There's currently a policy that students cannot take a course through the Outreach College and a regular on-campus course during the same semester. I understand that there are issues of residency, immunization forms, etc., behind this. However, our foray into online offerings is not going to take off if the policy remains inflexible this way. We should embrace modern ways of offering courses and allow students both on and off campus to elect to take online courses. (Submitted June 2014)
Vincent J. Del Casino Jr., Vice Provost for Digital Learning and Student Engagement, and Joel Hauff, Associate Vice President for Student Affairs provided the following response:
The short answer to a very complicated question is this: The costs of offering courses (online, hybrid, or face-to-face) and programs in Outreach vs. Main Campus are different. Main campus courses are underwritten by state dollars and are part of the central costs of the institution (this includes the costs of space, which Outreach College must pay out of their own revenue). Outreach is a self-sufficient entity with its own financial systems. And, UA Main Campus and the Outreach College were set up with different and separate cost structures and financial systems. Currently, to take both Main Campus and Outreach College courses, a student would have to pay for them separately. For most students the combined cost would exceed the tuition cap. The regulation against taking Outreach College and UA courses in the same semester is designed to prevent this situation.
Moving forward we do understand that many UA students would wish a more hybrid educational experience, and are working to address the issue. We are in the process of integrating Outreach College into UAccess to make them available to on-campus students. It will take perhaps 12 to 18 months to complete this transition, but UA students will continue to see more online course options as we build out and integrate the online education experience into the wider campus system.
Submitted (September 2014)