Online Programs are the Key to the Future of Higher Education

Jennie Kroeger

Online Programs are the Key to the Future of Higher Education

With recent advancements in technology, distance education has become readily available to students in most major universities across the country. Many higher ed administrators tout the ample benefits of online degree programs.

Distance Education Trends

According to Babson Survey Research Group, the number of college students enrolled in an online program in 2015 was up 3.9 percent since the previous year (source). This finding highlights the national trend of offering distance education courses in institutions of higher learning for a range of programs, including a master's degree in education. You will notice that public institutions have the greatest number of distance education students. About 38 percent of these students are graduate-level and enrolled in online master's programs. Even though higher education enrollments are declining, a definite movement toward online degree programs shows that online programs are the key to the future of higher education.

The Shift from Traditional to Online

To produce graduates with a competitive edge, colleges are developing online programs that attract the best students. If you are interested in trying an online course because of your access to the web, you are not alone; many people find that access to the web supports their learning needs. Taking online courses via computers and mobile devices is now a popular option universities are adopting due to market demands. There is a decided increase in working adults who desire to learn new skills for career-building. Out of convenience - due to work or family - many of these adults opt for part-time schedules that allow for ample extracurricular time. For instance, an online master's in education allows current teachers to advance their careers by taking courses online at their own pace while continuing to work an earn an income. Colleges that provide online programs, like the Florida State University College of Education, are defining how we live and learn. , .

The Future of Online Learning

Online programs are always improving. With changes to accreditation and other standards, online programs are becoming better organized and more useful to students. Another area of change is the design and development of better learning technologies. Over the next 10 years, you will observe how colleges like FSU are converting traditional course formats into online delivery so that more learning can occur in cyberspace. In addition, you will see that instructors infuse their curriculum with powerful content. No longer will classes involve only lectures. Instructors will plan online lessons around storytelling, exploration, and real-life experiences, using modern devices, like tablets and smartphones. So, if you're looking for an online program today, chances are you will find one that is not only engaging but also forward-thinking in its technological approach. Learn More About Our Online Master's Programs