Since 1921 BYU Independent Study has aimed to bring education to everyone, unless you’re an aspiring college athlete or prospective military candidate.
Thanks to Utah Senate Bill 65, passed in March and sponsored by Rep. Howard A. Stephenson, R-Salt Lake, most students in approved high schools can now take online course to help them graduate.
“The bill was started to give parents choices in education,” said Russ Bryant of BYU Independent Study.
Though the NCAA and military will not approve of these core classes, a decision BYU Independent Study is working to correct, other students could benefit from being able to learn at their own pace.
Bryant said there are two main reasons students would take classes at BYU Independent Study, though these are not the only reasons. The first is credit recovery.
“Credit recovery is when the student may have failed a course,” Bryant said. “They can’t fit the class in, so they have to take it on their own … in order to graduate on time.”
Other students, ones who may want to graduate sooner than the average four years, can participate in credit acquisition.
“Credit acquisition is referring to students who are moving forward faster,” Bryant said. “They are taking our classes to graduate early.”
The Senate Bill allows students to take two credits, or four courses, worth of classes during school hours for free. Over the next five years, that number will increase to six credits of free education, or 12 courses.
“You go to the high school to take the course,” Bryant said, “but you’re taking the courses virtually but not actually in the classroom.”
These courses range from $120 to $200 per course. If a student wanted to complete their whole high school education online, something possible in about five years, it would cost around $6,114.
For more information about BYU Independent Study, go to their website, elearn.byu.edu