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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Freshmen to face online requisites

    The English department’s writing program is developing two online courses that will soon be required for all incoming freshman.

    This will mark the first time the UA has required students to take an online course as part of their general education courses.

    A one-credit writing skills course and a one-credit research course will soon be required for students to take in conjunction with English 101 and 102, Anne-Marie Hall, director of the writing program, said.

    The writing skills course is being piloted this semester with six instructors. If approved by the provost, the course will be set as part of the curriculum for the fall of 2009. The research course is in the developmental stage and will be piloted in the fall.

    “”I think this is the way of the future,”” Hall said. “”We would like to do a lot of things online.””

    She said the goal is to add these courses to the curriculum for all incoming freshmen.

    Hall said several task forces are working out various kinks, such as how to rearrange general education courses in order to fit the extra two credits into the 120 credit graduation plan.

    “”It is potentially good news since researchers are suggesting that students are more motivated with online … hybrid kinds of material,”” Hall said. “”The bad news is that students have to take another credit and they may or may not respond well to that.””

    Melissa Seifert, a retail and consumer sciences sophomore, said she prefers in-class instruction to online courses, but she thinks it will be received differently by every student.

    “”I’m a better learner in a human-interaction sort of setting,”” Seifert said. “”Some people like that extra thing … there are a lot of people who will not receive it as well and will probably see it as a chore.””

    Political science junior Nick Finch said he had mixed feelings about the new courses. While he said he wouldn’t like to be a part of the new program he thinks it could be useful for some students.

    “”I don’t know how one credit is going to help their writing skills,”” Finch said. “”I think that whether we like it or not, it is going to be incorporated more every year.””

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