FAYETTE, Iowa (October 23, 2008) - Upper Iowa University recently reorganized its distance education programs, combining its online and independent study modalities into one centralized program, now called the Center for Distance Education.
Celebrating its 35th anniversary, UIU's Independent Study Program was started in 1973 from an incentive through the Carnegie Commission challenge to American Colleges and Universities. The year-round, paper/email based program is designed around written assignments and proctored exams and offers a full range of undergraduate majors.
In 1999, Upper Iowa started the virtual classroom with its Online Program that allows students to attend classes any time of the day or night. This nationally- recognized program offers six, eight-week terms each year for students seeking undergraduate and graduate degrees.
UIU's Center for Distance Education currently serves over 2,500 students in 49 states and several countries. Over 300 adjunct faculty teach for the distance education programs.
According to Interim Senior Vice President for the Academic Extension, Dr. Tim Hunt, the restructuring will provide greater efficiencies for faculty and staff, which will in turn improve learning opportunities for students.
To achieve these greater efficiencies, coordinator positions have been added to oversee key operational functions, such as recruiting, advising and financial aid. Additional positions are being planned to oversee corporate and military partnerships, as well as administrative and technical support. A national search is underway to identify an Executive Director of Distance Education to lead this unit. Meanwhile, Barb Schultz has been promoted to Associate Executive Director of Distance Education.
"We feel the timing is right for this reorganization of our distance education program in order to maintain academic excellence and exceptional service to our students," said Schultz. "It will also allow us to expand our outreach, such as Upper Iowa's recent collaboration with the Navy College Program Distance Learning Partnership."
To learn more about Upper Iowa University and its distance learning program, go to www.uiu.edu.
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