Distance Education from an Undergraduate Perspective

A recent NCES  analysis uncovered that 20% of all undergraduates had taken at least one distance education class during the 2007-2008 academic year. These findings surpassed those observed in both 1999 to 2000 which was at 8%, as well as in 2003 and 2004, which was observed at 16%. The study takes into consideration distance education as defined as a course taken for credits that didn’t utilize in-person correspondence, rather was primarily delivered by way of interactive audio, videoconferencing, pre-recorded instructional videos, webcasts, CD-ROM or DVD, or a computer-based systems via the Internet.

This statistics report investigates undergraduates’ enrollment in distance education courses and degree programs by studentcharacteristics and changes in studies over this eight-year timeframe to determine the following:

  • What percentage of 2007–08 undergraduates reported enrollment in a stance education course and a distance education degree program and have these percentages changed over time?
  • Did 2007–08 under-graduates’ reported participation in a distance education course or degree program vary by field of study, degree sought, or type of institution?
  • Did 2007–08 under-graduates’ reported participation in a distance education course or degree program differ by age, dependents, marital status, work responsibilities, or student disability status?

What were some of the key findings?

  • Participation in distance education courses was commonly found among undergraduates who were enrolled in a public 2-year college. Participation in a distance education degree program was most common among undergraduates attending for-profit institutions.
  • Students studying computer science and those in business courses were at higher rates in both distance education classes (27 % and 24%, respectively, vs. 20%) and distance education degree programs (8 % and 6%, respectively, vs. 4%).

To uncover more information and the entirety of key findings visit, http://nces.ed.gov/pubsearch/pubsinfo.asp?pubid=2012154 to view the full report.

Source: Learning at a Distance: Undergraduate Enrollment in Distance Education Courses and Degree Programs by National Center for Education Statistics: Institute for Education Sciences. October 5, 2011.

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