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Great Opportunities for Adult Learners (GOAL) Dr. Christopher Dyer, Dean of Academic Affairs Missouri State University- West Plains 128 Garfield Avenue,

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Presentation on theme: "Great Opportunities for Adult Learners (GOAL) Dr. Christopher Dyer, Dean of Academic Affairs Missouri State University- West Plains 128 Garfield Avenue,"— Presentation transcript:

1 Great Opportunities for Adult Learners (GOAL) Dr. Christopher Dyer, Dean of Academic Affairs Missouri State University- West Plains 128 Garfield Avenue, West Plains. MO 65775 (417)255-7273;

2 Earn an Associate’s Degree in only two years, one night a week? In a survey of 102 community respondents, 60% said Yes!

3 Why GOAL? The GOAL program model has unique characteristics which differentiate it from any other education programs available in the area. By combating the life circumstances that hinder adult learners from being able to attend a traditional college program, college access, enrollment and retention will be significantly increased.

4 Advantages of the GOAL Program Classes Convenient for Working Adults Small Class Cohorts Interactive Learning Environment Improved Employment Opportunities

5 The GOAL Program is for students who  Are working adults who have difficult schedules and cannot take time off from work or family to take  Myriad courses from a community college that may/may not result in a degree  Need a predictable schedule that will result in an AA degree within two years  Can contribute to a regional economic impact by raising their status as residents with college experience (AA degree)

6 Scheduling of the Program Participants may earn an Associate of Arts degree (62 credit hours) by attending class one evening each week for two years, with cohorts starts in August, January, and May. Classes are organized around a cohort model and are compressed to 5 – 6 weeks in length for seated classes, and 8- 10 weeks for online and blended classes.

7 Course Design  Courses are presented sequentially – students receive an orientation session at the beginning of each cohort.  Textbooks and syllabi are provided by the institution in the classroom, distributed on the desks to be used to students the week before each course begins along with the next week's assignments.  Participants share the classroom with professors who facilitate learning and other adults who have similar goals in a highly interactive learning environment.  Seated and blended classes meet one night a week and start at 6:00 p.m., allowing working adults to attend classes. These classes meet for four hours.

8 Course Design  Classes are scheduled so as not to interfere with weekday or weekend activities.  All courses are pre-programmed to meet associate degree requirements in a specific course sequence.  The program is specifically designed for working adults, 22 years and older.  The program is designed so that a group of students will start and finish together.  The program is for students who have little or no college credit and consists of general education courses needed for associate’s or bachelor’s degree programs.

9 GOAL Program Courses and Sequence

10 Piloting the Program Program pilot in three sites (“Goal Posts”) (50 students total) in our seven–county service area. For comparison purposes, the pilot sites range from mid-size to small towns— West Plains (population 11,986), Mountain Grove (population 4,552) Summersville (population 551) ( US Census Bureau, 2009).


12 On Monday, I stopped by the Dean’s office to submit paperwork after a recent conference. Tony! Buenos Dias! While I was there, Dean Dyer asked how things were going with the G.O.A.L. program. After some discussion, he asked if I could elaborate on my experiences in today’s meeting. So… I’ve made a brief presentation of my findings. A brief presentation of my findings. As you know, G.O.A.L. is not a “traditional” program. …and I am not a “traditional” professor. ( ( ( ( Even though the delivery method of the course has changed, the quality of my teaching hasn’t.

13 I am also happy to report that, thus far, the quality of the students in this program has exceeded my expectations. What do I mean by that? Well…looking blindly at the statistical averages between my traditional students and my G.O.A.L students… I crunched the numbers and found the following… To date, the G.O.A.L students are outperforming my traditional students. Students receiving A’s TraditionalG.O.A.L. 9%18% Generally, their writing is better…their discussion is clearer…and their effort is stronger.

14 This could be attributed to the fact that they are “nontraditional.” ( ( ( (  The cohort model  Their motivation  Maturity level  Life experience Other possible contributing factors to their success: No matter what the contributing factors, they are strong students, and I am proud to represent their voices, I will be especially proud to see this group graduate. MSU is a stepping stone toward a better life made possible by a better education. We have opened a door for them, and I believe even more students will line up to seize this opportunity. And as I have learned so far, these students can come from anywhere…with any type of background… Some might be construction workers.

15 Some of us are farmers! I served in the military! I just like to ride… Even if you think this whole program is a MAD experiment… Muhahaha! I would like to deliver some good news… Good things are happening out in Summersville, Mountain Grove, and here in West Plains. Value is being added to lives. Lifelong goals are being fulfilled, and best of all…we are all part of the magic.

16 Questions??

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