The preference for online education seems to be ever-increasing with students today. With 1,602 students enrolled on the first day of fall semester 2011, The University of Wisconsin Colleges Online (UW), a fully accredited Arts and Sciences online program, saw a continuing trend of increased enrollment. This number represents a 19 percent increase from students enrolled in UW’s online program last fall.
Their demographic breakdown is also similar to research Education Online previously published.
UW’s data supports the finding that the majority of students enrolled in online degree programs are women. While records on current demographics will not be updated until September 19th, in past years, 71 percent of UW Colleges Online students were women, and 71 percent were 22 or older. UW Colleges Online’s typical student is a female in her 20s or 30s based on their enrollment tallies, recorded on the tenth day of every fall semester.
“Online education continues to be the fastest-growing part of higher education because it meets the needs of non-traditional students, particularly those who have jobs or families and cannot attend classes on a university campus,” said Ray Cross, chancellor of UW Colleges and UW-Extension.
Courses taught in UW’s online program are developed and taught by the same professors that teach at UW’s campuses, and offer the convenience of interactive learning entirely online. It seems that women are continuing to take advantage of online education due to its non-traditional format as well as its ability to be easily integrated in their busy schedules.