The growth in online education has exploded in recent years. Every year since 2002, the rate of college students taking online courses has increased at a compound rate of 13% annually, while traditional higher education enrollments have increased only 2% annually during this same time. Over 5.6 million students took at least one online course in the fall of 2009 (Allen and Seaman 2010). When these courses were first made available, most of the suppliers were for profit universities. Faculty in traditional institutions often viewed online education as a product for purchase, where students could buy course credits with less rigorous demands in the scope of work required and in assessment. The biggest change in recent years is the number of traditional universities that have joined the ranks of online education. Faculty senates continue to vote to set criteria for online courses so that the standards of the institution offering the courses remain high and the online offerings do not somehow tarnish the reputation of the university. Yet administrators, learning scientists, instructional designers, and students from all over the globe continue to seek online course offerings in increasing numbers, for a variety of reasons.
This article is from the Accounting Instructors’ Report, an electronic journal that provides teaching tips and insights to those who teach accounting and other business courses.
Martha S. Doran, PhD, CPA(az), San Diego State University
Gary W. Doran