Prescott, AZ (PRWEB) December 14, 2006
Northcentral University (http://4000.ncu.edu/) a leader in 100% online learning and education programs, announced today that its enrollment has passed 4,000 Learners. This figure represents a growth rate of just over 60 percent during the first ten months of 2006. Based on a recent survey of online colleges and universities featured in U.S. News and World Report, accredited online university NCU ranked among the top ten schools in graduate-level business students at nearly 1,900 and among the top 15 in graduate-level education students.
"Our continued growth is a statement to the positive momentum NCU is sustaining and attracting new Learners through innovation, flexibility and affordability," commented Dr. Claudia Santin, NCU President, in a staff meeting to celebrate the 4,000 Learner milestone. She added to these comments later, noting that "NCU already has more Ph.D. students enrolled in the School of Business and Technology Management than any other university--online or brick-and-mortar."
Online Learning Growth Surpasses Higher Education as a Whole
A number of external and institutional factors combine to explain Northcentral University's remarkable growth (http://4000.ncu.edu/). Online education programs and distance education is far outpacing the growth of higher education as a whole. Indeed, growth at traditional "brick and mortar" schools has been flat in recent years, while online higher education enrollments have been increasing at an annualized rate of 15 percent. Eduventures (http://www.eduventures.com), a higher education research firm, has determined that public acceptance of college degrees earned online also is on the rise. A recent survey found that 62 percent of employers now view online learning as equal to or better than face to face classroom learning.
The increase in enrollment at accredited online university NCU surpasses by a wide margin the growth trend in online and distance education in general. "We believe that a primary reason for NCU's growth is the satisfaction level of NCU's students with educational quality and support services," Santin said. "We are also free of the institutional overhead that blended traditional/distance schools bring to the online marketplace, allowing NCU to keep our tuition costs substantially lower than the going rate."
NCU Survey Results
A nationwide survey of online learners by Noel-Levitz, completed in May 2006, found that Northcentral University Learners rated the school very highly in the three primary factors that encourage online education programs enrollment, each involving convenience and adaptability to work schedules. NCU participants in the Noel-Levitz survey also reported very high satisfaction on items related to the institution's academic rigor and contribution to career goals. Perhaps most surprising, in the context of distance education, is the high level of peer interaction NCU Learners reported in the survey.
One other area where respondents ranked accredited online university NCU was its responsiveness to individual needs. In this area, NCU president Dr. Claudia Santin has broken new ground, creating the position of Research Professor. These key faculty members work directly with doctoral candidates, helping shepherd them through the difficult and often lonely dissertation process.
By helping doctoral Learners frame their research and approach their dissertation, and subsequently assisting the dissertation committees with their methodological and statistical expertise, the research professors make the entire doctoral process a richer and less stressful experience. This also provides the NCU doctoral graduates with the kind of academic satisfaction that leads them to recommend NCU to other students and colleagues. And perhaps nothing attracts new Learners better than satisfied alumni.
About Northcentral University
Founded in 1996 and headquartered in Prescott, Arizona USA, Northcentral University (NCU) (http://www.ncu.edu/) is a private, 100% online institution serving adult learners worldwide. Learners seeking higher education from a premier university experience the convenience of 100% online distance learning and NCU's flexible term format designed to meet the needs of busy professionals. NCU focuses on customizing academic programs to each Learner's personal and professional interests, and NCU Faculty Mentors provide one-on-one guidance to ensure academic success.
NCU offers bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degrees in business and technology management, education, and psychology and is regionally accredited by The Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, Chicago, Illinois.