WSU is advancing Washington industries …
WSU teams with aviation to develop sustainable aviation biofuels …
WSU partners to develop bioproducts that reduce dependence on petroleum imports …
WSU works with state commodity commissions to conduct needed agricultural research …
WSU developed the technology used for wood-plastic composites used for buildings …
WSU researchers work to improve dairy productivity and reduce disease …
WSU research has made Washington one of the world’s most productive wheat-growing regions …

Cougar Chat, In the News, Land grant mission in action, improving everyday lives

CyberCougs and WSU Global Campus. Land grant mission in action, improving everday lives

cyber coug and logo

Welcome to our fourth in a series of posts that will extend information about WSU’s land grant mission and demonstrate how our university is increasing knowledge, conducting research, and making a difference in our everyday lives. This week, we feature WSU Global Campus and the CyberCougs who are part of our great university. We ask you to “Take Five” minutes and share these stories with your legislators by logging on and logging in as WSU Impact member. We offer a series of tips and suggestions to help you spread the good word, because WSU is doing amazing things here in the state, country, and world. Go Cougs!

Other stories in the series:
WSU. Land grant mission in action, improving everyday lives
WSU Vancouver MAP program
WSU Vancouver Hospitality Business Management Program

Online learning is a topic that can raise eyebrows. Traditionalists worry that online learning will replace the time-honored role of the classroom, disrupt how education is delivered and received, and result in a loss of student/instructor interactions. Others are concerned that it does not provide the same quality of educational experiences and is unable  to rigorously test and evaluate learning outcomes.

These criticisms did not dissuade WSU from creating the WSU Global Campus, which is one of the top online learning programs in the country. WSU first started offering distance degree programs in 1992. By 1998, WSU had courses available online and in July 2012, WSU Global Campus was officially launched. The campus delivers an array of educational, research and training opportunities to a global audience. Through a new pathway for teaching and learning,  including interactive lessons, videos, discussion boards, and online chats, the Global Campus dramatically increases opportunities to receive a WSU degree.  Always ready to innovate, the online campus mitigates time and space barriers to reach out to students — and to the public — in unprecedented ways to offer them the best of WSU, no matter where they live.

This pioneering spirit is an evolving iteration of the extension tradition: translating the values of WSU into an online format. As WSU President Elson S. Floyd said about the WSU Global Campus: “(t)his is the 21st century realization of WSU’s land-grant mission to bring education beyond campus boundaries. ”

The campus is located wherever there’s an Internet connection. The many benefits include expanded educational access in areas of the state hardest hit by the recent economic downturn. Additionally, WSU education, training, and extension resources can be key factors in economic development, particularly in areas remote from four-year universities. Arguably, the Global Campus also enhances cross-cultural and cross discipline collaboration.

cyber cougs bubblesWSU Global Campus – providing a world of experiences
The online degree program works with WSU faculty to offer eight undergraduate degrees, nine master’s degrees, and nine certificate programs. WSU Online offers registration services, student support, tech support, academic advising, eTutoring and career counseling. The campus accommodates a diverse student body of approximately 3100. Goals for expansion and continuing improvement include:

  • Staggered accelerated sessions to provide more options for busy students and decrease time to degree completion
  • New online proctoring services for exams
  • Several new degrees, including a master’s degree in sport management and a B.S. in psychology

The campus also sponsors the Digital Academy, which offers a variety of noncredit online learning opportunities. It partners with WSU faculty and other experts to create university-quality educational materials, such as certificate courses for working professionals and a wide variety of free interactive seminars for students.  Whether  seeking knowledge for personal enrichment, skill building, or career advancement, WSU’s Digital Academy makes learning a life-long experience.

Like other WSU campuses, the Global Campus includes more than academic programs. It provides new ways of bringing the university experience to WSU Global Campus students. Global Connections, creates a virtual learning environment that gives WSU Online students access to fun, stimulating and engaging extra-curricular experiences, including:

  • Web Learning Events: Free live events where students can see, hear, and talk to WSU experts. These events cover a wide range of topics, from career planning and cutting-edge research, to organic gardening and being an effective Master Gardener.
  • Access to traditional campus activities, guest lecturers, and such events as the Common Reading program, Global Case Competition, and Academic Showcase.
  • eVents: Arts and cultural events, such as art exhibits, musical performances, and visiting speakers.
  • eCareer Fair: An online career fair where students can chat with employers and find job opportunities.
  • The Plug Inn: A place for WSU Online students to share tips and find answers about using CougSync.

The campus is committed to caring for its students and provides a number services for teaching and learning success. To that end, eLearning Services provides best practices for technology-mediated instruction, services that improve the educational experience for students and faculty, and a welcoming environment where faculty can explore new tools and methodologies. Finally, the campus includes a conference management unit, which organizes 40-50 educational conferences a year, bringing experts together both virtually and face-to-face.

In a Nutshell
Objective data continue to demonstrate that a college education pays dividends including increased employment opportunities, career options, income potential, benefits such as health care and retirement savings, connections to improve economic resiliency, quality of life, and security for the future.

cyber cougsAccess to higher education has never been more important. Graduates of the WSU Global Campus are taught by WSU professors in courses designed by WSU’s academic units while accessing the resources available to any student on any of the four other campuses. For many students, online education is the only way they will be able to go to college. Non-traditional students —  those with families and jobs, and those who started but never finished degrees, or those seeking new job skills or seeking advanced degrees — are now able to matriculate through WSU Global Campus.

For the state of Washington, the benefits of having a highly rated online university campus creates new opportunities for every Washingtonian. WSU’s land grant mission continues to evolve and to advance knowledge through research and education, but its dissemination is now substantially enhanced with the power of technology. The campus reaches out to improve communities and create educational opportunities that have  direct relevance to the daily lives of people here at home and around the world.

Go CyberCougs and welcome to WSU.



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