Regent University has always offered a wide range of master’s degree programs. Now, the university is speeding up the timeline for many of these courses and providing more opportunities for prospective students to start learning. The eight-week class model that undergraduate students have followed to quickly complete their degrees is moving to the master’s level in several of Regent’s seven graduate schools.
This new model is opening the door to new possibilities for adult learners like Travis Elliott ’13 (School of Education). “I am a high school teacher and basketball coach,” said Elliott. “The fact that I can knock out a course ‘crunch style’ while not losing out on a valuable learning experience works well with me. I like that I have to just face it head-on and, before you have time to realize what you just did, it’s over. That is my style.”
The School of Education was among the first to move to the eight-week format for master’s degree programs. Eight-week courses are also being offered in the Schools of Communication & the Arts, Business & Leadership, Divinity, Psychologoy & Counseling, and Government.
“Regent University has always been committed to offering all of our students – on campus and online – a preeminent learning experience. Our university is also committed to ensuring that it remains sensitive to the dynamic life-landscape of all of our students,” said Dr. Gerson Moreno-Riano, executive vice president for academic affairs.
“We wanted to expand our successful undergraduate 8-week class format to many of our graduate programs to ensure that our high quality programs are accessible to as many students as possible. This expansion would not have been possible without the guidance of our chancellor and CEO, Dr. Robertson, and without the support and hard work of the university’s deans and faculty.”
Regent’s goal is to offer students increased flexibility in course schedules and provide more start dates during the year. Under the new structure, students may start new eight-week academic adventures in August, October, January, March, May and July. Previously, students could only enroll three times per year. Now, two sessions of courses will be offered in spring, summer and fall semesters.
“It is at a challenging enough pace that keeps me on top but is not overload. I was nervous about an eight-week master’s course being too much at once since I am already a full-time teacher, however the pace is perfect,” said Elliott.
Although the length of time students have to complete courses has decreased, they say the new format allows them to dedicate their focus to fewer topics.
“I find that the eight-week classes help with the overall semester,” said Angela Hamrick, ’14 (School of Education). “Instead of keeping up with three classes at once, I only have to focus on one or two at a time. While the pace might be a bit faster, I have fewer subjects and classes to keep up with each week. I like that.”
Although students are able to focus on fewer classes at one time, the new format also allows them to graduate faster. More rotations of classes per year shortens the amount of time between the beginnings of classes and the ends of degrees.