This archived article was written by: Tiffany Cloward
As most of you have probably noticed, the College of Eastern Utah is offering only one partial internet course this semester. There is however, something called the Utah Electronic College that every student or prospective student should know about and possibly take classes at its site.
The Utah Electronic College is a unique program that allows a student to take any and all internet and independent study courses offered by every single college and university in the state of Utah. Even better, is that students can finish their entire Associate’s Degree online and can also transfer these credits to any other college or university they should choose to attend.
Often it is hard for student’s to decide if distant learning is the right choice for them. Distance learning is most beneficial to those who don’t have the time to put aside in each day for a regular class. The UEC offers a survey on their website called the DEAR survey, which is designed to help students decide whether or not distance learning will be the best decision for them.
An online class does include many of the same things that a traditional class does. There are still lectures, exams, and text books to study, however the student has the opportunity to do their school work at a time in the day that works for them.
According to the website description of distance education, classes and lectures could be delivered as text and/or audio files on the internet, on a videotape, or a CD.
Taking exams may involve finding an appropriate proctor, if you live far from the provider school. The student also has to plan extra time to get textbooks delivered by mail or exams delivered to your proctor.The process is to first apply to the UEC online and pay a small application fee of $35. Then the student must choose a home school. So for instance, those students who live in Price would choose CEU as their home school and be able to take classes offered by the University of Utah or any other institutions that offer classes through the UEC. After choosing a home school the student can register for any of the nearly 250 courses offered on the UEC.
Many classes found in the UEC catalog follow a traditional semester calendar (August to December, January to May, and May to August). Some are accelerated, and others are open enrollment. The classes following the semester calendar generally have specific time periods for taking exams and submitting assignments.
Open enrollment classes allow you to register any day of the year and give you a completion deadline of up to nine months based on that start date. A good rule: check with the instructor before you register for the minimum completion period. There are several other courses that are offered also under the UEC catalog link on their website.
To pay tuition the student would simply pay whatever the tuition states per credit hour for that school. For example, if a student chose to take one class that is offered by Utah State Valley College and one that is offered by Salt Lake Community College, that person would pay $90-$100 dollars per credit hour for Salt Lake Community and $155-$168 per credit hour for Utah State Valley College, depending on the class taken. According to the website, UEC tuition is linear.
This means that each credit the student takes costs a certain price. Five credits is five times that price (See the UEC Tuition Schedule for specifics). There are no front-load student fees.
Also, there is no cap where, if the student takes additional credits, you do not pay additional tuition. Schools may charge additional technology fees per class. The UEC catalog bundles all course costs for each class as “tuition and fees” under course details. Because UEC tuition is different from tuition for on-campus classes, the student may have to pay a fee if wanting to take advantage of certain campus services such as computer labs or internet access and recreational facilities.?
Transferring credit is also quite simple. The UEC does advise every student to check with their home school counselor or academic advisor regarding transfer credit, however as a general rule, all of the public colleges and universities accept transfer credit as long as a minimum passing grade was earned. From school to school the degree requirements do vary so classes may vary in what requirement they fill at the school that the student transfers to.
On the website one of their most frequently asked questions were how the students would obtain transcripts for the classes that they have taken. The website states: The UEC requests credits are reported back to the student’s home college each semester. If a grade is not reported in a timely fashion, contact the UEC. The UEC will provide instructions on requesting a transcript from the college providing instruction. When the student is ready to graduate they will need to contact the transcript office at each of the colleges from which they took classes and request an official transcript be sent to their home college.
A student is also able to obtain financial aid if wanting to attend college through UEC. The process to receive financial aid would be done through the student’s chosen home college and this is where their application for financial aid would be completed. Also, the student would need to request to complete a consortium agreement.
This information and more is located on the UEC website which is www.uec.org. There is also contact information for representatives from the school to help students decide what will be best for them.