AS REPORTED IN THE NACOGDOCHES DAILY SENTINEL:
Rolling out of bed 30 minutes before class starts and surviving on ramen noodles and Dollar Menu snacks are typical behaviors of traditional college students. Some students at Stephen F. Austin State University may be getting a few extra minutes to sleep in now, since the number of online class enrollments at SFA has risen to nearly 14,100 as of the 2009-10 academic year.
There were 8,913 online enrollments in the 2007-08 academic year, which grew by 20 percent to 10,686 enrollments in the 2008-09 school year, according to information from Randy McDonald, director of instructional technology at SFA. Approximately 25 percent of the students at SFA take at least one online course, and at least 1,000 of the nearly 13,000 students take classes just online. Between online and hybrid courses, there are nearly 300 sections of courses available online for spring 2011.
"Over the past five years, there has been a significant increase in the number of students taking online classes, and I think that's due to the programs we have which are online only," Dr. Richard Berry, vice president of academic affairs, said. "Students might take 12 hours face-to-face, and then they might decide to take astronomy online."
Some courses, including an acoustics course in the physics department, are offered only online, Berry said. Online classes do cost $75 more than a traditional class, or $25 per semester credit hour.
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