What if you could earn a degree from the comfort of your own home while saving money and continuing to work at the same time? Well, that’s certainly a possibility with Florence-Darlington Technical College’s (FDTC) Online College.
It doesn’t matter what time of day or night it is, the Online College gives you 24/7 access to course content. Now, don’t get an online course confused with a self-paced course. There are still deadlines and work has to be completed by a specific time and date or else you’ll fail the assignment. However, the only time you’ll need to come to FDTC is to take an exam.
“Having that ability to login to that class at 4 o’clock in the morning or at 12 o’clock in the afternoon is wonderful,” Derk Riechers, Director, Online College said. “That is definitely a benefit of taking a course online. You can login to your class, and our system supports Apple, Windows and mobile tablets. It’s not just that you have to be at a desktop computer, you can login on your lunch break with a mobile device. It is all about 24/7 access.”
“I chose Florence-Darlington Tech, mostly because of the convenience of the online classes.”
- Callie Morris, Online College student
A major advantage to taking an online course is that your daily activities won’t be hindered by classwork. You can still keep your current job and complete your assignments when you get home. There’s no wear and tear on your vehicle as you travel back and forth to class. And the best part is, as long as you have an Internet connection, everything is accessible. You can be sitting in your favorite coffee shop and still be able to complete your assignments by using WiFi.
“I chose Florence-Darlington Tech, mostly because of the convenience of the online classes,” said Callie Morris, Online College student. “The affordability was a big factor. The staff and faculty are amazing. They have been amazing from Day One, the day that I walked in to get registered for my first class. I love the convenience of being able to do all of my class work and homework at home, even with my five-year old running around the house. It has been a really positive experience, not just for me, but for my whole family.”
For students enrolled in the Early College Program, online courses are a great option when schedules are packed with high school work, athletic practices and everything else that goes on in a high school teenager’s life. Plus, it’s a much easier way to get ahead while in high school.
With an online course, content is more up-to-date compared to some textbooks. For example, an instructor may base an assignment on a recent video uploaded to YouTube. Another great aspect of taking online courses is that you’ll have more time to email and chat with the instructors instead of trying to take in all of the information during a normal class time.
“In a traditional classroom, you can maybe only raise your hand once or twice and respond to your peers; but in an online classroom, if you choose, you can respond to all of your peers if you have that time,” Riechers said. “You can interact with everybody.”
Online courses cost the same as regular on-site courses. The courses also transfer to nearly any four-year institution. FDTC’s Online College offers over 100 courses, and if you’re earning your Associates Degree in arts, criminal justice, management or marketing, you can complete every bit of it strictly online.
When you login to the Online College, you’ll notice that the layout is the same for every class. Regardless of the course, a Marketing course or a Criminal Justice course, the content is arranged in the same generic way. That makes taking multiple classes much easier, because you aren’t constantly getting frustrated as you search for content and learn the interface.
“All of the classes will be the same, so if you’re taking English 101 during the first eight-week session and then you take a History 101 during the second eight-week session, the layout of the class is going to be the same,” said Lamar Younginer, Associate Director of the Online College. “If all courses are set up the same way, the students will know where the syllabus is, and they know where their quizzes and assignments are. The assignments will be different from the history and English class, but to get to the assignments, you’re going to go the same route.”
If you’re still hesitant about joining the Online College and earning your degree via online courses, here’s one more suggestion for you. FDTC’s Online College has a course that is accessible to the public. When you go to www.fdtc.edu, click on the “Students” section designed as a graduation cap at the top left of the page. Click “Desire2Learn” within the section. The USERNAME is guest2015, and the PASSWORD is fdtc2015. Once you have successfully logged in, feel free to explore and interact on the account anonymously. You can take quizzes, interact with individuals and get comfortable with the layout. Afterwards, give the college a call at 843-661-TECH, and we’ll get you setup for your online courses.
“What we’ve done is taken a real online course, and we’ve copied it into a student shell, and we’ve made the username and password public,” Younginer said. “We’ve put it on our website. A student can login and look at it. We’ve got about three or four weeks’ worth of content. We’ve got quizzes students can take, and nobody is going to know who they are. They can take a quiz, pass it, fail it, it doesn’t matter. They can post in a discussion board and ask questions, and we’ll interact with those students. We’ll give them a feel for what it feels like to enroll into an online course.”
For more information on Florence-Darlington Technical College’s Online College, visit www.fdtc.edu. You can also keep up with the Online College by liking our Facebook page and following @FDTCOnline on Twitter. You can also call Derk Riechers, Director, Online College at (843) 661-8061.
- Hunter Thomas