Why Online?

Robert Griffiths, Associate Vice President of Distance Education at Ohio State

When online learning emerged as an opportunity, university leaders knew it wasn’t a replacement of the outstanding instruction delivered in lecture halls and classrooms across our campuses. Rather, an Ohio State online education was adopted in ways to advance the university’s vision to become the model 21st-century public, land grant, research, urban, community-engaged institution.

As it was in December 2012 when the university created the Office of Distance Education and eLearning, our approach to online education curriculum is driven by our faculty and in response to our students.

We originally saw an increase in completely online programming, mainly at the graduate and professional masters level, but Ohio State also offers several degree completion programs. More recently faculty approved an associate’s degree online, as well as are currently reviewing proposals for online certificates. This term, we’re enrolling nearly 640 online programs students across 17 programs, all of which can be found at online.osu.edu.

We’ve also seen tremendous change in the high school to college transition with the inclusion of College Credit Plus. Ohio State, led by Arts and Sciences, responded by providing opportunities for highly qualified students to gain Ohio State credit through online sections of high demand general education courses. While Ohio State has more than 100 online sections for GEs, enrolling approximately 10,000 students, 37 of these courses have been specially designed for College Credit Plus.

As Ohio State continues its university-level strategic planning conversations, we’re hearing about more opportunities to place minors online, using data to identify potential online sections to support a students’ time to degree, finding opportunities to students who may be place-bound to access Ohio State courses online, creating opportunities for students to extend their education abroad or other on-site experiences for longer while not losing momentum in their course work, and preparing our students to be experienced and effective in working in organizations that leverage technology for their basic functioning.

As we reflect on the past four years of ODEE and look ahead to the future, the value of Ohio State’s education still revolves around our faculty and the knowledge they share in challenging and provocative lessons, and ODEE is proud to bridge the gap between the traditional classroom and the flexible formats today’s students need and desire.

We exist to support our academic mission, so bring us your ideas and let’s partner to meet the opportunities a technology-empowered education can bring.