Reconfiguring the collegiate landscape, looking at how to better welcome ‘non-traditional’ students
One delightful aspect of the Life University (Life U) student body makeup is the fact that we support students from all different walks of life. For example, as recorded in the Fall 2022 Annual University Fact Book, 67 percent of Life U students are pursuing a Chiropractic or Graduate level degree. With such a large portion of the Life U campus past the undergraduate stage of their education, it’s necessary that the University take stock and figure out how best to serve a growing ‘non-traditional’ student population.
What are ‘non-traditional’ students?
The National Center for Education Statistics has debated what constitutes a traditional versus non-traditional student, as the norms for when, where and how students choose to continue their education has been much in flux in recent years. However, age plays a big part in this puzzle, as the older the student is, the more likely they are juggling other major responsibilities, such as work, children and mortgages. Here at Life U, the Fall 2022 Fact Book listed 41 percent of undergraduate students as over age 22. So, we understand there are many competing demands for your time and energy, and we want to make your educational experience as successful as possible.
Flexibility for your life at Life U
Make your education work for you by selecting a learning style that works for your life. Life U has been working tirelessly to give students more options to meet their class requirements. In the 2021 Fall Quarter, LIFE Flex was unveiled. It is an innovative approach to course delivery that provides students with flexibility and multiple learning opportunities.
Students had the ability for the first time to choose to engage with classes in three different learning styles: face-to-face experience on-campus; synchronously (real-time) online; or in some cases, in a self-guided, asynchronous (not real-time) option for portions of courses. Online offerings are accessed via Blackboard, Life U’s learning management system. Effective for the 2021 Fall Quarter, all Life University lecture classes utilized the LIFE Flex format. For a fuller picture of LIFE Flex, please read our full article on the topic titled “What’s Your Life (U) Style? – LIFE Flex Overview.”
Online degree programs offered at Life U for added convenience
Life U is currently in the process of adding several more exciting undergraduate and graduate-level online degree programs, so stay tuned. Dr. Jo Lobertini, Associate Dean of COE, had much to say about online education at Life U.
“What sets online learning at Life U apart from the rest? Superior student support and course design. Online students receive superior support from institutional staff and faculty. Tutoring is available from within the online classroom, and there is a dedicated online advising liaison who works to make sure online advising needs are met. Faculty have years of experience teaching online and take part in COE-specific training when they are hired.
Two of the COE’s online programs, the B.S. in Biology and the M.S. in Positive Psychology, have won national awards for their program design and delivery. All COE courses are carefully designed and developed by a team made up of a subject matter expert (faculty member), an instructional designer and a media producer working under academic leadership oversight. In this process, the faculty contributes subject matter, and the instructional designer supplies course development guidance based on the Quality Matters (QM) higher education standards for quality in online course design. These standards have been examined for consistency with the conclusions of the educational research literature on factors that improve student learning and retention rates, as well as activities that increase learning and engagement,” said Dr. Lobertini.
Life U offers the MSPP with two tracks: General Positive Psychology and Coaching Psychology. The MSPP is a fully accredited, one-of-a-kind online degree program. In fact, it is one of only a handful of such highly sought-after programs in the world. The MSPP at Life U investigates strengths-based research that enable individuals and communities to thrive.
Life U’s Bachelor of Science in Biology curriculum is grounded in a philosophy that is deeply respectful of the innate intelligence of life – the ability of all organisms to be conscious, self-developing, self-maintaining and self-healing. Life U works closely with biology students to help them pursue their interests in advanced educational endeavors or STEM career pathways.
Life U’s Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies provides a breadth of knowledge that is particularly advantageous in an increasingly complex and rapidly changing world, where today’s skills are quickly outdated by tomorrow’s new technologies. This degree equips students with the communication expertise, critical thinking abilities and a worldview that translate into transferable skills valued by all employers.
Life U’s Bachelor of Science in Psychology majors are taught to emphasize the inborn human capacities for love, courage, forgiveness, wisdom and interpersonal connection. Along with scientific study, these principles are woven throughout all coursework and culminate in real-life applications through either an internship or a senior thesis experience.
Life University’s Health and Wellness associate degree program is designed for individuals who wish to take part in America’s cultural change toward sustainable health choices, fitness and wellness-centered lifestyles. Upon completion of this health science degree’s requirements, graduates will be prepared to seek employment with recreational and health club facilities; community or corporate wellness programs; or pursue independent contracting. Alternatively, they may choose to pursue further higher education study.
This is a pathway designed to prepare students to go on to a Doctor of Chiropractic (D.C) program. There are three paths in which students can choose to complete this pathway. In the popular Path 1, students can earn their bachelor’s degree and work on their D.C program concurrently. In the Path 1 program, students have six potential majors to choose from, two of which are offered online (B.S. in Biology and B.S. in Psychology).
Slice of LIFE is an invitation to and extension of everything happening at Life University. Whether you are a current student, a potential freshman or a proud alum, Slice of LIFE can help keep you connected to your academic community. Know of a compelling Life U story to be shared, such as a riveting project, innovative group or something similar? Let us know by emailing Marketing@life.edu.