5200 SW Meadows Rd. Ste. 150 Lake Oswego, OR 97035 info@cmasas.org
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The Human-Centered Approach to Learning

09 Sep

The Human-Centered Approach to Learning

Posted By: 
Kimberly White

This week's message comes from school co-founder, Chris Geis. Chris lives with his wife, Linda, in sunny San Diego and travels throughout the country to meet with CMASAS students and staff. 

The most frequent question I hear from parents thinking about enrolling their children in CMASAS is “what makes us different from other online schools?”

The quick answer is simple - it's the people - our instructors, Personalized Education Coaches, Administrative team - that separates us from the rest.  After all, it is the connections that students make during their school years that are most memorable - even for students at a distance based online school.

To be honest, I am sure other online schools feel the same way about their staff.  Maybe not all, but at least some.  So, what is it that truly sets us apart from other online schools other than the people?

Over the past few years, we were one of the first to adopt Brainhoney as our Learning Management Platform, the technology used to present our courses.  What used to help separate us from other online schools, is now fairly standard as I see other online schools adopting the same technology.  What sets us apart from other online schools is then truly what we (our people) do with the technology and platforms for learning.

From day one, we provide a friendly, efficient and exceptional personalized experience for students and their parents.

Here are a few ways that we use technology and Brainhoney learning platforms to make online school education personal:

We respond to student inquiries within 24 hours with the expectation of same day response whenever possible.>

Students are activated and contacted by their initial instructor within 24 business/school hours of processing of the registration fee and tuition along with submitting our online enrollment application.

By focusing on fewer subjects, we have found students go more in depth in their learning and enjoy the subject matter better. Students typically take 2-3 courses at a time, focusing on one main course - often completing a full semester course in just a few (4-6) weeks, while still working on their other available courses.  We believe that in the real world, people typically don't juggle 6 projects at a time, and students shouldn't either.

We are a mastery-based learning model which requires students to achieve 80% or above on their assignments and assessments prior to moving on in the course.  What we have found is that students are generally satisfied with receiving 85-87% on their assignments/courses -- at first.  A funny thing happens to some students after their first few classes at CMASAS.  They start asking the instructor how they can do better.  The 85-87% is no longer their bar - they are shooting for that 90% or above.  They are motivated to earn an "A". And our "people" love hearing a student want to do more, learn more!

We are reachable.  While you may not get a live person immediately all the time, we do our best to answer every call and return calls promptly.  We don't use a call center to handle our calls, we answer our own incoming calls and take every inquiry and request very seriously.

We truly believe that distance-based learning can be a very personable experience for students and parents.  Despite the fact that students and instructors are separate from each other geographically, online school be personalized and definitely involves a meaningful human connection.

We invite you to become a part of the community.