dcsimg

Interview: Lane Huber, Director Distance Ed, Bismarck State College

Lane Huber, Director of Distance Education at Bismarck State College joins us today to discuss their online degree programs.

Tell us about the distance learning programs offered at Bismarck State College.

Bismarck State College has been offering online courses since 1998. We currently have 10 complete degree programs online and each semester offer over 120 courses and nearing 200 individual sections of courses, serving students in 46 states. Our degree programs include an Associate in Arts (emphasis in criminal justice) degree and eight Associate in Applied Science degrees: Criminal Justice, Human Services, Management, Power Plant Technology, Process Plant Technology, Electric Power Technology, Nuclear Power Technology, and Electrical Transmission Systems Technology. We have three certificate programs: Information Processing Specialist, Web Page Development and Design, and Eligibility Worker. We've also just been approved to offer a Bachelor in Applied Science degree in Energy Management. We'll begin those classes in January of 2008.

What is the typical duration of each of your programs?

Because we are a community college, most of our programs are two-year degrees. Our Bachelor of Applied Science in Energy Management will add an additional two years to our energy AAS degrees.

What would you say makes Bismarck State College programs different and better than other comparable online programs?

While I'm proud of all the courses and programs we've offered over the years, we've developed a real niche in the energy technology area. What began as an extension of some programs that we've been offering on-campus since the 1970's has mushroomed into high quality industry education and training. Through unique partnerships and the securing of several grants, we've been able to create top quality programs that have been recognized at a national level. We've recently been designated as the National Power Plant Operations Technology and Education Center by the United States Department of Energy.

How important would you say accreditation is when choosing an online college?

There would be nothing more disappointing to a student than to find out they've spent a lot of money, time, and effort on online classes only to discover they will not transfer to another institution because of accreditation issues. I would encourage all students to ensure the institution they choose is fully accredited by a regional accrediting agency and is eligible to distribute federal financial aid.

There is some debate as to whether or not online degrees are as worthwhile as traditional degrees. What steps does Bismarck State College take to ensure that online students are receiving the same education that they'd receive in a classroom?

All of our online classes fall under the same departments as a traditional class would. The same department chair is evaluating the faculty member, the same course objectives are met in the courses, and the same rigorous curriculum is followed in both formats. The only real difference is the delivery method. This, of course, presents some challenges that we've had to be creative at addressing. One of our departments recently tested students, both online and on-campus, after finishing an introductory course in the discipline. The results showed no significant statistal difference between the two groups of students, which mirrors many studies that have been done nationwide. In the end, the student may have used different tools to learn, but achieved the same level of learning.

What would you say are some of the benefits of earning a degree online rather than in a traditional classroom?

Flexibility is a word we hear over and over from our students. For the most part, they are non-traditional students who are returning to higher education to pursue a degree. They are working adults with families and responsibilities. Without the ability to take classes online, it would take them a very long time to finish with night classes. I would venture to guess that many of them would be unable to finish their education. Another advantage is access to classes/programs that are not offered in a student's area. We offer very specialized technical degrees and unless a student would be willing to pack up and move to North Dakota, they would be unable to complete these programs.

Does Bismarck State College offer any job placement services to your students and graduates?

Bismarck State College offers employment related services to students, alumni, and employers. Employment opportunities are posted on an online system and are accessible 24/7. Services include on-campus interviews, resume writing assistance, and mock interviews, to name a few of the services.

Is financial aid available to students in your programs?

Yes, most of our students receive federal financial aid. We also have many scholarship programs available.

Do you have any advice for students enrolling in online classes for the first time?

Online learning offers students a tremendous amount of flexibility and freedom. This can be good AND bad. Students who think that online classes will be less work than traditional classes will find out quickly that this is not the case. There is no one prodding you in a classroom three times a week to get your work done. Students who tend to procrastinate will have to make a concerted effort to set up a weekly schedule to study, and then stick to it! Those students, however, that are self-disciplined and stick to a schedule each week find that online classes are a great way to get an education.

What do you enjoy most about your position at Bismarck State College?

I enjoy working with folks who are finally getting a chance to go back to school and earn a degree in a field they really want to get into. From time to time I'll run into a student that has completed one of our online degrees and they often tell me that if it wasn't for our programs, they would have never been hired or promoted. That makes it all worthwhile!

For more information on distance learning programs available at Bismarck State College, Go Here to Visit them Online.

Thank you Lane, for sharing and participating in this piece for Online Degrees 2.0

That concludes our interview!


Refine School Matches
Hide filters
  • SUBJECT Clear All

    See More

  • DEGREE

    See More

  • PROGRAM TYPE

  • START TIME

    LOCATION
    Please enter valid US or Canada Zip.

Searching Searching ...

Matching School Ads
  • Designated as a 2015 Military Friendly® School by Victory Media, publishers of G.I. Jobs®.
  • Each program is designed to instill the knowledge, ethical values, and interpersonal skills of professional practice and to foster values of social responsibility.
  • Offers several flexible learning options, including a blended format that combines campus and online learning.
  • Several scholarship opportunities are available for students who qualify.
Good for Working Adults
  • Online Courses
  • Flexible Scheduling
  • Financial Aid
  • Transferable Credits
  • Associate’s, Bachelor’s, and Master’s degrees available in a wide range of fields.
  • Flexible online programs offered in Psychology, Criminal Justice, Education, and more.
  • Assigned Financial Services Advisors to help answer student financial questions.
  • Servicemembers and their spouses can apply for the Ashford Military Grant to reduce tuition for all undergraduate courses.
  • Online Courses
  • Financial Aid
  • Transferable Credits
  • Full Sail’s curriculum combines elements of creativity, art, business and life skills, technical prowess, and academic achievement.
  • Full Sail offers accelerated programs, so a degree that would normally take four years takes 24 months on average.
  • Students work with industry-standard tools and technologies, allowing them to gain practical knowledge and real-world experience.
  • Join us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram to interact with our community, read about grad success, and see campus images.
  • Online Courses
  • Online MBA program ranked 6th in the USA by CEO magazine.
  • In a university-sponsored survey, 4 out of 5 alumni reported being satisfied with their experience.
  • #1 Online School for military veterans according to Military Times.
  • 75,000+ graduates across all industries offer extensive networking opportunities.
  • My Unique Student Experience (M.U.S.E.) lets students watch, view, read, or hear content.
  • Smartphone app available for on-the-go learning.
Good for Working Adults
  • Online Courses
  • Flexible Scheduling
  • Accelerated Programs
  • Financial Aid
  • Transferable Credits
  • Recognized as a Top 20 Best Online Bachelor’s Program by U.S. News & World Report in 2016.
  • Online, campus-based, and evening courses offered in 95 areas of study, including Business, Nursing, Psychology, & more.
  • Endorsed by G.I. Jobs and Military Advanced Education magazine as a Military Friendly School in 2015.
  • Features small class sizes, with a student-to-faculty ratio of 23 to 1.
  • 88% of Regent University students receive financial aid, with $18 million awarded in institutional scholarships & aid each year.
  • Online Courses
  • Ranked one of the Top Public Schools in 2017 by U.S. News and World Report.
  • Founded in 1766 as a public institution; it has a main campus in New Brunswick, New Jersey and offers many programs online.
  • Has an average freshman retention rate of 91.8%.
  • Its student-faculty ratio is 14:1, and 38% of its classes have fewer than 20 students.
  • Has famous alumni including chef and restauranteur Mario Batali, author Junot Diaz, actor James Gandolfini, and former U.S. Poet Laureate Robert Pinsky.
Show more [+]
Good for Working Adults
  • Online Courses
  • Flexible Scheduling
  • Accelerated Programs
  • Financial Aid
  • Transferable Credits
  • A Los Angeles-based private college offering programs in medical sciences, legal studies, and graphic design since 1985.
  • Has weekend programs, including certified  veterinary technology, nurse assistant, and hemodialysis technician.
  • Showcases visual communication students’ artwork and design through campus magazine.
  • 3 campuses in Southern California.
  • Accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC).
Show more [+]
Good for Working Adults
  • Accredited
  • Online Courses
  • Flexible Scheduling
  • Accelerated Programs
  • Financial Aid
  • Transferable Credits
  • Ranked one of the Best National Universities in 2015 by U.S. News and World Report.
  • Ranked 31st among the Best Colleges for Veterans in 2015 by U.S. News and World Report.
  • A member of the esteemed Association of American Universities (AAU), one of 62 leading public and private research universities in the U.S. and Canada.
  • Leading a first-of-its-kind mission to send a spacecraft to a near-Earth asteroid in 2020.
  • Offers the nation's only Bachelor of Arts in Law degree.
  • Has over 300 majors for students to choose from.
Show more [+]
  • Online Courses
  • Ranked 33rd among the Best Grad Schools for Social Work in 2015 by U.S. News and World Report.
  • Founded in 1904 as the nation’s first institute of higher learning to offer training for clinical social workers.
  • Provides a rigorous education, including a nationally accredited Master of Social Work (MSW) Program and PhD in Social Work.  
  • Offers inventive programs with hands-on experience.  
  • Incorporates social justice values and multicultural perspectives into curriculum. 
Show more [+]
  • Online Courses
  • Earn a Master of Social Work online from top-ranked USC Suzanne Dworak-Peck School of Social Work.
  • The CSWE-accredited program features live, online classes and hands-on field experiences near your community.
  • Bachelor's degree is required to apply
Show more [+]
  • Online Courses
  • Accelerated Programs
  • Financial Aid
  • Transferable Credits

An accredited online university, Capella University offers bachelor’s, master’s/MBA, doctoral, and certificate programs designed to take you to the forefront of your profession. Our competency-based curriculum delivers foundational knowledge and real-world skills, so what you’re learning is immediately applicable to your career. Right now, more than 36,000 students are expanding their opportunities with Capella programs.

  • Online Courses
  • Financial Aid
  • Transferable Credits
  • Ranked among the Best Business Schools in 2015 by U.S. News and World Report.
  • Ranked the #1 Public MBA program in the NYC region in 2014 by the U.S. News and World Report.
  • Educates about 4,500 undergraduate and graduate students per academic year at two campuses in New Jersey as well as five satellite locations in New Jersey and Singapore.
  • The only public university in New Jersey in the Association of American Universities (AAU), a group comprising of North America’s 63 leading research universities.
Show more [+]
  • Online Courses
  • Accelerated Programs
  • Financial Aid
  • Transferable Credits
  • Ranked among the Best National Universities in 2015 by U.S. News and World Report.
  • Ranked 8th among the Best Online Graduate Education Programs in 2015 by U.S. News and World Report.
  • A private, co-ed college founded in 1821 and located in downtown Washington, D.C.
  • Its student-faculty ratio is 13:1, and 55.1% of classes have fewer than 20 students.
  • Has distinguished alumni including Senator Harry Reid, former U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell, and actress Courtney Cox.
Show more [+]
  • Accredited
  • Online Courses
  • Accelerated Programs
  • Financial Aid
  • Transferable Credits
  • Ranked among the 2015 Best National Universities by U.S. News & World Report.
  • Designated as a Military Friendly School every year since 2012 by Victory Media.
  • Offers credit for prior learning and experience through assessment tests.
  • Provides a short term Leadership Certification program in partnership with EQUIP®.
  • Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) of the North Central Association (NCA).
Show more [+]
Good for Working Adults
  • Accredited
  • Online Courses
  • Flexible Scheduling
  • Financial Aid
  • Transferable Credits
  • Concordia pursues online learning with the same passion and commitment to excellence that has marked our 110-year history. Our online degrees provides the same high academic standards as our on-campus.
  • #1 in M.Ed Degrees awarded by a Non-Profit University with over 8,000 M.Ed degrees that have been awarded to Concordia Online Students (Based on 2013-2014 IPEDS data); #3 MBA Program in Oregon (2015).
  • Your diploma and transcript is exactly the same as what students receive from Concordia’s on-campus program and carries the same value as a traditional degree
  • Concordia offers a variety of scholarships, grants, and awards designed to make the cost of a quality liberal arts education more affordable. Military benefits are available to candidates who qualify.
  • Concordia offers outstanding student-focused support including technical support and student service teams to assist you from initial contact through graduation. 
  • Concordia University is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities at both the undergraduate and graduate levels.
Show more [+]
Good for Working Adults
  • Online Courses
  • Flexible Scheduling
  • Accelerated Programs
  • Financial Aid
  • Transferable Credits

Featured Schools