Taking an online course from the main campus in Rochester: a student perspective

June 8, 2020

Though the Spring semester is long gone, the learning at RIT Croatia does not stop. Our Dubrovnik and Zagreb students have the opportunity to choose online courses led and delivered by the faculty from our main campus in Rochester. The classes are running in 3 sets: from May 14th - August 5th; from May 14th - June 24th, and from June 29th - August 5th. Some of our students decided take this opportunity and we have talked to one of them, Matko Piškor, our IT / Web and Mobile Computing student, who shared his overall student experience at RIT.

Enrolling in RIT's Cyber Security Policy and Law course

„It has been 3 and a half years, since I enrolled in January 2017", says Matko. „Currently, I am working full time at a company I did my last co-op at, and where I have been working for the past year and a half. My personal goal is to keep developing myself in terms of technology stacks I am most interested in and continuing my career at a job I currently have."

Matko is grateful for the opportunity to take overloads and Maymesters to shorten his studies, and decided to take on this opportunity as well. „I enrolled in the Cyber Security Policy and Law course, instructed by Prof. Shane Crounse. The course is about, as the title suggests, cyber security from the legal perspective. I believe it will be interesting to see the IT-related topics from a different perspective."

An interesting point about this course is that is does not have synchronous classes, which means no virtual presentations and „live" course delivery by the instructor. Instead, students receive the syllabus with all the course requirements, reading material, video materials and course assignments. The instructor is always there for online office hours. This type of learning does bring its advantages – when you know what you are expected to do, and you are given all the instruction and course material you need, you can plan your time as it suits you best. The class is not too big, 17 students and „judging by their names, I am the only one who is not from the main campus", says Matko.

Working with colleagues from the US and Dubrovnik campuses has been a very eye-opening experience

Looking at this overall student learning experience at RIT Croatia, Matko did emphasize one course: „The most interesting project, by far, has been the Senior Project under the leadership of RIT Croatia's faculty member Martin Žagar. The opportunity to work with colleagues from Rochester and Dubrovnik campuses respectively, has been a very eye-opening experience." The Senior Project that Matko is referring to is taken in the final year of study and includes working on a real-life business problem for clients from different business industries. It also includes working in international teams where students from different campuses look into defined business problem of a client to develop and provide the optimal solution. As Matko assumed a role of a project manager, this experience helped him develop soft skills which are in high demand: „This allowed me to develop my leadership and communication skills with students from different cultures. The topic of the Senior Project - in broader terms Smartcity and Internet of Things - is very familiar to me since I do that for a living, and it allowed me to transfer the knowledge learned outside of the school to the school assignments. Usually, it is another way around so this was an interesting perspective."

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