Tarrant County College is one of five charter members of the League for Innovation Online Course Sharing Consortium—a new, national network of two-year colleges designed to expand students’ access to virtual courses, reduce time to degree completion and ultimately increase graduation rates. The consortium is particularly important following the challenges of the pandemic, which forced many students to leave school or delay their re-enrollment.
In addition to TCC, Austin Community College, Lamar Institute of Technology (Beaumont), Montgomery County Community College (Pennsylvania) and Yavapai Community College (Arizona) will work with the League for Innovation and a software and support firm called Acadeum to develop course-sharing partnerships.
TCC provides online education through its sixth campus, TCC Connect. The campus offers 37 fully online programs and more than 350 courses, including everything from core subjects such as math and history to journalism, office administration and information technology. The College’s enrollments for eLearning have increased approximately 18 percent since fall 2017.
“As we offer select TCC Connect programs and courses to schools in the consortium, students will have greater flexibility to choose affordable courses and programs that are important to them and get them closer to their degree and career,” says Carlos Morales, Ph.D., president of TCC Connect. “Our participation benefits TCC by expanding our presence regionally and nationally and generating revenue with new students from other colleges enrolling in TCC’s virtual options. This is a win for everyone.”
TCC is expected to share its first courses—in programs such as business, accounting, marketing and general education—in fall 2021. Students will continue to pay tuition and maintain official enrollment through their home college while accessing courses from TCC; Acadeum will facilitate the logistics.
This is TCC’s second online course sharing partnership. The College participates in the Digital Higher Education Consortium of Texas, known as Digitex—also organized by Acadeum. Through Digitex, 18 Texas community colleges share online courses; the League for Innovation Online Course Sharing Consortium is believed to be the first to organize course sharing among community colleges across the country.
“Community colleges are incredibly important to the strength of our economy, particularly as we work to come back from the devastating impact of COVID-19,” says Eugene Giovannini, Ed.D., chancellor of the Tarrant County College District. “By working together to increase access to online courses, we can make it easier for students to achieve their academic goals, get a well-paying job and contribute to their communities.”
Learn more about the League for Innovation Online Course Sharing Consortium on the Acadeum website.