Monday, July 13, 2009

Distance Education

PIU has been involved in providing classes through distance education for a little over three years now. At first, all the DE classes were provided to students at our teaching facilities in Yap, Palau and Chuuk with the hybrid model. That is a teacher, usually me in the first couple years, would fly to the teaching facility, stay there a week or two teaching traditional, but intensive, discussion-lecture type classes and then fly back to Guam. The students would then do their reading and writing assignments through email and on-line discussion forums. Other materials and quizzes were also taken on the PIBC-DE web site. Since then we have added a full-time Distance Education coordinator, Hartmut Scherer and, in addition to the hybrid courses, PIU has been offering full Distance Education courses and will offer three this Fall.

This is especially important for us, as lack of staff have forced PIU to close our Tol Campus in Chuuk and reorganize our teaching facilities. I was in Chuuk a couple weeks ago working on an agreement to set up a PIU Teaching-Facility DE Center on Weno, Chuuk and I will leave for Palau in a couple hours to work out a final agreement for converting our Palau TF to a DE Center. We are hoping to make all three DE classes available in both Chuuk and Palau this Fall. We hope to have the Yap DE Center up and running for the Spring 2010 semester. All these centers would look something like the Guam center pictured above. At present we can offer only a small portion of our full programs by DE but our plan is to have our DE programs fully recognized by TRACS so that we can offer full programs in these centers and to interested individuals by the Fall of 2011. I am also looking for interested teachers who can help us set up and teach distance education courses. For more information email me or the school at

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