Two traits have characterized Coastline Community College since the day this unique institution was founded, in 1976. One is steadfastness of purpose. Conceived as a college without walls, Coastline has remained true to its founders’ motto: “The community is our campus; its citizens are our students.” The other constant is a commitment to change as an institutional dynamic. There is a sense of urgency to continuously rethink College policy and practice in response to the changing circumstances of students, community and the larger world.
As a technology driven institution, Coastline Community College (CCC) became the first college in the US to produce, create and offer telecourses. These Emmy award winning (16 Emmys to date) instructional video series are licensed by hundreds of colleges and universities and broadcast to locations throughout the world. In locations where great distances must be traversed to attend classes, telecourses have been a robust means to deliver rich content to remotely located students.
Staying true to this founders innovation model of distance learning delivery and leveraging the robust content from its instructional design group, Coastline recognized and understood the complexities and challenges faced by the highly mobile military student. Coastline applied its long history of distance learning innovation to specifically serve the military in the early 1980s. Coastline has delivered educational content to a military audience in cutting-edge technologies like smart phones, PDAs (PocketEd Program) and serious virtual gaming worlds like SecondLife. The College also was a leader in technologies now considered more commonplace: CD-ROM and internet. Coastline College’s Military Program offers one of the widest arrays of course options from robust and active internet courses to CD-ROM based courses to PDA courses in our, one of a kind, PocketEd Program.
The College has agreements with every service branch and is most notably involved in the NCPACE (Navy College Program for Afloat Education), NCPDLP (Navy College Partnership for Afloat Education), Air Force’s CCAF-GEM (Community College of the Air Force - General Education Mobile), GoArmyEd, Coast Guard SOCCOAST Afloat- Courses for Cutters and MyCAA military spouse program.
Coastline is a regionally accredited Servicemembers Opportunity Colleges (SOC) Member institution, which offers to 40 credit hours of equivalent college credits for military training and CLEP/DSST testing. The college provides free “unofficial” evaluations to provide and assist prospective or new students with the selection of their first course and an overview of requirements toward an Associate degree.
Understanding the difficulties of scheduling encountered by the military student, the college offers five short-term, 8-week sessions per year. Coastline also offers 12-week courses for SOCCOAST AFLOAT and NCPACE programs which are scheduled by Command. Class schedules are carefully constructed to allow students ample time to complete assignments and a meticulous guideline to keep students ‘on track.’ Coupled with the Evaluations process noted above, students always have a clear path from starting with Coastline, through their course and to the point of graduation. As testament to this simplified and meticulous process, Coastline was the largest, single provider of Associate degrees to the Navy in 2008-- 49% of all Associate level degrees awarded throughout the Navy.
One of the most innovative examples of Coastline’s commitment to deliver educational opportunities to deployed servicemembers regardless of their location is the college’s PocketEd PDA Program. As early as April 2003, Coastline Community College began migrating complete digital courses to handheld devices. A recognized leader and innovator in the field of “Anytime, Anywhere” distance learning, Coastline’s PocketEd offerings deliver a combined course which draws upon the best of complete 13 hour Telecourses, full-featured internet courses and interactive CD-ROM courses on a single SDRAM card for delivery through any Windows Mobile OS enabled device. The greatest benefit to military education initiatives, thus far, may be that Coastline supplies the PocketPC to the student at no cost contingent upon the successful completion your course(s). This program motivates and excites students while placing valuable course content and tools in their hands, where other delivery methods are subject to prohibitive constraints of a deployed environment. Coastline feels this is the very essence of 'Anytime, Anywhere' learning. Also, like all Coastline courses, students are never left out on their own. Program dedicated Coastline Military Outreach support staff are available to answer questions, so students are never made to feel shoveled from department to department.