Aspen University is an online college that expects to see an 81 percent increase in students for the coming years. In 2014 alone, Aspen University received 84 new students per month.
Aspen University was established in 1987 as a distance learning university. Distance learning universities are institutions that teach outside of a traditional classroom, whether through online classes or mailed lesson plans.
“Aspen is dedicated to offering any motivated college-worthy student the opportunity to receive a high quality, responsibly priced distance-learning education for the purpose of achieving sustainable economic and social benefits for themselves and their families”, says the Aspen University homepage.
Aspen has six schools that one can apply to. These schools include: the School of Professional Studies, with majors like criminal justice and medical management, the School of Nursing, where one can become a registered nurse, the School of Education, for earning bachelors, masters or doctorate in teaching, the School of Management, where one can earn an MBA in fields such as entrepreneurship, finance or informational management, the School of Informational Technologies, with programs to receive a masters in information systems and the School of Arts and Sciences, with mainly fine arts majors.
The price of an associates or bachelor degree is $125 per credit, and the cost of a masters or doctoral certificate is $325 per credit. The individual total cost for each of these degrees — associate, bachelor, masters and doctorate — does not exceed $20,000.
For those who wish to expand their education and training, they can receive certificates in project management or information technologies, with prices comparable to that of a master’s degree.
Aspen University, like many other online universities, stress the affordability and flexibility of their programs through monthly payment plans and 16 week course schedules.
Babson Survey Research Group reports that 33 percent of the 21.3 million students enrolled in colleges are taking at least one online class. These numbers are up from the 1.6 million, or 11.6 percent reported in 2002.
“Personally I enjoy having a more face to face interaction with my professors” said Anna Boucheva, a second semester business management major . “It gives me a chance to get to know them as people and to ask questions if I need to. Online classes detach students from learning and reduce the number of opportunities they would have in a normal class.”