Online courses have been debated by various sources, including Governor Jerry Brown, the UC regents, and numerous college administrators, faculty, and students. The motivation behind such discussion is varied. Since there is no standard in online education, it has produced erratic results in terms of student performance and costs to students as well as administration. Online tools, if managed and prepared for properly, have the opportunity to provide the highly regarded individualized learning experience of the small classroom with the lower costs of large lecture halls while decreasing overall overhead costs. This article presents tools and a methodology to provide the small classroom experience in a much larger setting while keeping overall costs and time commitment down as well as improve overall student performance.
This modest sampling of using online teaching methods to improve an existing large in-class environment has been shown to be effective. Overall, students have varying amounts of motivation to ensure they do well and get the most out of their learning experience. Initial feedback suggests that the online videos are well received once they are presented with our hybrid teaching methodology. By using online tools, making small changes to how in-class sessions are utilized, and adjusting how students learn inside and outside the classroom, student performance can be increased without impacting factors such as cost and quality of education. In fact, by utilizing new technology and spending time to find effective means of conveying concepts and materials like that of the hybrid online methodology we can provide a more individualized experience for larger student classes in this time of increased enrollment, with a small increase in the number of TAs, and some initial online investment.