Courses in College

Be inspired by the gamut of community college courses, from the arts to technical training. This section will cover everything from remedial classes to continuing education. Community colleges offer courses for youth and teens, individuals looking for a new hobby or skill, or those behind bars looking for a second chance.
View the most popular articles in Courses in College:
A Degree Program sans Textbooks? One Community College Says Yes
We report on a first-of-its-kind degree program introduced by Tidewater Community College that is 100 percent textbook-free. We also explore ways to save on textbook costs – for students that don’t live near the Tidewater campus.
College is a pricy endeavor today, but at least one community college is looking for a way to help students cut the cost of a college education. Tidewater Community College in Virginia has announced plans to debut a textbook-free degree program next year. College officials estimate the pilot program could cut the cost of the degree by as much as a third by the time graduation rolls around.
 
Learning Business without Textbooks
 
The Richmond-Times Dispatch reports that Tidewater Community College will be offering an associate of science degree in business administration this fall that will require no textbook purchases throughout the program. Instead, students will use open-source educational materials, known as OER, which they will be able to access through the school’s learning management system on smart phones or tablets. The college will be the first to offer a complete degree program without any textbooks required.
 
The program was developed as a partnership between Tidewater Community College and Lumen Learning; an Oregon-based company that helps schools across the country incorporate OERs into their learning plans. The founder of Lumen, David Wiley, has advocated for open-education for the past 15 years, according to The Chronicle of Higher Education. However, no school has been open to the concept of a completely textbook-free degree program until now.
 
“It’s frustrating to watch these resources keep getting created, and then watch nobody use them and the students get no benefit,” Wiley stated at The Chronicle of Higher Education.
 
The Textbook Zero Model
 
The company developed the first . . . read more

10 High-Demand Two-Year Degrees You Can Earn Online
We look at some of the hottest two-year degree programs today that can be earned right from the comfort of home.
Online education has been increasing in popularity for adult students over the past decade. Yahoo Education reports that in 2010, 27 percent of adults a degree-granting institutions were seeking their degrees online and that number is predicted to go as high as 39 percent by 2015. Today, adult students can find a wealth of options for in-demand degrees that they can earn almost exclusively from the comfort of home. Check out these online degrees you can earn in just two years or less.

Business Administration
Business degrees are relatively easy to earn online and offer a variety of options in today’s workforce. Online education is an appropriate replica of the current business world, since much of today’s administrative work is handled via the Internet. For those interested in a professional career in this field, business administration offers a solid foundation that opens the door to a variety of business occupations. With studies in accounting, human resources and management, you can hone your professional skills for the 21st century workforce without ever straying far from your home computer.
 
Paralegal Studies
The paralegal field is one of the fastest growing occupations today, according to Yahoo Education. The website cites numbers from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics that predict this field to grow by 24 percent between 2008 and 2018. Paralegal professionals work alongside attorneys in their practices, conducting research, writing briefs and educating clients about their cases. The average annual salary for paralegals today ranges from around $46,000 to $70,000   Nursing Most . . . read more

Online Courses Popularity Growing at Community Colleges
We look at the increase in online course offerings at community colleges across the country, and why this option is becoming more popular with some students.
Community colleges strive to operate as institutions of higher education that meet the needs of many today. Convenience and flexibility are the mantra of these schools that host adult students with a wide range of family and professional responsibilities. To achieve those goals, many community colleges across the country are increasing their selection of online and hybrid courses, allowing many busy students to get in at least a portion of their study time from the comfort of home. As the demand for online coursework continues to grow, community colleges grapple with how to provide ultimate flexibility to students without sacrificing instructional quality or completion rates to give students the education options they are asking for.
 
The Growth of Online Options
 
Online courses have been increasing at community colleges nationwide since 2005, according to a recent report at Santa Ynez Valley News. The publication cites a report, titled, “Going the Distance: Online Education in the United States, 2011,” which showed that 32 percent more students took an online course during fall 2011 term. That means more than 6.7 million community college students took advantage of online opportunities during that semester alone.
 
The number marks a significant increase in online courses from the same semester in 2008, when just 4.6 million students at community colleges took an online course. The 2008 numbers were a 17-percent increase from 2007, suggesting an uptick in the demand for online courses overall. In fact, the Marin Independent Journal states that online courses have increased . . . read more

Remedial Math Gets a New Look at Community Colleges Nationwide
We examine how many community colleges are tackling the issue of remedial math to get students the help they need without compromising completion rates, as many remedial courses tend to do.
As community colleges across the United States strive to improve dismal completion rates, one factor stands out as a stark obstacle for degree-seeking students – remedial math. Many students find they need remedial math classes after taking placement tests for community college. However, semesters of remedial math prove to be costly and time-consuming for those students. Sadly, many community college careers both start and end with remedial math. Fortunately, schools across the country are devising new systems to give students the math instruction they need without jeopardizing their ability to earn the degree they want.

New Math Pathways Match Instruction to Needs
 
In California, community colleges are trying a whole new approach to remedial math classes. Instead of requiring students to take courses in subjects they may never need or use, math classes are customized to a student’s specific major and area of interest. For example, aspiring engineers may need remedial algebra if they are to properly prepare for the math required in their degree program. However, English or history majors might be just as well suited to a class in statistics that teaches basic math concepts quickly and effectively.
 
According to a report in the Sacramento Bee, at least 16 community colleges across the state have adopted this approach to remedial math – so far with great success. The publication reports that students in the new pathways program are completing math classes at a rate two to four times higher than traditional curriculum. Similar models are . . . read more

Classes Behind Bars: Community College Takes Courses to Local Inmates
We’ll look at a new program offered by Jackson Community College, as well as other programs around the country, that allow prison inmates to take community college courses to prepare for life after incarceration.
Community college has offered opportunities to many students throughout their history. In recent years, those opportunities have been extended to incarcerated populations, offering inmates the skills and training they need to find productive lives after prison. By bringing education to those who are currently in the prison system, the hope is that once they leave the system, they will never return. Does higher education in prison work as intended? Read on about the efforts by some colleges to transform incarcerated individuals for the better.

New College Program in Mississippi Aimed at Correctional Facility
 
A handful of inmates at the G. Robert Cotton Correctional Facility in Jackson, Michigan are getting a new lease on life. Fifteen of the prisoners at this institution are enrolled in a pilot program featuring college courses from Jackson Community College. The inmates are enrolled in four rounds of courses from the school, according to a report at mLive. Classes include a computer course, which is available through a grant from the U.S. Department of Commerce.
 
The rest of the classes are paid for by the inmates themselves. Some are using money they saved prior to incarceration, while others are relying on friends and family to foot the bill until they are released and able to begin earning their own living. Most prisoners are ineligible for financial aid from the government, and even those that have some eligibility have little chance of receiving financial assistance from Uncle Sam while they are still incarcerated.
 
Course options include . . . read more
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Courses in College

Remedial Education

60% of community college students need remedial courses. This section covers the classes and new developments to help students who need remedial coursework. Learn why the gap exists, how schools are combatting it and what you can do to avoid remedial classes. Get tips on mastering college math, learn what you can do to prevent repeating a class and hear what the experts have to say about remedial class placement.

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Kids and Teens

Community college is not just for adults. Learn about all the programs available to children and teens too. From aiding high school dropouts to ramped up summer school programs, community colleges work hard to encourage the pursuit of higher education to students of all ages.

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    Graduate from Community College Before High School
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Online Courses

Online classes give you the flexibility to learn off-campus, often at times most convenient for your schedule. Identify 10 degrees you can earn online, weigh the pros and cons of online education and find out how you can take online classes for free.

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    California Virtual Community College System Increases Choices, Transfers
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    Community Colleges Taking a Serious Look at MOOCs
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Class Schedules

Setting your class schedule with community colleges gives you flexibility and many options.

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    5 Alternative Methods for Earning Community College Credits
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Support for Businesses

Local business are taking advantage of special training programs at community colleges. From OSHA training to a collaboration with Goldman Sachs, community colleges are training employees for small and large businesses across the country.

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    OSHA Training at Community College: Making Workplace Safety Easier
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    Goldman Sachs and Community Colleges: Teaming Up for Small Business Assistance

Fun & Elective Classes

Community colleges offer a gamut of fun and interesting classes, and we give ideas that may strike inspiration for your elective choices. Learn homesteading skills, study paranormal investigating, or earn a scuba diving certificate all at a community college near you. This sections identifies some of the fun non-credit courses available at your local campus.

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Continuing Education

Community colleges are filled with continuing education opportunities. Whether you are looking for a resume booster, new skills to earn a promotion or want to earn your degree while incarcerated, community college may be a good choice for you.

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