Online Programs Don't Always Expand Access To Higher Education, Report Says
"Online programs often promise to expand access to higher education by providing more flexible options for students to work at their own pace and offer degrees at a lower cost. But according to a new report from a national faculty organization, these programs may be blocking access to a group of students who could benefit the most from the flexibility they offer: low-income, adult and working students," according to U.S. News and World Report. "That's because the technology required for online courses isn't always easily accessible or affordable for these students. Although the course may be cheaper than classroom-based courses, the Campaign for the Future of Higher Education argues in a report released Wednesday low-income students might still have a harder time accessing it. ... In its report, the third in a series examining the influence of private money in online education, the faculty organization cites a 2013 report from the U.S. Census Bureau analyzing computer and Internet use in the United States. In 2011, for example, about 76 percent of non-Hispanic white households and 83 percent of Asian households reported Internet use at home, compared with 58 percent of Hispanic households and 57 percent of black households. Similarly, about 57 percent of individuals living in low-income households (with incomes below $25,000) reported having a computer at home."
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