Liberty University now partnered with Straighterline

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by joel66, Jun 3, 2012.

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  1. joel66

    joel66 New Member

  2. SurfDoctor

    SurfDoctor Moderator Staff Member

    This is absolutely awesome. I have a buddy that I'm going to tell about this immediately.
     
  3. lawrenceq

    lawrenceq Member

    Good move!
     
  4. dumpyogre

    dumpyogre New Member

    I think partnering with straighterline only lessens a universities reputation.
     
  5. LearningAddict

    LearningAddict Well-Known Member

    Why do you say that?
     
  6. JBjunior

    JBjunior Active Member

    I didn't want to be the first to say it, but I agree. I think the system they use is flawed and too easy to manipulate. There is no accountability for testing, unlike say a CLEP. You can finish an entire course online during a weekend by finding answers on google because they went the cheap way in designing their courses. Cool way to earn credit, but from the perspective of a colleges reputation, I think it is a bad move.
     
  7. rebel100

    rebel100 New Member

    I agree that there is something lacking with SL, over time I have noticed that many schools eventually leave the Straighterline fold (Fort Hayes and Florida Gateway College for example). As mentioned there is no real check and balance within the coursework. With that said however, I believe they have the solution available and will eventually institute proctored exams to ensure the programs integrity.

    I'm not knocking SL, I used them for a class myself, but I think they would admit that the whole concept is a work in progress. I hope they continue adding courses and partners...it's an interesting business model if nothing else.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 4, 2012
  8. Maxwell_Smart

    Maxwell_Smart Active Member

    I'm not sure I can agree with the worry with SL. I mean, I understand it, but in reality most regionally accredited online programs have the exact same issue and no one seems to care about that (no proctored exams and little or no integrity monitoring) so I don't see what makes Straighterline any different in that regard at all...

    And as far as being able to find answers on google, you can do that with coursework at any school be it online, offline, RA, NA, or otherwise. Why? Because everybody is using similar textbooks and course designs, so it's easy for anyone to find something online that corresponds with what their courses are offering. If you take a course in College Algebra for example, you'll be able to google and find the same questions all over google from countless other schools using the same textbook and same question sheets, and of course you'll find answers, too. It's just the age we live in; information and answers are everywhere. So it's up to the integrity of the individual to not take the very easy route available today of basically cheating.

    And finally, with regard to being able to finish a course quickly, well that's just how independent study can work and that's always been the beauty of it. Having taken many self-paced courses and many guided courses, I found many of the self-paced courses to be best for me; I could finish a course in 1/4th of the time that the guided course version would've taken and quite frankly would've wasted my time. This is especially good for courses that have very little difficulty. It's just a waste of time to be forced into sitting through easy work for 8+ weeks when you could've knocked it out on your own in 2 weeks or less and achieved the same grade.
     
  9. TEKMAN

    TEKMAN Semper Fi!

    That's great for more educational opportunities.
     
  10. JBjunior

    JBjunior Active Member


    What regionally accredited school has courses that are entirely test based, without proctors, and no discussion boards, essays, or other interactions for validating learned material? Heck, even Penn Foster (DETC) required a proctored exam for their correspondent courses. Also, name a school or course that in your experience has had the issue of copying and pasting directly from the test with the exact answer popping up in google, if so, was it a stand alone (no other means of verifying learning) for credit? If so, fine, there are other checks and balances that I named in the first sentence. It is about validating the experience and the learning. My current grad school doesn't have exams but I have to write essays continually along with interactive discussion boards. TESC had essays and proctored exams. Liberty has exams, discussion boards, and essays.

    My point wasn't the time. It was the ease of manipulating the system and the little amount of time that could be spent doing it. Yes any system can be manipulated, it is harder to manipulate an entire system that includes multiple methods of validating learning. I like the idea, and the company, I just think that there has to be some transitions and I think they are on the right track if they are moving to change up some of the practices.
     
  11. Maxwell_Smart

    Maxwell_Smart Active Member

    I honestly wouldn't be all that surprised if such a program like that existed. I've known of some that didn't have discussion boards and no proctors (the no-proctor part being very common). And there are some courses that don't require essays, and that can be found at any school... but all of that isn't directly the point I'm making. I'm talking about the lack of proctored exams and in association the lack of monitoring with so many of these programs.

    Many DETC programs have had that requirement for years. The problem now is that this may be slowly going away at some DETC schools as more of them are switching to a weekly guided format and it could possibly eliminate this. I know McKinley, The American College of Technology and some others have added guided formats. I'll have to look into whether or not those schools have somehow maintained proctoring with the change.


    I'm not sure what you mean exactly based on how you worded that... but the point I'm making is so many schools are using the same materials and some of these materials (both questions and answers) can easily be found with a google search. I attended a few schools where I searched for questions (with the exact sentence) in google, just curious if something would show. I got hits from many schools who'd posted these quizzes and tests online on pages at their school addresses, and that was from tons of schools across the accreditation landscape. In one such instance, the Q's & A's were found on a McGraw-Hill education website which really shocked me, and moreso when I looked deeper into the search and found tons of schools using that same quiz/exam word-for-word. What was popping up most of the time was probably being used in ground-based courses but it doesn't matter, we're all connected due to the internet so the info is easily shared for anyone who can search.

    There are millions and millions of students going online every minute of the day, so it's inevitable that information from classes will be discussed, questions will be posted, and answers will be given outside of the classroom. It worries me that sometimes the textbook manufacturers make webpages with Q&A quizzes and exams constructed directly from the info in their textbooks and then make it available for anyone who can search for it, but it doesn't surprise me when I see an answer to a course question being shared at Yahoo Answers or Just Answers or some other place, because as I said it's inevitable given the nature of our age (internet).

    Dismissing that because it doesn't make up 100% of a grade is not the right idea in my view. Any percentage of a course that's so vulnerable to this issue just taints the integrity/quality of the course in my opinion. Sure, it's not an issue for students who won't cheat, but we all know that if you leave people the option a lot of them will take it.


    Lots of essay writing is common for grad programs, and SL of course does not have courses at the grad level so I wouldn't expect the same sort of requirements for them. Although, I've heard of Heriot-Watt having an MBA program entirely by exam (not sure if that's still the case or not).

    I'd be remiss not to mention that SL does have essays/written assignments for their English and Business Communication courses. This could be a requirement in other courses there, but those are some I know of off the top.

    TESC should, especially considering its model, and I feel SL should too. I'm 100% in favor of proctored examination which is why I mentioned these things.

    With regard to Liberty U, I've felt certain Liberty would have exams... but are they proctored? If so, how does Liberty handle the scheduling?


    I understood that point. I'm concerned with how exams are being handled at many schools, and my point is that what SL is doing isn't much different in that regard. As I've said, I don't think dismissing the exam issue because a course measures competency in multiple ways besides examination is the proper way to look at it. But if SL starts having proctored exams, they will in reality be doing something that many of their partner schools probably don't which would be kind of interesting in its own right.
     
  12. dumpyogre

    dumpyogre New Member

    Straighterline only has an interest in offering cheap and fast college credits. They have no real interest in actually educating a college student. They found an easy way to make money while the non-profit "gettins are good". Expect them to be shut down within the next several years along with many of the for-profits they are in bed with.
     
  13. Petedude

    Petedude New Member

    I don't know-- sometimes I think misspellings and grammatical errors within a negative posting do more damage than Straighterline could.
     
  14. I don't really have much of an issue with SL. True, a student could probably just google the answers to the exams. That would probably hold true for a lot of RA schools at well. Personally, I feel it's the STUDENTS job to learn. If SL provides the information and the student googles the answer and chooses not to learn...that's on him/her. That doesn't mean every student is going to do that. That doesn't even mean that the majority of their students are doing that. It just means that some (however much that may be) is/could be doing that. If the student does "cheat" then that's more of a reflection upon them and not the school.
     
  15. lawrenceq

    lawrenceq Member

    None of my 10 classes at Liberty University required a proctored exam.
     
  16. joel66

    joel66 New Member

    That could be one of the reasons why WGU Texas requires online proctoring for all of the final exams with straighterline.
     
  17. dumpyogre

    dumpyogre New Member

    y u so mad, brah?

    Bachelors degree from Western Governors? *snickers*

    Excelsior? lmao

    Come back when you have a masters from a top 50 national university, small fry.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 5, 2012
  18. dumpyogre

    dumpyogre New Member

    "Fine, but consider this: The transfer issue could has an odd silver lining to it-- it may help encourage some of those who sign up to be sure they're committed and they're going to stick it out."

    The glaring grammatical errors in that sentence are reason enough for me to believe you are riding some pretentious wave of hostility due to a lack of proper university pedigree.XXXXXXXXXX

    Edited by SurfDoctor.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 5, 2012
  19. SurfDoctor

    SurfDoctor Moderator Staff Member

    Oh my. I didn't know that; never experienced a Straighterline course. If that's the case, maybe I will revise my enthusiasm for the idea.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 5, 2012
  20. SurfDoctor

    SurfDoctor Moderator Staff Member

    This is an issue I have been worrying about for some time. In some of the online schools I have attended in the past, I have gotten to the point where I realized that I did not have to even read the text book. If you are good at writing papers, you can BS your way through a class in many of the online schools, especially in the Education programs.

    An online exam does not have to be proctored to truly measure learning. NCU did a good job with their timed exams. You either knew the answer or you didn't because there was no time to look it up online. As much as people put down NCU, it was one of the toughest online schools I attended.
     

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