New web interface could become the future of online instruction

“The number of programs being offered online has doubled in the last two years alone,” Apple said. “So clearly, it’s becoming a more popular choice for more Americans.”

Abby Shore, 26, a business administration major at Harrison College who takes the majority of her classes online, said the new web interface seems to be a good idea.

“Right now, I love the flexibility [of the current website],” she said.

With a job, husband, and two kids, it’s hard to work around her schedule. The downside to online courses, though, is the lack of interaction with fellow students, especially because she’s only on campus once a week.

She said eMail is currently the main form of communication online, along with the occasional discussion board.

Because she and so many other students often use Facebook, she said the integration of social websites into Harrison’s new interface is “really cool.”

“It’s not that I don’t want the social aspect [of learning],” she said. “I just don’t have the time to be away from my family.”

An analytic learning management system, Brunner said, is one of the tools that makes KnowU what it is.

It will make recommendations to students based on what’s known about them, such as how many credits they have, their major, the groups they’re in, how well they’re doing in classes, and more.

And based on the information, it could do things such as suggest groups they might want to join, provide resources they might want to check out, and even recognize preferred learning styles.

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