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Giving Compass' Take:
• In a brief on Education Dive, Natalie Schwartz reviews a recent report showing students' preference to stay local in online schooling.
• How might this data help shape effective funding for online schooling? What can you do to support more effective research on online schools?
• Learn about the benefits of online schooling on a global scale.
Roughly 1.5 million online students were enrolled at institutions in their home states in 2019, compared to around 1.3 million online students attending out-of-state institutions, according to NC-SARA's annual enrollment report.
Previous research has found many campus-based students select an institution within a 50-mile radius of their homes. "Our thinking was that that would be mirrored in the online enrollment," said Lori Williams, president and CEO of NC-SARA, in an interview with Education Dive. "And, in fact, it was."
Students often pick local colleges because of their regional brand recognition, Carol Aslanian, president of Aslanian Market Research at EducationDynamics, told Education Dive earlier this year. "The institution nearby is known by employers; it's known by your family and your friends,"
As NC-SARA's report notes, public colleges dominate the market for in-state students studying online, likely because they are "charged to serve students in their own state."
As more colleges launch online programs, one way they can compete with established players is by focusing their recruitment efforts on local students, according to a 2019 report from consultancy Entangled Solutions. For example, it notes, the University of Maryland, Baltimore County is moving many of its graduate programs online with the aim to enroll most of its online students from the Baltimore-Washington region.
Read the full article about trends in online schooling by Natalie Schwartz at Education Dive.