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Gordon State College-2016-Adult Learners/Non-traditional Students/GBMA

Year: 
2016
Demonstration of Priority and/or Impact: 

About 12% of the GSC student population in any recent year has been adult learners.  As the USG’s primary access institution in this part of state, we believe that we can help a greater number of adult learners complete their college degrees.

Summary of Activities: 

GSC established the first cohort for a Weekend College Human Services degree in spring 2015.  Human Services is a multidisciplinary profession integrating the fields of psychology, sociology, government and administration. Gordon’s program is unique among Human Services degrees in incorporating business, government, and economics courses in addition to the customary sociology and psychology curriculum.   The primary emphasis of the curriculum is to provide practical, real-world training so that graduates can gain immediate employment.

Weekend College students meet one weekend per month at Gordon State College-McDonough and complete the remainder of their coursework online.  McDonough is located in Henry County, from which 23% of GSC’s total enrollment comes and 30% of our adult learners.

The Weekend College in Human Services established two more cohorts during the 2015-2016 academic year.

Metrics and Measures: 

Weekend College Enrollment by Cohort

Spring 2015

Fall 2015

 Spring 2016

24

24

(4 enrolled summer 2015)

15

Measures of Success

The cohort enrollment goal is 25 students.

Lessons Learned: 

We have had two related challenges: reaching our enrollment goal for each cohort and allowing convenient program entry when applicants have already earned some of the program credits and are ready to enter. We have decided to go to one cohort per year, in the fall, and we have altered policy and process so that we can add students to an existing cohort without their having to wait until the next fall term, when that will work to the student’s advantage.

Prior Learning Assessment continues to be a challenge for fire fighters, police officers, and government managers, students who are interested in a Human Services degree.  There does not appear to be a template for linking training competencies to our courses in business and management.  A DANTES-type assessment tool is needed.

Strategy: 
Weekend College
Point of Contact: 
Dr. Barry Kicklighter, Department Head for Business and Public Service