ERIC Number: ED381199
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1995-Feb
Reference Count: N/A
Contract Training and Computer-Assisted Instruction at Santa Fe Community College.
Ortego, Sheila; Richards, Beverly
In summer 1993, Santa Fe Community College, New Mexico, created the External Programs Division (EPD) under its credit instruction program to serve the needs of non-traditional students. The EPD encompasses contract training, the Flex Lab, distance education, the AutoDesk Training Center, an Alternative Fuels program, and the corrections training program for prison inmates. The Flex Lab offers 29 courses in various disciplines, focusing primarily on computer operations. Students have the option to enroll late into the semester, work at their own pace, and work at the assignments at times and on days convenient for them. In January 1994, the Flex Lab had 99 students at the beginning of the semester, and had doubled its enrollment by the time classes closed on March 31. In spring 1995, 453 students enrolled. The contract training program has a heavy audience from state government and local business. Merging contract training with the Flex Lab provides an effective, affordable solution to business training needs. Advantages to merging these two programs include the following: (1) flexible scheduling eliminates the need for many employees to be out of the office at one time; (2) the self-paced, mastery learning courses accommodate students who can master course objectives very quickly and others who may progress more slowly, returning all students to the workplace with the needed skills; and (3) lack of competition and the ability for students to move at their own pace creates a better learning situation. The college is discussing a format whereby companies could pay a flat fee and then enroll a certain number of students over time, allowing employees to pursue different topics of interest at the reduced rates of the contract courses. A list of current Flex Lab courses is appended. (KP)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Santa Fe Community Coll., NM.