The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way of life for the nation’s college and university students. Many institutions have switched to online learning or a hybrid environment combining online with in-person study. Other schools have tweaked their existing 100% online platforms.
Start a degree program at American Public University.
MyClassroom – A New Learning Management System
One such school is American Public University (APU), which recently introduced MyClassroom – a streamlined new learning management system (LMS) – for its global student population of more than 30,000. APU, in existence since 1995, offers more than 200 online degree programs at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Full disclosure – I am a current student – and employee – at the university.
I’m familiar with various online education environments, but MyClassroom is the best I’ve utilized to date. Like anything new, the platform involves a learning curve for existing university students who were used to the previous LMS. However, just as in 1996 when I replaced my VCR with a fancy new DVD player (yes, I’m old), I can attest to a seamless transition with the LMS.
Making the Online Classroom Similar To An In-Person Experience
MyClassroom provides a user-friendly approach to online learning by keeping students engaged and up to date while offering the same amount of discussion that a traditional in-person college course provides. All of the conversations between students and instructors are written in an open-forum thread – available for all class participants to engage in. Of course, email is available for one-to-one communication.
MyClassroom utilizes a tab layout where a student can easily navigate to his or her required section of the degree course they are enrolled in. All of the course’s lessons, videos, learning activities and similar materials are found under the “Content” section; a student can check his or her course completion percentage under the “Class Progress” tab. Under “Course Tools,” one can easily access the course syllabus, assignments, quizzes and more.
The “Library” tab takes the student to the Richard G. Trefry Library page – an academic library that serves students, faculty and staff at the university. The library contains thousands of “licensed articles, scholarly journals, databases, books, e-books and video collections.”
All the Tools in One Place
All of the tools needed for an online student to succeed are neatly slotted into the MyClassroom LMS, and the platform admirably demonstrates how traditional students affected by COVID-19 in-person school closures can seamlessly make a temporary – or permanent – jump to an online learning environment.