Skip Navigation

Distance learning

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

Response:

In fall 2015, there were 5,954,121 students enrolled in any distance education courses at degree-granting postsecondary institutions.

Number and percentage of students enrolled in degree-granting postsecondary institutions, by distance education participation, and level of enrollment and control of institution: Fall 2015
Level of enrollment and control of institution Number of students Percent of students
Total No distance education courses Total, any distance education course(s) At least one, but not all, of student's courses are distance education courses Exclusively distance education course(s) Total No distance education courses Total, any distance education course(s) At least one, but not all, of student's courses are distance education courses Exclusively distance education course(s)
Total 19,977,270 14,023,149 5,954,121 3,082,333 2,871,788 100.0 70.2 29.8 15.4 14.4
Level of enrollment
Undergraduate 17,036,778 12,094,521 4,942,257 2,839,348 2,102,909 100.0 71.0 29.0 16.7 12.3
Postbaccalaureate 2,940,492 1,928,628 1,011,864 242,985 768,879 100.0 65.6 34.4 8.3 26.1
Control of institution
   Public 14,568,103 10,492,151 4,075,952 2,619,880 1,456,072 100.0 72.0 28.0 18.0 10.0
   Private nonprofit 4,063,372 3,048,401 1,014,971 346,331 668,640 100.0 75.0 25.0 8.5 16.5
   Private for-profit 1,345,795 482,597 863,198 116,122 747,076 100.0 35.9 64.1 8.6 55.5

NOTE: Degree-granting institutions grant associate's or higher degrees and participate in Title IV federal financial aid programs.

SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics. (2018). Digest of Education Statistics, 2016 (NCES 2017-094), Table 311.15.

Related Tables and Figures:  (Listed by Release Date)

Other Resources:  (Listed by Release Date)