Get a great “Foundation” with new WKU ON Demand courses

WKU On Demand is very pleased to announce that we have added two exciting new, and newly redesigned classes Foundations courses to our catalog for Spring 2018:

MAT 109C (General Math), newly redesigned by Mr. Zachary Bettersworth, is a Math course for non-science majors, suggested for the student who has satisfactorily completed the minimum high school math requirements and needs no further work in algebra.

MAT 109C satisfies the Foundations Quantitative Reasoning requirement. Topics include sets, introduction to probability and statistics, geometry, and consumer mathematics. MAT 109C fulfills the D.2. (Mathematics) general education requirement here at WKU. The course will help the student to understand and apply mathematical skills and concepts. Students complete their work in MyMathLab and there are two proctored exams in the course.

Dr. Marko Dumancic has developed HIST 102 for WKU On Demand. HIST 102 (WORLD HISTORY SINCE 1500) satisfies the Foundations World History requirement. HIST 102 provides an introduction to the global past since 1500. It helps students to understand the diversity of and the connections between the world’s cultures and ideologies and to become acquainted with global political, social, and economic history. It uses readings, exams, and “history labs” to introduce students to major historical developments and consequences as well as key achievements, turning points and individuals impacting world history.

This course also encourages students to think analytically about how people have created and adapted societies and institutions in response to the challenges and opportunities that have confronted them. In addition to the essay and lab work required for this course, there are three proctored exams.

History 102 aims to prepare students for life by emphasizing: Critical thinking, informed citizenship, historical perspective, and social engagement.

Both of these courses are currently open and available for registration. If you know a student who may be interested, they can register for our self-paced, online courses anytime by phone (270-745-4158) or online ( Payment is required at the time of registration, and Financial Aid is accepted.


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DELO Shines at OLC Accelerate Conference

Several members of WKU’s DELO team presented at the annual Online Learning Consortium’s (OLC) Accelerate convention on November 15. The OLC Accelerate convention is focused on “quality online learning, advancing best practice guidance and accelerating innovation in learning for academic leaders, educators, administrators, online learning professionals and organizations around the world.”

DELO’s Center for Innovative Teaching and Learning’s Instructional Design Team members Juliana Ortolani and Andrew Swanson’s presentation, “Video in Teaching and Learning: Stay Ahead of the Curve” explored the impact that video has on a global scale, and how this information applies to teaching and learning, and the implementation best practices. Their presentation made the case for the importance of video in online classes, and why this medium specifically should not be ignored. Andrew and Juliana gave specific teaching and learning video examples displaying how to effectively engage students and meet learning outcomes. They also explored different video tools, both hardware and software, for creating engaging videos on a scalable level.

WKU Online’s Holly Young, the Center for Innovative Teaching and Learning’s Catie Yates, and WKU On Demand’s Donna Kasznel presented, “The C.A.R.E. Model: Reconstructing the Online Learning Experience through Individualized Student Success Coaching.” This session explored the various avenues through which the program builds relationships with students and guides them through their academic experience. As non-traditional learners continue to redefine higher education, it becomes increasingly important to provide digitally-accessible alternatives for instruction and student support. The session encouraged participants to consider the possibilities of administrative intervention in the form of student-centered success coaching.


OLC describes itself as ‘a collaborative community of higher education leaders and innovators, dedicated to advancing quality digital teaching and learning experiences designed to reach and engage the modern learner’, and the thousands who attended the three-day conference benefited from a wide variety of innovative educational presentations and interactive sessions.

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New Resources For Online Learners And Faculty/Staff Who Work With Them

As you know, this year DELO reorganized to sharpen its focus on online learning and strengthen the support provided to students and faculty. As part of this reorganization, WKU Online & WKU On Demand have joined forces to increase the breadth and depth of the support provided for online learners with a focus on  student success and retention, as well as student recruitment.

Since coming together this year, we’ve increased outreach efforts, student support services, and have begun the development of new reference materials and resources for faculty and staff who work with online learners.

Below is a brief “progress report” with a few resources that may interest you:

  • Developed the Advisors’ Guide to Online Learning: The Guide is a comprehensive website for faculty and staff who work with online learners, and is tailored to allow direct navigation to most needed resources from a faculty and staff perspective. This site will provide you with the most up-to-date information on things such as:
    • Online Degree Programs
    • Completing the Colonnade Program Online
    • Changes Impacting Online Learners
    • New Support Services for Online Learners
  • Worked with the instructional design team to redesign the Topper Orientation Program for Online Learners: TOP for Online Learners is for degree-seeking undergraduate students, and built around the idea that  the needs of those studying exclusively online differ from those living on campus. TOP for Online Learners walks students through the process of setting up their student accounts and accessing resources online. They also receive tips for succeeding at a distance, gain an understanding of financial aid, as it applies to web and on demand classes, and more! In TopNet, students with a “web” campus indicator are directed to this page for more information. Once enrolled in the orientation, and they proceed at their own pace. Upon completion their TOP hold is lifted, they are provided with advisor information, and can download a guide for future reference.
  • Expanded Coaching for Academic Readiness & Excellence (CARE) via Starfish EARLY ALERT: Starfish is a retention software for monitoring student progress in their courses and degree program, and provides daily reports of critical action items. The list of action items are based on the parameters of the flags that coaches set-up in Starfish. Flags are among the key features in Starfish – they are customizable and can be set based on academic standing, type of course, student, student-group, course participation, assignments, and/or course average. They allow coaches to manage those most at-risk, first, through a comprehensive dashboard that reaches across all disciplines.
    Starfish makes it possible for staff to provide high-touch support for a large number of students in an efficient manner without ever seeing inside the Blackboard course site. This, in turn, helps faculty manage their workloads.
    It’s scalable, and student centered. The implementation of Starfish EARLY ALERT has allowed us to increase the number of students who receive coaching from 12 to over 2,000!
    For more information on CARE, including coaching best practices and a virtual tour of Starfish EARLY ALERT, click here.
  • Newsletters: As an additional way of reaching out, and providing timely information, we now have both a student newsletter, and a faculty/staff newsletter. The faculty/staff newsletter is published quarterly, and will be sent by email. Additionally, you can always access the latest issue through the Advisors’ Guide.
  • Expanded Communication Plans: As part of the recruitment process, we have expanded communication plans, and enhanced the information provided to prospective online learners. This communication incorporates inbound marketing strategies by providing timely, student-centered information based on the value of earning a degree, career outlook information, and downloadable resources. Communication goes out to students who have inquired, but not applied for admission, and students who have been admitted, but not registered for classes:
    • Initial inquiry correspondence
    • Follow-up correspondence received within two days after initial conversation
    • 2 weeks
    • 30 Days
    • 45 Days
    • 60 Days
    • 90 Days
    • 120 Days

Working Together…

Have you noticed a gap in support among the online learners with whom you work? Or do you have a cool idea for a new support strategy? We would love the opportunity to work with you! If you have suggestions – whether it’s for how we can improve internal communication/information or student support – please email me or call 270-745-4087.

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WKU Professor Anton Recognized for Supporting Continuing Education Through Unique Intergenerational Classroom

A WKU professor was recently selected to receive the Continuing Education Faculty Award at the University Professional & Continuing Education Association (UPCEA) South Region Conference in Richmond, Va.

Dr. Audrey Anton, assistant professor of philosophy, received the award on October 12 for her class, “Living Like a Stoic.” She developed the course to allow philosophy students to study alongside members of the Society for Lifelong Learning at WKU (SLL) – an organization that offers a wide range of high quality, intellectually stimulating, non-credit educational programs and experiences for those 50 and over.

The course allowed both groups of students to learn together, resulting in lively discussions from varying perspectives, regardless of age.

“I believe an intergenerational learning community amplifies lessons learned from any subject, but this is especially so with philosophy,” Anton said.

“‘Philosophy’ means love of wisdom, and life lessons are certainly part of wisdom. Through intergenerational exchange, students from every stage in life can benefit from hearing from others — whether it be reflecting back or looking forward.”

Associate Vice President of Extended Learning Dr. Elizabeth Laves is a member of UPCEA and also attended the conference. She stated said that Anton’s enthusiastic, innovative approach to teaching encourages students to be engaged learners.

She was a natural choice for this award,” said Laves.

Dr. Audrey Anton received the UPCEA South Region Faculty Award

Dr. Audrey Anton (right) received the UPCEA South Region Faculty Award on October 12. Dr. Elizabeth Laves (left) also attended the conference.

“Through her Stoicism course, she developed a unique, intergenerational classroom environment that created conversation, learning and engagement between very diverse groups of individuals,” said Laves.

Nominations for the faculty award are submitted by UPCEA South member institutions. According to the organization’s award requirements, nominees must “have assisted in the field of continuing education in a worthy and exemplary manner.” Nominees are evaluated based on the following criteria:

  • Served as an excellent teacher to continuing education learners
  • Developed and/or coordinated model continuing education programs
  • Facilitated new programming areas through continuing education
  • Opened new avenues for the advancement of continuing education learners

WKU Lifelong Learning Program Manager Dr. Cindy Ehresman nominated Dr. Anton for the award, which included written recommendations from SLL Advisory Board members Valerie C. Brown and Kenneth W. Kuehn, as well as SLL Curriculum Chair Barbara Johnston.

“Dr. Anton is an outstanding teacher whose enthusiasm, creativity and highly-innovative teaching methods encourage her students to be engaged learners,” said Dr. Ehresman.

“We were honored to nominate her for this prestigious award.”

For more information about the Society for Lifelong Learning at WKU, visit

Founded in 2014, the Society for Lifelong Learning is a member-driven organization dedicated to offering a wide range of high quality, intellectually stimulating, non-credit educational programs and experiences for ages 50 and over who have a love for learning.

# # #

Society for Lifelong Learning Contact
Dr. Cindy Ehresman
Program Manager, WKU Lifelong Learning
Western Kentucky University Division of Extended Learning and Outreach



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Society for Lifelong Learning to Host Fall Open House and Annual Meeting

The Society for Lifelong Learning at WKU (SLL) Annual Meeting and Open House will be held Sunday, August 27 from 2-4 p.m. at the Knicely Conference Center.

The public is invited to attend, along with SLL members, faculty and staff. Anyone can attend the Annual Meeting at 2 p.m. Coffee and dessert will be served from 2:30-4 p.m., and attendees can meet class instructors, inquire about membership options and pick up information about courses offered during the fall term which begins in mid-October. Course registration and membership enrollment will also be available.

The SLL is a member-driven organization for people 50 & over interested in high-quality, intellectually stimulating, non-credit programs and experiences. Members enjoy access to a vast number of courses each term, ranging from art, music and culture to economics, history and science.

“At Annual Meeting and Open House, people can engage with others 50 & over who have a passion for learning,” said Dr. Cindy Ehresman, lifelong learning program manager.

“It’s an excellent opportunity to experience what the SLL offers: intellectual development, personal growth, cultural exploration and social interaction.”

The SLL fall term begins October 16 and will offer over 25 classes and four Food For Thought events.
Ehresman stated that SLL volunteer have been hard at work developing two new initiatives this year, as well.

“We will encourage members to establish Interest Groups which will gather members with similar interests in a specific subject or hobby together,” said Ehresman. “We will also offer an exciting series of programs called An Evening With . . .”

According to Ehresman, the series will feature prominent thought leaders who, through a moderator-led interview, will provide insight into their thoughts on modern events and issues. The first will be held Wednesday, October 11 and will feature Chief Justice John D. Minton, Jr.
Additional speakers are currently being booked.

For more information about the SLL Open House and Annual Meeting, visit or call 270-745-1912.

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What’s new with WKU Online & On Demand this summer?


As summer on campus comes to a close, we’d like to share with you the Summer 2017 newsletter from WKU Online & WKU On Demand.

Here’s what you’ll find in this issue:

  • Faculty Spotlight on engaging students in the online classroom with Dr. Jane Olmsted
  • New resources that will make it easier than ever to work with online learners
  • A guaranteed online pathway for completion of Colonnade
  • A new website/reference guide with downloadable resources. The site, made possible by your contributions, is designed to provide easy access to information that faculty and staff need most when working with online students. Topics range from using financial aid with online and on demand courses to the ins and outs of earning a degree online, and how students can complete Colonnade entirely at a distance.
  • Student spotlight
  • Departmental changes

Access the pdf online by clicking here. Prefer a flip book over pdf? No problem! Access the flip book here.

We’d love to hear from you! Please share your ideas for how we can expand the reference guide, downloadable resources, and/or support for online learners by emailing me at


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New Courses Offered through WKU On Demand

WKU On Demand’s unique, self-paced course structure allows us to add new courses to our catalog throughout the semester. We have recently added several exciting new, and newly redesigned classes:

CIT 458, Systems Analysis II, taught by Dr. Mark Revels, covers analysis and design of object-oriented systems. Dr. Revels teaches five other Computer Information Technology classes for WKU On Demand.



AGRI 108, Rural Sociology, is taught by Thomas Kingery.  In this course, students will learn about rural social groups and interaction in rural and suburban America as well as in rural areas of the world. Students will also learn the basic concepts of society and culture and the relationship of rural population, class, social institutions, and groups on rural social change.

PHIL 341, Plato and Aristotle, taught by Dr. Audrey Anton, is the study of primary texts to assess and compare the contributions of Plato and Aristotle and related figures to issues in metaphysics, epistemology, ethics, and political philosophy. This is the second philosophy course that Dr. Anton is teaching for WKU On Demand; her PHIL 102 course (the Good and the Beautiful) satisfies an Explorations requirement.


MGT 210, Organization and Management, is taught by Dr. Dana Cosby. This course includes both the theory and practical application of management. “Managing into today’s dynamic organizations presents opportunities for success. However, managers will also face the challenge of handling unique problems.” Dr. Cosby’s goal for the class is to help individuals prepare for this environment by focusing on and enhancing communication skills, ethical awareness, and global awareness.

PS 301, Methods of Political Inquiry, taught by Dr. Joel Turner, focuses on the research process, and the understanding and application of scientific research methods for the analysis of political behavior; it also utilizes theoretical and applied skills in research development and analysis using contemporary computer techniques.


Please check out these engaging new classes offered by WKU On Demand. We have more than 125 self-paced classes in more than 25 different subject areas, and as always, you can register for On Demand courses any day, any time, anywhere!

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The Little Big Red story begins

#littlebigredThe Office of Study Away invites you to follow Little Big Red’s adventures throughout America and around the world.

Watch for and share #littlebigred on Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat.

On Facebook, like the page @wkulittlebigred.

Little Big Red connects students and faculty on our Study Away, Faculty-Led Study Abroad, National Student Exchange, and the Cooperative Center for Study Abroad programs.

wkulittlebigred in Morocco

Little Big Red in Morocco

Little Bid Red debuted in Morocco with Alesis Thomas on her first study abroad course.


Learn more. 

With the students, Little Big Red will experience new cultures and new places.



Learn more about all these opportunities at Study Away and CCSA.

Share and Like today to keep up with Little Big Red.

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The Cooperative Center for Study Abroad Kicks off the Summer of 2017

The Cooperative Center for Study Abroad (CCSA) kicked off the 2017 Summer with “Ireland: One Island, Two Countries.”

Students and faculty started the on-site course on May 17 and return to USA on May 31. During the program, students will study across an island divided by a border, but joined in history. The course includes both the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland.

From Dublin, the capital of the Republic, faculty and students will uncover the cultural significance behind Glendalough, Trinity College and places made famous by such writers as James Joyce and Jonathan Swift. Then they will head to Northern Ireland (part of the United Kingdom), tracking the history of Ireland, ancient and modern, stopping at the magnificent coastal World Heritage Site, the Giant’s Causeway, and visiting locations associated more recently with the Troubles in Belfast and Derry. Then it’s off to the beauty of the mountains, valleys and islands of the West of Ireland where Gaelic and traditional music can still be heard. Together, they will discover the beauty and the tragedy, the history and the hope that define this land still struggling to be united.

Students in Dr. Bruce Pratt’s Agriculture course visit Alltech near Dublin, Ireland

The program includes four faculty, with each teaching their own course: Dr. Maire Blankenship is a WKU Nursing faculty on her second CCSA program; Dr. Barbara Burch from Georgetown College will teach her first English course with CCSA; Dr. Robert Mullaney from EKU will teach= his first occupational therapy course with CCSA; and Dr. Bruce Pratt from EKU will teach agriculture with CCSA for the first time.

Dr. Maire Blankenship’s nursing students at Jeannie Johnston Famine Ship in Dublin, Ireland

Thirty-five student and two non-credit participants will join program director Scott Boyd from MTSU.

Jerry Barnaby, Executive Director of CCSA, said, “The summer 2017 programs offer a unique set of courses taught by intrepid faculty from CCSA member institutions.” He added that CCSA is made up of small and large schools, private and public, but everyone believes in CCSA and the model it offers for so many first-time study abroad students.

CCSA’s twenty-six member institutions are gearing up for the winter 2017-2108 programs in Dublin and London. The summer 2018 catalog will feature a new programs in Ghana and South Africa Scotland, along with the existing programs in Belize, Ireland, Scotland and London.

More information is found at or by calling 1-800-319-6015 or 270-745-4512.

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WKU’s SGA Awards Scholarships to Study Away Students

wku study awayThe Student Government Association (SGA) at WKU has awarded two $300 scholarships to WKU students taking study away courses during Summer Session 2017.

Through continuing support of a Study Away Scholarship, SGA encourages students to expand their learning opportunities off campus. SGA first began offering this scholarship to students taking a Study Away course during Winter Term 2011 and has since sponsored over 64 scholarships, totaling over $7,200.

The Summer 2017 Scholarship recipients are:

kennedy mayo

Kennedy Mayo

Kennedy Mayo, a freshman from Lebanon, KY, studying history and social studies.  She said this scholarship enables her to enroll in the new study away course in Hawaii called, “Hawaii Land & Resources.”





noah rudloff

Noah Rudloff

Noah Tyler Rudloff is a Bowling Green sophomore studying Corporate and Organizational Communication. He hopes to someday attend law school and says the course, “Citizen and Self,” centered in Washington D.C., will be right in the heart of what he wants to do with his life.




Study Away Director Jerry Barnaby said that study away courses are an excellent complement to traditional classroom courses, and that scholarships like this help students access these opportunities.

“The SGA scholarship makes a positive impact on students by giving them additional resources to take study away courses,” said Barnaby. “We appreciate the way SGA encourages students to expand their overall academic experience by providing Study Away scholarship opportunities. I encourage other organizations to follow SGA’s lead and develop their own scholarship programs to help students expand their study away opportunities.”

Study Away offers off-campus courses that enable students to apply the lessons learned in the classroom in a practical, hands-on setting. No passport is required for study away courses since they take place within the United States.

Additional information about WKU Study Away is available at For information about the SGA Study Away Scholarship, please contact Jerry Barnaby, Director of the Office of Study Away at 270-745-4512.

Study Away is a unit of the Division of Extended Learning and Outreach.

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