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How CYPHER ensures education continuity in times of disaster

University of Batangas Philippines
University of Batangas

University of Batangas is a private educational institution that aims to improve the Philippines’ society through knowledge, values, and skills. The University promotes moral and spiritual development. Their quality programs serve a broad community. Their mission is to enable students to participate in a global, technological, and research-driven environment after graduation.

Find out how teachers and students at the University of Batangas use CYPHER to continue their studies regardless of the challenges that might arise.

When did you choose CYPHER?

Dr. Hernando B. Perez, University President: We adopted CYPHER in 2017, to assist our teachers in delivering the teaching materials. We were probably among the first educational institutions in the province of Batangas to use a learning management system (LMS). Little did we know that we were going to make full use of CYPHER later on. In January 2020, the Taal volcano erupted. As a result, many of our teachers and students were evacuated. Our problem was: How are we going to continue teaching our students?

What challenges did you face before implementing CYPHER?

Dr. Lolita F. Tegon, Concurrent Assistant Vice President for Academic Affairs: The disaster due to the volcanic eruption followed by the Covid-19 pandemic, led to the full integration of CYPHER in all grade levels. CYPHER prepared us to face the unexpected challenges of remote learning.

Dr. Hernando B. Perez, University President: If it wasn’t for CYPHER, we wouldn’t have been able to continue teaching. We are grateful that we discovered CYPHER. We are assisting about 14,000 students via the platform. Many other schools in Batangas had to close down because of the pandemic but we continued teaching.

What do teachers like about CYPHER?

Dr. Mayling I. Capuno, Dean-Citec, Faculty Member-Graduate School: My journey with CYPHER is a breath of fresh air. I have always been in search of and trying various open-source online learning platforms to supplement my learning delivery. There were times when I needed to attend important meetings and seminars, so I had to adopt some form of tech to avoid compromising my classes.

CYPHER paved the way to a better online learning experience with its easy-to-navigate user interface. Even a beginner can navigate the platform, configure and customize its portal with little help. Those who are not new to online learning platforms will be very happy when they get to know CYPHER.

What CYPHER features do teachers like most?

Dr. Lolita F. Tegon, Concurrent Assistant Vice President for Academic Affairs: Teachers are provided with many tools to make their classes more engaging and fun for students. Adding interesting elements to the lessons encourages our kids not only to learn more but also to stay motivated throughout the entire learning process.

Dr. Mayling I. Capuno, Dean-Citec, Faculty Member-Graduate School: I have always been a believer in collaboration among my colleagues and my students as well. CYPHER has instant messaging which makes it easier for me to connect to my students in real-time. I can just post a curriculum framing question and my students respond simultaneously without shyness or fear of rejection.

I appreciate how easily I can create quizzes and assessments and share them with my colleagues who are teaching the same subjects. This way, we create an environment of peer and professional collaboration towards more standardized teaching materials.

What are the students’ favorite features?

Renz Contreras, 2nd year BS Industrial Engineering: For me, it makes learning more efficient and effective because it does not only exercise the asynchronous classes but also develops independent learning during those classes. It provides many options for students who are struggling with their internet connections by providing and uploading video lectures that they can play at their own pace, at their own convenient time.

For me, the best CYPHER feature is the section where it shows your scores and progress in a class, where you can monitor which aspect or lesson you need to improve at as well as to keep you on track of the course subject. This is really nice because as a student I have access to my scores and this will guide me to see where I am lacking.

What has your experience with CYPHER been?

Dr. Lolita F. Tegon, Concurrent Assistant Vice President for Academic Affairs: I have been using CYPHER for years already as an administrator, as a teacher, and as a parent and I’m really happy to share that it has been a great experience to use one of the best platforms for e-learning.

I am really pleased about its ability to support adaptive learning and automation. The integration of other apps such as Google Meet and Panopto is so essential for teachers. Its ability to be accessed from any device, anytime, anywhere, brings a lot of convenience to the users, especially to the kids, teachers, and parents.

Finally, I can say that having CYPHER takes our teaching and learning at the University of Batangas, elementary department, to the next level.

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