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Distance learning

Question:
How many students take distance learning courses at the postsecondary level?

Response:

The 2012 Fall Enrollment component of the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) survey collected data for the first time on enrollment in courses in which instructional content was delivered exclusively through distance education, defined in IPEDS as "education that uses one or more technologies to deliver instruction to students who are separated from the instructor and to support regular and substantive interaction between the students and the instructor synchronously or asynchronously."

In fall 2012, there were 21,147,055 students enrolled in distance education courses at Title IV institutions.

Number and percentage of students enrolled at Title IV institutions, by distance education enrollment status, student level and control of institution: Fall 2012
Selected characteristic Total Number of students enrolled exclusively in distance education courses Percent of students enrolled exclusively in distance education courses Number of students enrolled in some but not all distance education courses Percent of students enrolled in some but not all distance education courses Number of students not enrolled in any distance education courses Percent of students not enrolled in any distance education courses
Total 21,147,055 2,642,158 12.5 2,809,942 13.3 15,694,955 74.2
Student level
Undergraduate1 18,236,340 2,002,815 11.0 2,582,475 14.2 13,651,050 74.9
Graduate 2,910,715 639,343 22.0 227,467 7.8 2,043,905 70.2
Control of institution
   Public 14,996,482 1,249,135 8.3 2,406,908 16.0 11,340,439 75.6
   Private nonprofit 3,975,542 467,528 11.8 259,843 6.5 3,248,171 81.7
   Private for-profit 2,175,031 925,495 42.6 143,191 6.6 1,106,345 50.9

1 Private less-than-4-year non-degree-granting institutions do not report distance education enrollment by degree/certificate-seeking status, hence the 387,713 undergraduate students enrolled at these institutions are included in this row, but not in the detail rows.

NOTE: Title IV institutions are those with a written agreement with the Secretary of Education that allows the institution to participate in any of the Title IV federal student financial assistance programs. Although they are not Title IV eligible, four of the U.S. service academies are included in the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) universe because they are federally funded and open to the public.

SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics. (2014). Enrollment in Distance Education Courses, by State: Fall 2012 (NCES 2014-023).

Related Tables and Figures:  (Listed by Release Date)

Other Resources:  (Listed by Release Date)


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National Center for Education Statistics - http://nces.ed.gov
U.S. Department of Education