Randolph College introduces ‘TAKE2’ model where students take 2 courses during 7-week sessions

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LYNCHBURG, Va. (WFXR) — Starting Fall 2021, Randolph College plans to implement a unique academic model under the name of “TAKE2,” which will allow students to take two classes at a time during seven-week sessions.

“Believed to be the only permanent one of its kind in the nation, Randolph’s new TAKE2 program was designed by faculty to help students have a successful, enjoyable, and rewarding academic experience,” the college announced on Wednesday, April 29.

According to school officials, each semester will consist of two seven-week sessions with two classes each rather than having students take four or five classes for an entire semester or breaking the semester into three or four sections with alternating time periods and course loads.

In addition, in order to allow more time for extracurricular activities, athletics, community engagement, a cognitive break to study and prepare for classes, field trips, and jobs and internships, Randolph College says no classes will be held on Wednesdays.

“In 2018, our faculty decided to question the usual model,” says Gary Dop, an English professor and member of the TAKE2 implementation committee. “We asked why everyone does the same old thing and what would happen if we designed a model that optimizes learning and meaningful living.”

According to the college, Randolph’s faculty members spent almost two years studying, researching, and planning for the TAKE2 model in order to better address student needs.

“In this rapidly changing world, colleges must be able to shift and adapt to better meet the needs of our students,” says Randolph President Bradley W. Bateman. “TAKE2 provides us with the opportunity to create a more meaningful and effective educational experience for our students. This is an innovative and distinctive approach that will revolutionize how small, liberal arts schools approach learning, and I’m proud of our faculty for their insight, talent, and forward-thinking.”

“There’s a shift in higher education, and we can’t keep delivering the same format in the same way. The delivery system has to change to fit where the students are coming from,” says Amanda Rumore, a biology professor and member of the implementation committee.

By allowing students to focus on two topics at a time rather than spreading their attention across four or more courses, school officials say TAKE2 will improve learning and offer greater opportunities for students both inside and outside the classroom.

“But a student will learn better if each of their courses are taken over a shorter amount of time in a model that allows them to fully experience the value and depth of each course,” Dop says. “Also, students will have even more access to their professors, who will be teaching only one or two courses at a time, and to our support teams focused on helping the student be successful and get the most out of their college education. This is an experience that sets students up to thrive.”

Randolph College already planned to introduce its new model to the public in Spring 2020 when the COVID-19 pandemic moved most schools to temporary online learning, the news release states. In fact, during this time, school officials say it has become increasingly clear to them how much students need a program like this during these modern times.

“We believe this more intense focus on fewer courses at a time is an approach that will provide our students with far more advantages than they would have with a typical curriculum model,” says Carl Girelli, provost of Randolph University. “Randolph’s innovative TAKE2 curriculum is a better design for the way students learn and live—both in today’s world and tomorrow’s.”

To learn more about the TAKE2 program, visit Randolph College’s website.

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