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GSW moving graduate education classes entirely online this summer to give teachers more flexible schedule

Georgia Southwestern State University’s College of Education is moving all graduate classes entirely online this summer after an unprecedented year of stress, online learning, and other challenges related to COVID-19. The flexibility of online summer classes will allow teachers the ability to work with their systems, serve their students’ needs, and restore their own health and well-being.

GSW’s Master of Education (M.Ed.) and Specialist of Education (Ed.S.) programs, which can be completed in just 13 months, are normally offered in hybrid style – online and on campus. The on-campus portion during the summer is generally completed in three weeks during June with two full days on campus each week.

Rachel Abbott, Ph.D., dean of the College of Education, said this decision was not made lightly and genuinely felt it was in the best interest of GSW’s graduate education students.

“I began hearing from students about extended school year calendars, the need or desire to teach summer school, and the overall strain of the past year. I felt it was important to allow a more flexible schedule by not asking them to commute and giving them time to refresh and reenergize over the summer. It’s a good way for us to say ‘thank you’ to our teachers after this challenging year.”

Graduate students enrolled in the program were relieved to learn classes had moved online for this summer, especially those traveling from two to three hours away.

Casey Bazemore, a teacher at Ruskin Elementary School in Waycross enrolled in the M.Ed. Elementary Education program, stated, “As a teacher, being able to transfer classes online has been such a relief, especially given the stress of teaching during a pandemic and the overall uncertainty we've faced over the last year. I can honestly say it's one of the year's biggest blessings. Thanks, GSW!"

All graduate programs at GSW have seen a significant increase in enrollment over the last year. Professionals are wanting to further their education, earn advanced degrees, increase content knowledge, grow skill development, and become an expert or leader in their field.

GSW’s College of Education offers the state’s leading graduate program in terms of cost, convenience, and speed of completion. Students can complete a degree in 13 months at a fraction of the cost of most graduate programs. GSW offers graduate education degrees in Masters in Elementary Education, Middle Grades Language Arts, Middle Grades Mathematics, and Special Education; and Specialist in Elementary Education, Middle Grades Education, and Teacher Leadership.

After this summer, classes will resume as scheduled. This one-time change is only for M.Ed. and Ed.S.in the College of Education, not for the undergraduate classes or any other classes on campus.

Learn more about GSW’s graduate education programs at Virtual Admissions Sessions on May 3, May 10, and May 17. Register for these sessions at www.gsw.edu/admissions/graduate/index, or apply online at www.gsw.edu/admissions/graduate/grad-application. The deadline to apply is Friday, May 28.