Online classes cost students more for the convenience

dmacc-online-webIf you’ve ever taken an online class or web-blended class, you may have noticed an extra charge to your tuition cost. For residents and nonresidents, the tuition costs are different. For residents it’s $136.00 per credit hour and for nonresidents it’s $272.00 per credit hour. But for any extra fees for any class it’s all the same. For online courses there is a $25.00 fee per credit hour, for web-blended courses there is a $10.00 fee per credit hour. With these fees it’s hard to imagine students not wanting to know where their money goes.

“All the fees from the online courses are put in towards payment for Blackboard and as well given back into the classrooms, to improve technology and to improve a better overall experience for the students,” Steffen said.

When comparing prices to other colleges, DMACC is fairly similar to most. Kirkwood is $140.00 where DMACC’s online classes per credit hour would be close to $160.00. Most community colleges tend to keep prices down, to draw in students and increase income as well to provide a better learning environment. Larger prices are found in four-year colleges as well as some community colleges.

Students around campus had differing opinions as well as some similar.

Katelyn Swanson, an 18 year old Liberal Arts major voiced her opinion about the topic.

“I would recommend taking online classes, just don’t take any classes like math, classes that you maybe aren’t ready for.”

Ryan Davis, 19 year old Liberal Arts major said this about online classes extra fees.

“I’m not a fan of that. From my understanding, web-blended/ online classes make you get textbooks from the DMACC bookstore instead of somewhere like Textbook Outlet.  It’s going to be more expensive for the books at DMACC and adding additional fees to the courses just makes everything less convenient for students.”

Others felt differently about the topic.

“Personally if I can save money anywhere in college I will… So if that means having to pay that small fee compared to all the gas I would spend actually going to class then I don’t mind too much,” Swanson said.

Many students agreed with each other about blackboard being confusing at first then after using it a while they got used to it as well as a little help from instructors.

“I used blackboard in my Composition Two class for the first time last spring. It was a little confusing at first but the instructor helped the class and it was pretty much self-explanatory for me afterwards,” Davis said.

Many question when they are going to update Blackboard and many other online applications to help become more student friendly.

“Improvements and upgrades continually come out via Blackboard and we adopt them as they are released,” Steffen said.

Online classes are tempting to take, make sure to check in with your Academic Counselor as well as your daily schedule, to figure out what classes seem to fit your schedule and availability as well as your emotional capability.

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