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Washington State Opens Online Degrees to New High School Graduates

Beginning this fall Washington State University will accept freshmen into its four-year fully online degree programs. Previously, the Pullman institution has offered its online-only classes to adult students who wanted to finish their degrees. The new policy will allow even applicants newly graduated from high school to take their courses entirely online.

However, unlike other online-only programs recently announced at other universities, this one will retain its higher tuition fee structure for non-resident students. In the coming academic year, a full-time resident of Washington State will pay $4,296 for undergraduate tuition; a non-resident will pay $6,315.

"There are ... many people who never got started on a college degree who need the flexibility we offer and are willing to put in the hard work to earn their degree from [Washington State U]," said Muriel Oaks, dean for the Center for Distance and Professional Education. "We anticipate this option will be most attractive to students who are already familiar with online learning and other less traditional K-12 experiences such as home schooling."

Undergraduate degrees offered in the newly expanded program include business administration, criminal justice, human development, humanities, and social sciences.

"Using the technology is not an issue for most recent high school graduates. Having the discipline to schedule coursework can be a challenge though," said Dave Cillay, associate dean of the Center and director of instructional design.

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a former senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal, Campus Technology and Spaces4Learning.

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