A reading teacher at Cerritos College who offers most of his classes over the Internet has been named Teacher of the Year by a group of educators who instruct disabled students.
Associate professor Michael L. Bettino has been invited to Oakland later this month to receive the award at the annual meeting of the California Assn. of Post-Secondary Educators of the Disabled.
Organization President Inga Pelzer said the award committee was impressed to learn that Bettino's students can interact and turn in weekly assignments through their own personal computers.
Bettino's students are required to come to class only for midterm and final examinations. But since he considers online activity to be a form of class participation, Bettino said his Internet courses are no less rigorous that the conventional classroom experience.
"Teaching online gives my students the opportunity to work on assignments at their own pace and without having to be physically present," Bettino said. He added that nearly a quarter of his students have a disability that makes the Internet option particularly useful.