- With many colleges choosing blended learning to navigate the pandemic, accreditors and state boards have installed regulations for the ratio of student hours accrued online vs. in-person.
- To easily track student hours and distinguish between hours accrued online versus on-ground, some colleges have chosen to implement mobile attendance tools.
- With real-time insight into students’ attendance records, admins and instructors can take steps to keep students on track to graduate.
Many career colleges have adopted blended (or hybrid) learning models in response to the pandemic to keep students and staff as safe as possible without losing vital hands-on training.
One of the resulting new challenges schools have faced is collecting student hours during online courses in a way that accreditors and state boards approve of. Some schools have tried methods like conducting roll call at the beginning and end of class or making students email their instructors saying they were present.
But with those methods, when administrators receive attendance data, they might not know if the reported hours were accrued online or in-person. This is an issue because accreditors and state boards require that colleges conducting online courses in blended learning models keep track of which environment student hours were accrued in.
Some colleges have been able to easily distinguish between student hours accrued online and hours accrued in-person by using CourseKey’s digital attendance features. Through a simple course set up, admins can know in real-time exactly in which environment a student accrued hours. By having an up-to-date record of the ratio of student hours online vs. in-person, admins can make sure students are achieving the necessary ratio to graduate and can be prepared for a compliance audit at all times.
Let’s break down how it works.
Track Student Hours Across Courses
CourseKey allows students to check in and out of class, regardless of the course environment. When it’s time to check in, students open their CourseKey app, select the course from their course list, and tap “attendance.” Attendance data is then available to administrators in real-time through enterprise dashboards.
To easily distinguish between the hours accrued online vs. in-person, college admins can create separate courses in CourseKey and their SIS and label them as online or in-person. By separating the learning environments into two courses, admins can keep the data collected from each environment isolated, making it easy to determine the ratio between the two.
Additionally, instructors can see the change of a student’s attendance status on their class roster in CourseKey in real-time, allowing them to make sure attendance data is accurate when first collected. In online courses, instructors can compare the list of attendees of the video conferencing session with the class roster in CourseKey as a dual-verification process to ensure attendance data is accurate. If an instructor sees a student is checked in on CourseKey but isn’t active in the session, they can contact the student or update their attendance status on the platform.
Admin Visibility Into Student Hours To Ensure Compliance
Real-time attendance visibility in the CourseKey platform makes it much easier for admins to keep students on track to graduate. Admins can click into a students’ record in the CourseKey platform and see at a glance the ratio of their accrued hours online vs. in-person.
This data being readily available to admins in real-time is also vital to staying in compliance with accreditors’ and state boards’ regulations. For example, if a state board required students to conduct 60% of their program in-person and 40% of it online, admins can make sure that students are achieving the correct balance to graduate and notify them when they’re not on track.
With an efficient, compliant attendance process in place, schools can focus their efforts on other parts of their operations. Instructors can focus on their students and administrators can spend more time reaching out and supporting at-risk students.
Tracking Student Hours in Blended Learning
By using a mobile attendance platform to streamline the attendance collection process and keep admins, students, and instructors up-to-date on student hours, career colleges can conduct blended learning in compliance with accreditors and state boards.
To learn more about how CourseKey’s platform can take the headache out of attendance for your students, instructors, and admins, request a demo below.