Online University Consortium Research Indicates Corporate Preference for Traditional University Programs and Graduates Continues to Climb
12-Month Study Suggests For-Profit Institution Popularity Slipping
as Company Standards Call for Quality, Well-Educated Candidates
July 15, 2004, Washington,
D.C. - Traditional universities
remain top choice for
corporations over for-profit
providers of online
education and degree
programs, and candidates
with credentials from
are more likely to be
hired and promoted than
those from for-profit
schools. These results
were gleaned from data
compiled over twelve
months by the Online
and further support
recent findings from
other industry experts.
According to Deborah Besemer, President and CEO of recruitment services provider BrassRing, employers are actually avoiding schools that have flooded the market with online degree programs having no regard for quality. "We see this when they search for candidates and specifically eliminate certain schools from their search. Reputation of the educational institution is what matters the most," says Besemer. "Employers want to hire students who have a full college experience whether online or in the classroom. They are looking for well-educated individuals to join their companies."
One reason for-profit institutions fail is substandard admissions requirements. Industry studies have shown many students graduating from for-profit schools need help in basic areas - reading, writing and mathematics. According to one for-profit executive, many of these students have not been successful in high school and would have difficulty at a four-year college or wouldn't be accepted at all.
Another criticism is that minimally qualified instructors are delivering watered-down curriculum. One for-profit instructor said he can take a three-month course from a traditional school and teach it in two weeks. Consequently, regulators such as The Association of Advanced Collegiate Schools have refused to accredit several for-profits, citing their inability to provide sound programs for education.
Online UC recommends careful scrutiny of an institution's reputation, quality of programs, and primary motivation to educate. The Online UC website provides a directory of schools who have met a set of seven standards required for Consortium membership. An industry checklist is also available at www.onlineuc.net, which features criteria for choosing a quality online education.
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