The rate of growth in South Dakota public universities’ distance-learning courses slowed last year, a report presented this week to the state Board of Regents shows.
An unduplicated headcount of nearly 22,000 students enrolled in distance courses the last academic year, an 8.5 percent increase that was slightly lower than the 13 percent gain the previous year.
Still, last year’s growth does augment strong five-year gains across the South Dakota system of more than 65 percent, regents were told.
Regents executive director Jack Warner said that total enrollment, average enrollment, total credit hours, and average credit hours in distance education have all increased each year since 2008-09.
The average distance education student in South Dakota is an undergraduate (75.5 percent), part-time enrolled (69.9 percent), and female (64 percent). A majority of distance-based students are from South Dakota, although out-of-state students have come to represent an increasing share of those being served.
Warner said most undergraduates take distance courses as a supplement to other face-to-face coursework. Graduate students were more likely to enroll exclusively via distance education.
Source: Education News