The sociology department has received an award for being one of the top 20 best online sociology programs in the nation.
Technology has provided windows of opportunity for online classes and the way professors and students interact. The sociology department at Salt Lake Community College has worked hard to reach out to students of all backgrounds and give them interactive classes without the need to travel to campuses.
“My interest is making sure students have the same experience online as they do in a face-to-face environment,” says sociology professor Dr. Deidre Tyler. “You can learn more online than you could in a face-to-face environment. Technology has opened up the world.”
Tyler has been with the program for 17 years. When she first suggested to fellow professors that online courses be incorporated in the curriculum, they were a little hesitant. Now professors are continually trained in the world of online technology and instructed on how to deliver the right concepts to students.
The online course gives students the opportunity to enroll in school without needing to attend a lecture class every week.
Single mothers, people in the military and even students in other states have all enrolled in the sociology program.
“In the online environment people don’t see your gender, your race—they don’t see those things. It’s a kind of environment that makes things more equal,” says Tyler.
The program provides all the necessary tools for students to succeed.
Each class is not merely reading textbooks and taking quizzes online. Instead, teachers keep the students engaged through things like webinars and discussion forums.
The award given to the department is based on criteria such as how good the program is, how many students finish and how fast they move through the program.
“There is a need, and Salt Lake Community College is serving the need for students not just in the Utah area but nationwide,” says Tyler.
“It’s an honor [for] Salt Lake Community College to be listed with universities and other community colleges.”