LSU Online is partnering with Project Graduation to allow more students to finish their degrees entirely online.
The first fully online undergraduate programs at the University launched in October 2019. The programs were introduced to help students with unusual circumstances continue to earn a degree after taking leave from their studies. Over 1,300 students are enrolled in LSU Online programs.
There are several reasons a student could be considered a nontraditional student. Many LSU Online students are pursuing their degree after establishing their career, according to Theresa Kumse, the marketing manager for digital and continuing education.
“When these students return to the University, they’re generally looking for programs that enable them to accelerate their careers or return to the job market after a hiatus, for family or personal reasons,” Kumse said.
LSU Online already boasts an average 90-95% retention rate across all its programs and partnering with Project Graduation may improve the rate even more.
Project Graduation also aims to assist former student-athletes who would like to return to the University to complete the degree program they started as a student.
Foreign and out-of-state students find uses in the program as well, with over 60% of the LSU Online student population hailing from outside Louisiana. Shaloma Carroll, an LSU Online construction management student, lives in the Bahamas and is using the program to earn her degree.
“This program has really helped me by giving me the opportunity to set out to achieve my dream of earning my degree,” Carroll said.
LSU Online students receive timed quizzes, and audio and visual monitors are used during exams, just like for traditional students. The students are also required to study on their own time, do assignments and participate in many of the activities a traditional student would in a classroom.
LSU Online doesn't yet offer all the degrees the University offers, but more programs are being added as the program continues to grow. Currently, LSU Online students can pursue bachelor's degrees in interdisciplinary studies, construction management, leadership and human resource development, mass communication with concentrations in either public relations or political communications and sociology.
The time it takes for an online student to complete their program is usually shorter than the four years many traditional students spend at the University , Kumse said.
“Finishing an undergraduate degree can take as little as a year,” Kumse said.
Over 1,300 students are enrolled in LSU Online programs.
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