Online education on the rise at Iowa’s public universities

by Vanessa Miller, The Gazette

Iowa’s public universities collectively have continued to increase distance education offerings, driving up enrollment in courses and programs available online and aligning with Board of Regents goals. The University of Iowa, Iowa State University, and University of Northern Iowa all offer both noncredit and credit-bearing courses online in hopes of extending the campuses “beyond their physical boundaries to meet the needs of state, regional, national, and international audiences.” The Board of Regents lists “increasing distance education opportunities” as one of its strategic goals, and the universities are reaching their targetted goals, according to a recent progress report and a distance education report discussed Wednesday at a Board of Regents meeting. According to the new regent report, total duplicated distance-education enrollment in credit courses across the three campuses reached 65,428 in the academic year that ended last summer. That was 9.9 percent — or 5,886 — more than the prior year.

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