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Employers, Community College Students Still Question Online Degree Credibility
Online Learning Statistics & Education News
By Rachel Wang   
the UMF/Flickr
Online Degree Credibility Questioned by Employers and Community College Students
Traditional degrees still win out over online degrees—at least in employers’ eyes.

A new study titled “Not Yet Sold: What Employers and Community College Students Think About Online Education” revealed that employers are still skeptical about online degree quality.

The report also revealed that community college students have concerns about online learning.

The September 2013 study was released by Public Agenda, a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that focuses on finding solutions for key issues, including higher education, energy issues, healthcare and the national debt.
Trends in E-Learning for Community Colleges Online
Online Learning Statistics & Education News
By Rachel Wang   
Growing Community Colleges Online See New Trends in E-Learning
Online education isn’t just expanding. It’s also getting better. 

Student enrollment is up at community colleges online, and the gap between distance learning and face-to-face student completion rates is closing, according to the latest findings from the Instructional Technology Council (ITC).

In an environment where most colleges are struggling with budget cuts and decreased funding, e-learning continues to shine as a new way to learn.

ITC, which represents nearly 400 institutions that offer distance education courses in the United States, Canada and around the world, surveys its members each year about online learning.

The most recent survey, “Trends in eLearning: Tracking the Impact of eLearning at Community Colleges,” notes that distance education enrollments grew by 6.52 percent from fall 2011 to fall 2012. This stands in contrast to overall student enrollment, which declined by 2.64 percent.

Gender, Ethnicity Impact Online Student Success
Online Learning Statistics & Education News
By Rachel Wang   
UBC Library/Flickr
Gender, Ethnicity May Indicated Online Student Success
Do certain types of students have more trouble adapting to online learning? A new study indicates that gender and ethnicity may impact online student success.

Researchers at Columbia University’s Community College Research Center have uncovered evidence suggesting that male students, younger students, black students and students with lower grade point averages tend to struggle more in online classes than their peers.

Researchers Di Xu and Shanna Smith Jaggars explored a dataset containing nearly 500,000 courses taken by more than 40,000 community and technical college students in Washington State. Their findings are reported in “Adaptability to Online Learning: Differences Across Types of Students and Academic Subject Areas.”

New Study Shows Quality of Online Degrees and Cost Questioned
Online Learning Statistics & Education News
By Rachel Wang   
Novartis AG/Flickr
Researchers Studied Public Perception of Quality of Online Degrees
Only 32 percent of Americans believe that online institutions offer a high-quality education, according to a new study.

The study by the Lumina Foundation and Gallup questioned 1,000 U.S. adults about higher education, including cost and perceived quality of online degrees.

The 2012 report, titled “America’s Call for Higher Education Redesign,” revealed that 10 percent of U.S. adults strongly agree that online colleges and universities offer a quality education, with another 22 percent agreeing. These results are similar to last year’s findings.

Of the respondents, 25 percent disagree or strongly disagree that online colleges and universities offer high-quality education. The majority, at 39 percent, was neutral on the topic.

A traditional college education received the strongest vote of confidence from the American public, with 29 percent strongly agreeing that brick-and-mortar institutes offer high-quality education. Another 47 percent agreed, with 20 percent neutral on the subject. 

Only four percent disagreed or strongly disagreed that traditional colleges and universities offer high-quality education.
MOOCs Growing in Popularity, Suggests Online Learning Survey
Online Learning Statistics & Education News
By Rachel Wang
If You Love Your Computer, You May Enjoy MOOCs
A new study by Babson Survey Research Group reveals that online learning is growing. This stands in contrast to overall enrollment in traditional colleges and universities, which fell (albeit less than .1 percent) for the first time in the survey’s 10-year history.

The study, titled “Changing Courses: Ten Years of Tracking Online Education in the United States,” examines online learning in the U.S.

Babson also surveyed institutional officials for their take on massive open online courses (MOOCs). This is the first time that MOOCs were included in the research study. 

Only 2.6 percent of higher education institutions currently offer a MOOC, with 10 percent planning to add them. The study found that the majority of schools—55 percent—remain undecided on whether to add MOOCs or not. Babson's research also found that institutions with existing online courses and programs make up the majority of schools planning to offer MOOCs.


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