BEEBE, Ark. – ASU-Beebe this week released information regarding plans for a blended menu of class options for the Fall 2020 semester, along with resuming campus tours for prospective students starting July 1 and promoting a series of open registration dates planned for student sign-up.
Dr. Jennifer Methvin, chancellor of ASU-Beebe said, “Our administration and academic teams have been working throughout this pandemic to craft a plan that would not only support choices for our students on how they choose to take classes but also follow recommended guidelines and ensure the health and safety of our students, faculty, and staff.”
To help students prepare for the fall term, ASU-Beebe will host Open Registration events on its Beebe, Searcy, and Heber Springs campus locations for both new and returning students to get their fall class schedules set. Registration dates and times are:
July 13th July 15th July 23rd
2 p.m. – 7 p.m. 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. 9 a.m. – 2 p.m.
July 29th August 6th August 11th
2 p.m. – 7 p.m. 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. 9 a.m. – 7 p.m.
“We know this year was pretty stressful for many students,” said Tyler Bittle, ASU-Beebe registrar. “With this schedule of open registration days well in advance of the fall semester, we want students to feel some sense of relief that they can continue their education locally. On any of these dates, students can meet with an academic advisor and get their schedule all set for the fall.”
For students and parents who would prefer a remote registration option they can email to schedule an appointment for advising and registration at any time: Scheduleclasses@asub.edu. For more information on how to register for classes for the fall term, students can also go to: http://www.asub.edu/registrars-office/registrationinfo.aspx.
ASU-Beebe also plans to resume in-person campus tours beginning Wednesday, July 1st on its Beebe, Heber Springs, and Searcy campuses. All prospective students are welcome to tour the campuses and discover how ASU-Beebe is more than a classroom! Tour appointments can be scheduled at: http://www.asub.edu/admissions/campus-visit.aspx
To ensure that tours are a fun and safe experience, the college does request that prospective students and their guests be aware of the following:
- Students must schedule a tour appointment in advance at http://www.asub.edu/admissions/campus-visit.aspx
- Tours will be held at 10:00 a.m. & 1:30 p.m. every weekday Monday – Friday.
- Guests should follow social distancing practices by maintaining six feet between themselves and their tour guide.
- Face masks are not required; however, only guests with a face mask will be permitted to enter buildings on campus. The Admissions Office can provide guests with a mask if they do not have one of their own.
- A maximum of (5) guests, including the prospective student, will be able to attend the campus tour.
ASU-Beebe also offers Virtual Visits for students to chat with an Admissions Counselor from the comfort of their home. Students can schedule a virtual visit on the campus visit page. http://www.asub.edu/admissions/campus-visit.aspx
Since the ASU System announced in May that all ASU System Schools would return to offering face-to-face instruction in the fall term, ASU-Beebe has been preparing to offer its students a menu of course offerings this academic year.
“Clearly, COVID-19 made us rethink how we deliver the quality education and programming our students need,” said Dr. Jason Goodner, chief academic officer at ASU-Beebe. “We looked at a class from multiple angles – space requirements for social distancing, technology requirements, class sizes, rotating schedules, faculty support, student access, testing methods, and the flexibility to move all classes to 100 percent online if necessary.”
After planning and review of ASU System guidelines, Arkansas Department of Education guidelines and state and federal health guidelines, ASU-Beebe will offer classes this fall using several course options for students.
- Traditional face-to-face courses where classes/labs will be positioned to ensure proper social distancing in each classroom/lab space. Class size will be limited by classroom space. On average, classrooms at each campus will allow for 12 to 15 students per course or class meeting period.
- True online courses, where all course content is delivered online, remain as planned. Additional online courses may be added as necessary.
- Internet Assisted (IA): IA courses will follow the practice of meeting 50% face-to-face and 50% online. To ensure proper social distancing class size will be limited to no more than 15 students depending on classroom space.
- Internet Assisted – Zoom (IAZ): Many courses on the Fall schedule will be classified as Internet Assisted – Zoom. In this format, the enrollment will be limited to 25 to 30 students. The course will meet 100% online, but will have a scheduled class meeting time via Zoom. For instance, if a course is scheduled to meet MWF from 10:00 a.m. to 10:50 a.m. it will continue to do so, except remotely via Zoom.
- Internet Assisted Zoom – Hybrid (IAZH): An IAZH course is a mix of face-to-face instruction and Zoom. The class size will remain at 25 to 30, and students will attend using both face-to-face and via Zoom in rotating schedules. This format encourages face-to-face instruction while maintaining social distancing and small group size.
- Super Sections – Several classes will be combined and moved to the Owen Center Theatre or Science Building Lecture Hall to create super sections of 30 or more students. The lecture hall seats 120, and the theater seats 430 so these facilities can support a larger class while still ensuring proper social distancing for participants. Some of these sections at the ASU-Beebe Heber Springs Campus may also utilize larger space at the college’s Latimer Center facility in Heber Springs.
In planning for fall classes and class development, faculty were directed that all ASU-Beebe courses, regardless of delivery method, will include a course curriculum shell in the college’s online learning system Canvas.
“We felt it critically important that faculty be prepared to deliver educational content online via Canvas, in the event we are quickly forced to move entirely online again in the Fall due to another spike in the pandemic,” Goodner said.
ASU-Beebe is also conducting additional Zoom and Canvas learning system training for faculty in advance of the fall term to ensure a smooth student experience with the use of the online technology.
To help faculty, staff and students identify the new course delivery options, each course will have the category identifier added in the course selection listing. Students will be able to pick and choose their preferred delivery method when selecting the course they need. Goodner says ASU-Beebe anticipates completing the course information update by July 10th so that students have adequate time to select classes and register before Fall classes begin August 17th.
As state health and education officials issue more information to educational institutions, Methvin says ASU-Beebe will communicate detailed information for students and families regarding specific protocols for the fall session including traffic flow within buildings, access requirements (wearing facial coverings) and classroom protocols and social distancing guidance.
Methvin also noted that the college maintains a Coronavirus Information page on their web site at www.ASUB.edu where the public can stay informed on all updates. For specific information regarding registering for Fall 2020 classes, students or parents can call 501-882-8860.