Bellevue College is launching a new “eLearning for Educators” professional development program for K-12 and college teachers who wish to bring the benefits of online learning to their students.
“eLearning” is a broad term that includes all forms of teaching and learning that are supported or enhanced by digital technology.
The new program at the college teaches educators how to integrate new instructional technology into their courses, whether they teach in a traditional “in-class” venue, a fully online setting or in a hybrid format that blends the two approaches.
“Our eLearning program is ideal for experienced educators who already have great teaching skills but want to find out how they can further student learning by teaching partly or fully online,” said Norma Whitacre, who directs the program. “It’s equally useful for new teachers who need to be as competitive as possible in the job market.”
The program comprises three, 3-credit core courses, each self-contained with no prerequisites, so that participants can enroll only in those that match their specific interests and skill level.
The courses will be taught in a blended format: primarily as an online learning community, but also involving a limited number of evening, in-class sessions.
This fall the program will offer “Introduction to eLearning,” for those new to the field. It covers the broad range of concepts, techniques, tools and trends in online instruction, and how they support achievement of a variety of learning objectives.
The class will begin with an in-person session from 6-8:50 p.m. on Tuesday, September 21, on Bellevue College’s main campus. The second and final in-class session will meet at the same times on Tuesday, November 30.
The fee for the course is $349.
The winter-quarter class, “Essentials of eLearning,” will cover the use of online tools to promote student engagement, collaboration and retention.
The spring-quarter offering, “eLearning Assessment,” will integrate current learning assessment theory and practice with the selection and application of multiple web-based assessment technologies.
Designers of the eLearning for Educators program also plan to create a fourth class, an elective in which participants would create a full online course.
“Online learning provides benefits beyond the flexibility to “attend class” on one’s own schedule,” Whitacre said. “Some students find it easier to express their ideas online than in a traditional classroom. It also helps us, as educators, to reach students in new and often more effective ways.”
Evidence of the growing popularity of online learning among students is clear in the rapid expansion of Bellevue College’s distance education program, which has grown 32 percent over the past two years and now serves an average of 6,500 students each quarter, or about one in every three students taking courses for credit.
The largest and most varied in the state of Washington, Bellevue College’s online curriculum currently offers 400 separate courses, including several complete degree and certificate programs.
For further information and to enroll in the eLearning for Educators program, contact Norma Whitacre at firstname.lastname@example.org or 425-564-4019.