It may seem like “old hat” now, but back in the 1990s, online learning was just beginning. Launched in December 1998, Saint Leo University was one of the first institutions to embrace online education with the creation of the Center for Online Learning.

Today, on National Online Learning Day (September 15), Saint Leo recognizes and celebrates its online students as well as the faculty and staff members who support their academic endeavors. 

So, what makes Saint Leo’s online programs stand out? Nancy Cheek, assistant director for Saint Leo WorldWide Student Life, which serves online and education center students, offers some highlights of online learning: 

  • Saint Leo offers small classes and remote services to keep students connected to the university, their industry or program area, and each other. 

  • Online programs are convenient. They feature synchronous and asynchronous coursework and activities, which meet the needs of adult learners juggling careers, family responsibilities, military service, and much more, Cheek said. With asynchronous learning, students access classes, homework, and other materials at any time during a certain time period. Synchronous learning is in “real time,” with the student in one location such as at home or work, while the instructor is in another location. This is much like being in a physical classroom. 

  • Saint Leo provides education with a religious foundation, incorporating the university’s core values into each course. For example, students in online business courses discuss ethical behavior by national companies — what does a company look like that embraces integrity? All students receive the same academic experience whether they study in a classroom or online.