Regional Distance Education Centers
Regional Distance Education Centers are a key part of STOU’s ability to maintain contact with students. They ensure that though STOU instruction is self-guided, students are not left without vital personal contact while pursuing their chosen study programs. There are a total of ten STOU Regional Distance Education Centers located throughout the country. These centers, which are owned, operated and staffed by STOU, serve as students main access point for face-to-face educational interaction and services that are customary at conventional universities. Centers contain libraries that include broad book collections, archived broadcasts and course materials, other audiovisual materials, internet access and computer resources. The conference rooms at the centers also function as gathering points for face-to-face instruction or student collaboration.
Other Service Points
Provincial Study Centers
These centers – typically in the main secondary school of every province – facilitate various educational services, such as orientation for new students, tutorial sessions, academic advising, examinations and dissemination of university news and information.
At STOU Corners in all provincial libraries, students and the general public can peruse STOU course materials, as well as learn more about STOU.
Special Study Centers
The university works with government agencies to provide students with opportunities specialized training, laboratory study and practical experience in certain subjects, such as nursing and agriculture.
Internet technologies and telecommunications
The STOU website is a space where students can access educational media, participate in forums and occasional webcasts with their teachers and classmates, read about STOU news and developments, and more.
Communities and social networks
As the traditional center of intellectual life in Thai society, communities and villages are also very important in supporting the educational work of STOU students. The knowledge and experience provided to students through these informal but crucial social structures are extremely beneficial to STOU students and learners.
Library and Information Services are provided by the Office of Documentation and Information at three levels:
The STOU main library is located at the university campus and provides library and information services to university staff, students and the general public. The library collects books, periodicals, reference databases, archival and audiovisual materials that support teaching and research at the university. The library has also developed a range of electronic library materials and services, including e-books and e-journals. In addition to managing the circulation of its collections, the STOU library offers reference services, document delivery services, circulation, interlibrary loan and current awareness services.
The office provides library and information services at the regional level through ten STOU Regional Distance Education Centers. In addition, two Graduate Distance Educational Resource Centers have been set up in Songkhla and Prachuab Khiri Khan provinces to provide research resources for STOU graduate students.
The university has established STOU Corners in libraries across the country, as well as STOU Corners in three corrective institutions for inmates who have obtained permission to enroll in STOU. STOU Corners are resource centers offering STOU library and educational media lending and reference services to students and the local community.
Counseling and Student Activities
- Guidance for Prospective Students
- Academic Guidance for Current Students
- Orientation for New Students
- Educational and Professional Counseling Services
- Graduate Counseling Services
- Student Activities
To supplement curriculum activities, the university promotes and endorses the establishment of student clubs. The prime purpose of the students clubs is to provide the opportunity for students to meet one another, share views and study experiences, and participate in collaborative academic and social activities.
Practical Experience Programs
Professional Experience Activities/Graduate Enrichment Programs
These required pre-graduation activities are arranged by each STOU school to help prepare students to enter their chosen professions. The five-day sessions, organized for either bachelor’s or master’s students, are held at the main STOU campus in Nonthaburi. Besides offering practical guidance on how best to apply the knowledge they have gained, the activities give students a chance to spend time with their fellow classmates, most of whom have not met each other previously.
Other Practice or Training
For some course blocks, students are required to undergo practical training or observation in laboratories, businesses or institutions.
Academic Services via Radio, TV and Satellite
As indicated in the section on instructional media, STOU has made great progress in bringing lifelong education to the Thai people through its educational radio and television programs. It is estimated that over 5 million people listen to and watch these programs yearly.
Twenty-minute radio programs covering topics in a wide variety of courses are broadcast by the throughout the country. Many course blocks also have supplementary television programs, which are a half hour each. These are regularly broadcast on public television according to schedules mailed to the students. In 2012, STOU greatly expanded its television reach with the opening of STOU Channel, the university’s own C-band television station broadcasting 24 hours a day. All of these options are free and open to everyone regardless of whether they are enrolled in STOU. If viewing/listening times are inconvenient, the programs are also available on the university website as Media on Demand.