SAC Adapts to Class Under COVID

Santa Ana College Campus/ By Julian Reynoso

In its attempt to adapt to the changing times, Santa Ana College offers five different instructional models for the Fall 2020 semester, ranging from fully online to face to face. 

Due to state and county guidelines, in-person instruction remains limited to trade classes such as auto and welding, medical fields like EMTs, and some sciences that require labs, though even these continue with limited and highly controlled face-to-face interactions.

While classes on campus remain limited, the administration is looking to the future. Vice President of Academic Affairs, Dr. Jeffrey Lamb, explained that they’re hoping to increase the range of face to face courses being offered in the second half of the semester.

If the Governor’s restrictions relax, we are seeking faculty who are willing to think through how to offer a late start face-to-face class in an “outdoor” classroom. The goal would be to offer a suite of transfer/General Education courses in a select number of disciplines,” Lamb explained. 

As for the remaining classes, there are four different versions of distance education to choose from, online (O), remote live (RL), remote blended (RB) and hybrid (H), all of which are notated on WebAdvisor. 

Many students are already familiar with online and hybrid classes. The former takes place entirely online, with no scheduled meetings in person or online. The latter are based online, but require several face to face class meetings on predetermined dates and times.

 Students may be less familiar with remote live instruction. RL courses follow a virtual meeting schedule that mirrors in person instruction. Though material and assignments are still largely Canvas based, students enrolled in remote live courses are expected to show up just as they would traditionally

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Similar to the way remote live classes are an adaptation of  traditional ones, remote blended courses are the fully virtual counterpart to hybrid classes. Those enrolled in these sections will receive the brunt of their instruction through online learning, with several virtual meetings throughout the semester at scheduled intervals. 

Even though there’s the possibility of a partial return to campus for some courses in the future, it’s important to remember that this is a marathon, not a sprint. Dr. Fernando Ortiz, Dean of Academic Affairs, says it’s uncertain when things will return to some semblance of normal.

“This is not something we have an answer for, at this time,” Ortiz says. “ The plan for Spring 2021 is to offer face-to-face and online/hybrid courses. If local and state health agencies approve of a full return to college plan, we will proceed. If local and state health agencies limit our return to college, we will revert back to our five teaching modalities.”

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