BYU-Pathway Worldwide continues to be strategically focused, like the initial BYU-Idaho Pathway program, on providing educational opportunities for the “hidden many” (the thousands of Church members throughout the world who have, for a variety of reasons, not had a chance to complete their education). In addition, BYU-Pathway now has a global focus on providing online educational opportunities everywhere The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is organized.
BYU-Pathway accomplishes its strategic objectives in these different ways:
- BYU-Pathway has primary responsibility for the EnglishConnect and PathwayConnect programs where students develop English language proficiency and life and professional skills to prepare them for further education and employment opportunities.
- BYU-Pathway maintains an online web portal to provide essential student services not only for their pre-matriculation students but also for students enrolled in online certificates and degrees at BYU-Idaho and other CES institutions.
- BYU-Pathway provides these students with access to online courses that are developed and delivered by BYU-Idaho and other accredited CES institutions. While BYU-Pathway is not an accredited university, they provide unique services that streamline the online student user experience and enhance the quality and reach of the online offerings of CES institutions of higher education.
BYU-Pathway Worldwide Curriculum Structure and Delivery Standards
BYU-Pathway Worldwide is responsible for establishing online standards for the courses, certificates, and programs they present to ensure that each one will help meet the needs of online students around the world. Additionally, they partner with Welfare and Self-Reliance of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to obtain market research regarding strong employment trends and to inform discussions about the online certificate and degree offerings.
Certificate-first Degree Structure
BYU-Pathway Worldwide requires a stackable certificate degree structure as the standard for all online degree programs available through their web portal. With this model, online students:
- Begin completing courses in an introductory certificate
- Gain highly employable job skills
This approach also:
- Drives value into the earliest phase of a student’s educational career
- Increases student confidence
- Quickly improves their employment opportunities
As students complete each certificate, they achieve an important milestone in their educational journey, improve their employability, and increase their likelihood of continuing their education. This “certificate-first approach” significantly helps BYU-Idaho online students who work part-time, who are supporting families, or who are at a higher risk of dropping out of school before they earn a bachelor’s degree.
BYU-Pathway Online Delivery Standards
To help meet the needs of online students across the globe, BYU-Pathway Worldwide has also established the following online delivery standards for the certificates, degrees, and courses it makes available from BYU-Idaho and other CES institutions.
- Employability—All online certificates must have strong employment opportunities and marketability.
- High Student Demand—The BYU-Pathway model requires scalable offerings and high fill rates to keep costs low.
- Consistent Formats—The stackable certificate model helps ensure that students receive employable credentials during each phase of their educational journey.
- Design Standards—Each online course must adhere to common design standards. This assures that all the courses in a student’s program will have a common structure, look, and feel.
- Job Skills—The curriculum focuses on job readiness and skill development. At its best, a program’s outcomes, assessments, and learning activities will assure the mastery of work-related skills.
- Digital Course Materials—Course materials must be available electronically with a target of zero cost to students.
BYU-Pathway Worldwide Services to BYU-Idaho Students
BYU-Pathway Worldwide will also provide support services for online students as they begin the PathwayConnect program, complete gateway courses, and eventually enroll in a BYU-Idaho certificate or degree. BYU-Pathway’s systems are currently being designed to optimize the online student experience.
When students graduate from PathwayConnect and matriculate into a BYU-Idaho online degree program, it is anticipated that they will continue to utilize BYU-Pathway Worldwide’s online systems to ensure streamlined user experience and seamless transition. Students will be able to:
- Identify areas of interest
- Select their first certificate
- Register for BYU-Idaho classes using BYU-Pathway Worldwide’s online registration tools
When students have questions, BYU-Pathway will also provide live-chat support and advising services. These online support tools and services are currently being developed and will soon be available to provide BYU-Idaho online degree students with a high-quality online user experience.