Distance Learning | News

California State U Opens Online Courses Across 23 Campuses

California State University (CSU) will allow students to take online courses from any of its 23 campuses beginning this fall in an effort to alleviate overcrowding of certain courses.

Thirty-six courses are currently available for full-time students, though each student is limited to one course each term for the time being.

The program, which included the development of a concurrent enrollment system, was funded through $17 million in state money that was specifically marked for online education. An additional $10 million will go toward further development of the enrollment system and dozens more classes.

"It is important to California's future that students have the opportunity to continue their education and achieve a bachelor's degree," said Ephraim P. Smith, CSU executive vice chancellor and chief academic officer, in a prepared statement.  "We continue to face unprecedented demand for CSU programs with limited space available — renewed state investment is critical to closing that gap."

The move comes on the heels of a bill introduced to the California Senate earlier this year by Darrell Steinberg that would require CSU, the University of California, and California Community Colleges to grant credit for completion of approved massive open online courses (MOOCs).

That bill has been put on hold and, though it faced strong opposition from faculty around the state, it was the increased funding rather than the threat of legislation that led to the creation of the new program, according to a report in the Contra Costa Times.

The California State University is the largest four-year university system in the United States. It serves approximately 436,000 students at 23 campuses with 44,000 faculty and staff. Visit calstate.edu for more information.

About the Author

Joshua Bolkan is the multimedia editor for Campus Technology and THE Journal. He can be reached at jbolkan@1105media.com.

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