Friday, November 13, 2015

University of Alaska needs to focus on nontraditional students and online learning - Kirk Wickersham, Alaska Dispatch News

During the Great Recession, no state was hit harder than Arizona. Arizona State University took successive double-digit budget cuts. They used that crisis as an opportunity to transform into a university of the 21st Century. Today, ASU advertises “70 bachelor’s and master’s degrees available entirely online” on the Anchorage NPR station. Why? Because they can, and because it works for them. They are apparently getting good Alaskan students. Similarly, the University of Alaska system needs to use our state budget crisis to transform itself into a 21st century university. With the smallest and most geographically dispersed student body in the nation, it needs to commit to standard course offerings, academic calendars, programs and degrees, and centralized, uniform, online delivery. Not in two years, but now.

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