower student drop rates than those of the fully on-line course. Reducing class time also results in more classroom availability during peak times which in turn allows for more course offerings.” Stephens further asserts, “we hope our expansion of hybrid course offerings on the Union Avenue Campus will attract more students who work in close proximity to our Union Avenue campus and be of tremendous benefit to them.”

Meanwhile, the Engineering Technologies Department will be offering for the first time this spring two courses on Saturdays at the Union Avenue Campus. Those courses will be offered in the traditional format and are Engineering Technology Techniques and Digital Circuits.

For more information on the available hybrid courses at Southwest, call Elaine Adams, interim dean of Distance Education, at (901) 333-5778.