Amarillo College switching to tech-supported learning for majority of classes

Local News

AMARILLO, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) — Several weeks into the fall semester, Amarillo College is switching most classes to a tech-supported learning format.

“We’re trying to create, as much as possible, a sense of normalcy for our students. However, they will be taking those classes at a distance and they won’t be here on campus receiving that instruction face to face,” said Bob Austin, Amarillo College vice president of enrollment management.

Starting Oct. 26, Amarillo College will make the transition from face to face to a tech-supported learning format for the majority of lecture classes.

“If a student is enrolled for a lecture-based course, that course is not going to meet face to face. So it’s the only option for students who are registered in sections that are designed to be lecture-based. Tech-supported basically means, some people call them Zoom classes. So we’re going to be using technology to deliver the course work at the time the class is normally scheduled to meet,” said Austin.

Austin explained one of the biggest reasons behind the move was the difficulty the professors had teaching the same class virtually and in-person, at the same time.

“It’s really about trying to manage this thing in a way that makes it manageable for the instructors,” said Austin.

With the city of Amarillo returning to level red COVID-19 stress status, Austin said the timing for the move is right.

“Things are pretty bad around town right now. We have students who are out. We have teachers, we have faculty, staff who are out,” said Austin.

Austin said ensuring student safety while keeping them on track to graduate is of the utmost importance.

“We wanted those students that are on a path to graduation to continue to make progress and we think this is the best way to do it,” said Austin.

Austin further stated the plan for now is to have this format run through the end of the spring semester and that the campus is not closed. Their support services for students are still available if needed.

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