Nearly every student is familiar with the online classes offered by UC. Online courses provide many benefits for both students and professors. For some of these professors, the greatest benefit is being able to teach from anywhere they would like, even if it is on the other side of the country.
Dr. Barry Smith tells what it is like to teach at UC, while living outside the state of Ohio. He is teaching two courses in business analytics this semester all the way from Casper, Wyoming. Dr. Smith holds a PhD in analytical chemistry and has taught courses ranging from math to chemistry to statistics to business courses, at both the graduate and undergraduate levels.
Dr. Smith first became interested in online teaching in 2008, and in 2009 began teaching in both the classroom and online. Though he explains that teaching online can be more work than teaching in a classroom, there are still many benefits in doing so. One of the best things about teaching online, he states, is the flexibility of the schedule and the time it allows him to spend with his two sons, Konrad and Oskar.
Likewise, Professor Lisa Hendrix is an online teacher for UC. Though she grew up in Franklin, Ohio, Ms. Hendrix currently lives in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina, teaching Business Analytics I and II as well as College Algebra. She has worked with Texas Instruments as a statistician; she has also held positions at Tennessee Eastman (a branch of Kodak) and RJ Reynolds Tobacco Company. Her teaching career began in 2003, and she has been an educator ever since.
Ms. Hendrix has been teaching online for nearly ten years, and feels like the greatest benefit to teaching online is the flexibility it gives to students. Ms. Hendrix tells The Lantern, “I started [teaching online]by developing virtual or online classes for Surry CC, and then was given the opportunity to teach the classes I developed.” She states that she enjoys teaching in the classroom just as much as teaching online, but online classes give her much more flexibility in her schedule.
Both professors say that online classes provide enormous benefits to students, allowing a versatile schedule and the ability to learn in any environment. To any professors interested in online teaching, Dr. Barry Smith explains, “It is a lot more work to do online teaching if you do it right compared to the classroom setting. Be sure that this is what you want to do or need to do due to flexibility or convenience reasons.” To students, Professor Lisa Hendrix advises looking into online classes if they have a family, have to work, or prefer to learn at their own pace. All in all, virtual classes can be useful for anyone, and give students the chance to learn wherever they are. By taking a class online, you may even end up with a teacher who is hundreds of miles away.
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