MU to invest $2.5 million in online education

Sep 4, 2012

The University of Missouri has decided to invest $2.5 million into its online education program to better cater to students’ needs.

The main reason for expansion? To reach out to new groups of students, according to Jim Spain, vice provost for undergraduate studies.

“We’re targeting students who can’t physically come to Columbia," he says. "So, it’s an effort to improve and increase accessibility.”

MU spokesperson Christian Basi says Mizzou Online will implement more degrees where students can do all their coursework online -- without ever entering a classroom.

“We have experienced record-breaking freshmen classes," Basi says. "We’ve experienced soaring enrollment growth overall. We’ve also seen a high demand for a lot of our degree programs on campus and we do not have currently a lot of those degree programs being offered solely online.”

Mizzou Online is looking to add 10 to 15 complete undergraduate or graduate degree programs by 2014. This investment will partially be paid for by reserves stored up by distant education programs over the past two decades. Basi says more than 9,500 students enrolled in online classes last year – a 12 percent increase -- which also raised more revenue for this initiative.