The CITE, a blog published by the National Association of College Stores, takes a look at the intersection of education and technology, highlighting issues that range from course materials to learning delivery to the student experience. Comments, discussion, feedback, and ideas are welcome.

Monday, January 13, 2014

Public Universities Lead the Way Online

The new year has just begun, but two reports have already come out that show public nonprofit universities are well ahead of private institutions when its comes to online education, according to a piece in eCampus News.

Public universities dominate the online education categories in the 2014 U.S. News and World Report college ranking, while a study done by Learning House Inc. and the American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU) found that 14% of American college students responding to the survey take online courses only, but just 20% of those take online courses at private nonprofit schools. The report also said that nearly half of online college students study at public nonprofit universities, with a third receiving an online education at for-profit colleges.

In the study Online Learning at Private Colleges and Universities, 59% of the responding chief academic officers reported that faculty time and effort were key barriers to online education at private institutions.

“Technology has enabled students and faculty members to learn and teach online,” wrote authors of the AASCU report. “Faculty members have learned how to use the technology and how to adapt their courses to online delivery; librarians, bookstore managers, tutors, and advisors have learned how to provide services to remote students who never come to campus; and chairs, deans, and provosts have learned how to develop and market online programs and how to lead faculty members who live elsewhere.

“Private colleges and universities have each responded differently to this technology. Some have rejected it as contrary to their mission to provide personalized, intimate learning environments, while others have embraced the technology with an entrepreneurial spirit.”

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