Last updated: 31.01.12

College increases online learning courses

A college has revealed that it is increasing the number of online learning courses it is to make available for students at the educational facility.

Northern Marianas College (NMC) president Sharon Hart announced it is teaming up with a company that offers more than 1,800 colleges and universities across the US, reports the Saipan Tribune.

Some 300 online learning courses - which typically last 24 hours - are to be offered by the college over the course of the academic year as a result of the new deal, which took eight months to broker, she added.

Ms Hart noted the deal will have benefits such as "expanding the options for students who are seeking more training opportunities to advance their careers".

She claimed online learning is the fastest growing area of higher education in the world, adding:  "So we are making sure that we are providing this opportunity to those who want to avail of distant educational courses."

The president also pointed out the college is aiming to reach 1,000 e-learning courses by the end of the academic year, with Commonwealth students among those being targeted.

Barbara Merfalen, NMC's dean of Academic Services, stated the college has been able to increase its online courses offered by 70 per cent over the course of the last 12 months.

Around a third of the fee charged for e-learning courses at NMC are set to go to the college itself, with the rest of the money going to the provider of the education.

Earlier in the month, it was revealed that Westfield State University has been recognised for offering the best online learning-based bachelor's degrees in the US in a report published by US News and World Report, with the Massachusetts educational facility ranked top of the list with an overall faculty score of 82 points.