Plymouth State University & Virtual High School Partner to Offer
Graduate Certificate in Online Teaching & Learning
Becomes First Program of its Kind Ever Offered by the University
October 10, 2007, Plymouth, NH & Maynard, MA – Plymouth State University’s College of
Graduate Studies , and Virtual High School Global Consortium, the pioneer of online learning for
high school students and online course design for teachers, today announced a strategic
partnership. This alliance is aimed at imparting K-12 teachers with 21st century teaching skills,
preparing them to create and instruct an online course.
Starting immediately, the two organizations are offering a 5-course graduate certificate program
for teachers focused on online teaching and learning. This is the first time Plymouth State
University (PSU) is offering an online-focused teaching program. Through the partnership, VHS
will instruct and administer the courses online with PSU providing the credit.
"This program is different from others because for more than 10 years, our core focus has been
on transforming traditional teachers into online teachers, something that resulted in unmatched
expertise," said Liz Pape, President & CEO of VHS. "In addition, regular sharing of ideas
amongst our community of online teachers ensures that both new and veteran teachers remain
on the cutting-edge of online learning."
Ideal for teachers who have limited experience or skills integrating technology into their
classroom, the program consists of the following five online courses. Upon completion, the
student is awarded 15 credits and a graduate certificate.
21st Century Teaching & Learning - Explores the technology literacy and Information
and Communication Technology (ICT) skills needed for effective 21st century teaching
Web-enhanced Classroom - Prepares face-to-face teacher to incorporate online
resources into their classroom instruction.
Online-extended Teaching - Prepares teachers to promote active independent learning
experiences for students by joining the best features of in-class teaching with the best
features of online learning.
Web 2.0: Collaborative Construction - Prepares teachers to use the tools of Web 2.0 to
generate new and exciting learning experiences for students of all abilities and learning
Becoming an Online Teacher - Give participants the opportunity to experience online
teaching by partnering with a VHS online master teacher in an established middle or
high school course.
For teachers who cannot take all five courses, three credits per course can be earned. With the
exception of Becoming an Online Teacher, all of the courses began on August 15, 2007 and will
be offered again starting on October 24, 2007 and every few months after that.
"Plymouth State University is pleased to continue our longstanding collaboration with VHS," said
Dr. Dennise Maslakowski, Associate Vice President for the College of Graduate Studies. "The
development of the graduate certificate program in online teaching and learning demonstrates
Plymouth State University's and Virtual High School's shared commitment in preparing
educators to integrate new technologies into the classroom and the curriculum."
VHS is a non-profit collaborative consisting of schools, teachers and students. The organization
partners with school districts to provide 240 core, Advanced Placement (AP) and elective
NetCourses, allowing schools to expand curriculum offerings with courses they otherwise would
not be able to offer. Each course is taught by a highly qualified and certified teacher at VHS
member schools. These teachers first complete VHS’s rigorous graduate-level online
professional development program, which teaches how to transform all of the elements of an
face to face course into an online course and engage and foster collaboration between
students. They then deliver award-winning online asynchronous VHS courses while continuing
to teach at their schools. While the course teacher may be located in a particular state or
country, the 25 students in the course can represent many different states and countries. As a
result, VHS’s virtual courses help students develop 21st century skills by fostering online
collaboration with students from all over the globe.
For more information, visit http://www.govhs.org/Pages/ProfDev-Home.
About Virtual High School Global Consortium (VHS)
Virtual High School Global Consortium is the pioneer of online course design and
instruction for teachers and online education for high school students. VHS
partners with schools to provide rigorous, student-centered online courses that
help expand vs. replace existing curriculum options. Members of the VHS
collaborative include over 9,000 enrolled students per year, 370 active member
schools and 235 teachers in 30 states and 23 countries. The recipient of the
United States Distance Learning Association (USDLA) 2005 and 2007 awards for
Excellence in Programming and Excellence in Best Practices and the Stockholm
Challenge 2001 Award for exemplary use of technology in education, VHS was
founded in 1996 and is headquartered in Maynard, Massachusetts. For more
information, visit www.govhs.org or call (978) 897-1900.
VHS Press Contact: Carol Arnold, Arnold Communications,
firstname.lastname@example.org, (877) 718-4604 x2.
Plymouth State University is a regional comprehensive university offering a rich, student -
focused learning env ironment for both undergraduate and graduate students. PSU offers more
than 40 majors and 60 minors in programs that include education, business, humanities, arts,
and natural and social sciences. The College of Graduate Studies offers coursework that
promotes research, best practices and reflection in locations both on- and off-campus and
online. For non-traditional students, PSU’s Frost School of Continuing and Professional Studies
offers working professionals opportunities to pursue an undergraduate degree by attending
classes in the evenings, weekends and online. Located in a beautiful New England setting,
Plymouth State University has been recognized as one of the "Best in the Northeast" by The