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Distance education registrations on the rise

By Courtenay Griffin

Memorial’s Distance Education and Learning Technologies (DELT) is off to a great start this academic year with increased registrations in both undergraduate and graduate courses. Collective distance education registrations total 5,907 for the fall 2008 semester, an overall 13.1 per cent increase since 2007.

Undergraduate distance education course registrations are up 12.8 per cent in comparison with the same time last year, led by a 41.4 per cent increase in the Faculty of Science, followed by increases in Engineering, Nursing and Arts registrations.

Graduate course registrations have also increased by 15.6 per cent over the same period, led by Human Kinetics and Recreation. Increases in Social Work and Nursing registrations follow, with Education numbers remaining the same.

Ann Marie Vaughan, director of DELT, is thrilled with the increased numbers and indicates that students aren’t the only ones who benefit from distance education course offerings.

“The increase in registrations is evidence that our service as a distance education provider is in demand as it meets the needs of remote students, or students that have to balance busy lifestyles,” Ms. Vaughan said. “But in addition to meeting the needs of students, faculties who partner with us in offering distance courses have noticed gains in enrollment, so it’s a win-win situation.”

One of DELT’s roles is to work with faculty to create high quality, media rich, interactive courses that reflect the innovative reputation of Memorial University, and enhance student engagement and learning. All distance courses are offered online at Memorial University using the learning management system, Desire2Learn, a web based platform whereby students can access course information and materials at any time.

Full undergraduate degrees are available via distance is Business, Arts, Arts (police studies), Nursing (Post RN/BN), Technology and Maritime Studies. Full graduate level programs are also available in Physical Education, Nursing and Education.

Memorial’s distance education capabilities make it the largest among Canadian comprehensive universities. Currently offering over 350 undergraduate and graduate degree courses from 10 faculties and schools, distance education has surpassed 15,000 registrations annually from across the province and around the world.