December 17, 2008
WVU Parkersburg to offer on-line Associate degrees.
CONTACT: Dr. Rhonda Richards, executive dean for academic affairs, 304-424-8242.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
West Virginia University at Parkersburg will begin offering four on-line Associate degrees in the spring semester.
The regionally accredited degrees will be delivered completely on line. They include the Associate of Applied Science in Business Technology; the Associate of Applied Science in Multi-Craft Technology; the Associate of Science in Business Administration, and the Associate of Arts.
College officials note that growing enrollment in its distance learning courses has driven the development of the on-line degrees.
“As we have continued to experience increased student interest in the availability of on-line courses, the natural ‘next’ progression for the institution is to deliver degrees completely on line,” explained Dr. Rhonda Richards, executive dean of academic affairs.
In the summer, WVU Parkersburg increased its on-line classes significantly so that one-third of its summer courses were online or a blend of online and limited classroom sessions. Nearly half of the college’s summer students enrolled in at least one on-line class.
"Our enrollment trends indicate that students appreciate the convenience of taking on-line courses on their time, at their pace and in their location of choice," Dr. Richards noted.
Development of the on-line degree curricula was one step in the implementation of the distance learning delivery. Establishing a virtual college experience was also a key component.
“Students will have access to college support systems ‘from start to finish’ to assist them in being successful in their virtual experience,” Dr. Richards said.
Student services, including registration, financial aid, advising and learning assistance, will be available on line in support of the distance learning degrees.
“All of these elements are designed to give students the opportunity to access success through on-line delivery of these associate degrees,” she said.
“For many students, this will allow them to pursue a degree from home or work when it best fits their schedule,” she added.
In that the degrees are being offered on line, it raises the likelihood that students other than those in the Mid-Ohio Valley will also take advantage of their availability.
“We look forward to introducing a global community of students to WVU Parkersburg through these distance learning degrees,” Dr. Richards noted.
Additional information about the on-line degrees is available at http://www.wvup.edu/on-line_degrees.htm
WVU Parkersburg Spring semester classes begin Jan. 12. The college campus will be closed for the holiday break between Dec. 24 and Jan. 4.