Northern Arizona University and Pearson Partner to Launch Region’s First Competency-based Online Learning Programs

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NAU and Pearson to design more than 90 online courses that align with program competencies, powered by Pearson LearningStudio


Northern Arizona University (NAU) and Pearson today announced a partnership to create the region’s first competency-based online learning degree programs, as part of NAU’s new Personalized Learning Division. Pearson will collaborate closely with NAU to design more than 90 completely online competency-based courses. The courses will be offered through the Pearson LearningStudio online learning platform. Course modules will include readiness assessment and remediation, and align with degree program competencies. The programs will be available in January 2013.

Personalized Learning at NAU allows students to jump-start certain bachelor’s degree programs by pre-testing to determine what they already know, allowing them to receive credits for prior learning and experience. The program then provides a variety of individualized academic resources to ensure steady progress, including extensive mentoring. Students work online at their own pace, receiving assistance based on frequent assessments of their needs and learning styles. Faculty will actively participate by advising and mentoring, using information gained from student tests and other inputs to offer customized strategies for success.

“With Personalized Learning, we are opening a new era in academic instruction at Northern Arizona University. This program is a huge step toward transforming our institution through technology. Partnering with Pearson, a proven leader in content development and delivery, has helped us to realize our vision for this next-generation learning program,” said Dr. John Haeger, President of Northern Arizona University.

"Northern Arizona University is taking a leadership role in creating innovative approaches to learning that help drive student success with its online competency-based program. Pearson’s collaboration with NAU will create a robust, efficacy-based program that will deliver a truly personalized learning experience. We anticipate seeing a growing number of institutions looking to implement similar programs," said Don Kilburn, Vice Chairman of Pearson Higher Education and CEO of Pearson Learning Solutions.

Through the partnership, NAU will work with Pearson’s curriculum design team to develop courses for three fully online Baccalaureate degrees, including Computer Information Technology, Business Administration (with a specialization in small business), and Liberal Studies. Courses will utilize learning outcomes to allow students to demonstrate competencies; a wide range of high quality content that includes readiness testing and remediation support; and advanced data analytics applications to monitor and analyze trends in student performance, and track their achievement of learning objectives.

About Northern Arizona University
Northern Arizona University is one of three state universities in Arizona with its main campus located in Flagstaff and dozens of statewide campuses as well as online learning options. The university is primarily a four-year, high-research, residential campus offering bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees, with additional degrees offered across the state and online.

About Pearson
Pearson, the world’s leading learning company, has global reach and market-leading businesses in education, business information and consumer publishing (NYSE: PSO). The company provides innovative print and digital education materials, including personalized learning programs such as MyLab/Mastering, education services including custom publishing, and content-independent platforms including the EQUELLA digital repository and Pearson LearningStudio online learning platform.

Media Contact: Susan Aspey, susan(dot)aspey(at)pearson(dot)com or (800) 745-8489

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