Harvard, MIT Part of $800 Million Deal to Push Access to Online Education - The Wall Street Journal

Harvard, MIT Part of $800 Million Deal to Push Access to Online Education - The Wall Street Journal Harvard, MIT Part of $800 Million Deal to Push Access to Online Education - The Wall Street Journal Posted: 29 Jun 2021 04:00 AM PDT Education-technology company 2U Inc., which runs graduate programs for dozens of top universities, is buying web-based course provider edX, a nonprofit founded by Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, for $800 million. The deal combines two major players in online instruction as universities around the world push more aggressively into digital offerings. Many schools scrambled to shift courses online when the pandemic shut campuses last year, and they are now expected to build on—and polish—the programs. The sale proceeds will go to a nonprofit, to be run by Harvard and MIT, that the schools say will focus on reducing inequalities in access to education. It will maintain the open-acc

9 Best Online Liberal Arts Degree Programs In 2020 • Benzinga - Benzinga

9 Best Online Liberal Arts Degree Programs In 2020 • Benzinga - Benzinga

9 Best Online Liberal Arts Degree Programs In 2020 • Benzinga - Benzinga

Posted: 15 Apr 2020 12:00 AM PDT

Benzinga Money is a reader-supported publication. We may earn a commission when you click on links in this article. Learn more.

If you want a degree that meets the educational requirements for enticing job opportunities, an online liberal arts degree may be a good fit. You can take engaging courses on subjects you're interested in. 

When you're ready to get started, Benzinga is here to help you find the right fit.  

Why Choose an Online Liberal Arts Degree?

An online liberal arts degree gives you the skills and expertise to thrive in many fields. You'll hone your analytical, communication, critical thinking, decision making, interpersonal, problem-solving and reasoning skills.

This degree program also gives you the flexibility to complete courses that are most intriguing to you. If you know which field you want to enter when you graduate, it's best to specialize your degree if the college or university offers that option. This allows you to gain specialized knowledge that will serve you well in your role.  

Liberal arts students also earn competitive salaries in many rewarding roles. Graduates work in design, information technology, journalism, programming, publishing and a host of other industries. If you grow bored in your current role, you have the flexibility to change directions and pursue a role in a different sector. 

Find an Online University

How to Choose an Online Liberal Arts Degree

You want to select a degree program from an accredited college or university. But that's not the only factor you should consider as you evaluate your options. Be mindful of the following: 


How is the program structured? Can you access course material 24/7 or at set times? Are video lectures available for viewing at any time? These are just a few of the characteristics you should look for in an online liberal arts degree program.

You also want a program that allows transfer credits if you were previously enrolled at a college or university. This is a major plus because you can earn your degree in record time and save money on tuition and fees. 

Offers Concentrations

Liberal arts degree programs lend a ton of flexibility to students with varying backgrounds and educational goals. The program you're considering should offer concentrations or electives that equip you with specific skills and knowledge to help you in your career. 


How does the cost of attendance for the programs you're considering stack up to other comparable options? The best choice may not be the cheapest, but you shouldn't settle for an institution that's charging a fortune for a degree that can be earned elsewhere. 

Jobs Waiting for You with a Liberal Arts Degree

The job opportunities are endless for liberal arts degree holders. Here are some of the popular options: 

Social Worker

Help those in need with a career as a social worker. You will be tasked with identifying individuals and families that are in dire need or resources and referring them to the right channels to find relief. Social workers also create case files and document details regarding their interactions with clients. 

When searching for employment, you'll find that there are social workers who perform varying tasks. There are child and family social workers, healthcare social workers, mental health and substance abuse social workers and school social workers. 

On average, social workers earn $49,470 per year, which equates to $23.79 per hour. 

Education Administrator (Elementary and Secondary School)

Seeking a leadership role in education? Consider a career as an education administrator at an elementary or secondary school. You'll be responsible for planning and overseeing the execution of academic, administrative and auxiliary operations. 

The median pay for education administrators in 2018 was $95,310. 


Do you have the skills to make written content shine? You may enjoy this role, as it includes rectifying grammatical, spelling and punctuation errors, verifying cited facts and collaborating with writers to brainstorm enticing ideas. Editors also help writers plan out their stories and issue the final stamp of approval before a piece is published. 

There are many types of editors. You can pursue a role as an assistant, copy, executive or managing editor. 

The average annual salary for editors is $59,480. 

Best Online Colleges for a Liberal Arts Degree

A quick search for the best online liberal arts degrees can be overwhelming. We've taken the guesswork out of finding the best option by compiling a list for you. We've also included a description of each degree program to help you narrow down your choices.  

1. Southern New Hampshire University

Southern New Hampshire University Logo

Southern New Hampshire University offers an array of online liberal arts degree programs to prepare you for your dream job. Choose from the following Bachelor of Arts options: 

  • Communication
  • Creative writing and English
  • English language and literature
  • General studies
  • History 

As an online student, you will have access to career advisors to help you with your job search during and after graduation. You can also tap into free tutoring services to navigate challenging subjects and connect with your dedicated academic advisor to ensure you stay on track and graduate on time. 

Enroll now

2. University of Iowa

University of Iowa logo

Prefer not to choose a major? Want to complete courses from many departments instead? Consider an online Bachelor of Liberal Studies from the University of Iowa. 

Students complete coursework from one of these tracks: 

  • Expression in Writing and Arts 
  • Family, Community and Social Support
  • Global Studies 
  • Health and Human Studies
  • Justice and Ethics
  • Organizational Studies

You also have the option to earn a certificate in:

  • Aging and Longevity Studies
  • Entrepreneurial Management 
  • Leadership Studies
  • Museum Studies
  • Nonprofit Leadership and Philanthropy
  • Nonprofit Management
  • Writing 

The university requires 120 credit hours to earn the degree. 

Enroll now

3. University of Illinois at Springfield 


The online bachelor's degree in Liberal Studies from the University of Illinois Springfield also allows you to create a customized education plan that piques your interest. 

Students complete core courses plus a series of electives related to art, heritage, identity, institutions, language, nature and work. You can also choose a thematic focus and a minor to enhance your degree. 

You need 30 transfer credit hours from a qualifying college or university to be admitted to the program. 

Enroll now

4. Oregon State University 

Earn an online Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science in Liberal Studies from Oregon State University. It's ideal for individuals who want to earn a graduate degree or earn a flexible degree that meets the educational requirement for many careers. 

Create a major that reflects your educational goals and interests. Choose from courses in a variety of disciplines, including: 

  • Contemporary global issues
  • Cultural diversity 
  • Fine arts
  • Humanities
  • Literature and arts
  • Non-Western culture 
  • Science
  • Social sciences
  • Technology and society
  • Western culture

You can also select the pre-education option and prepare for a career as an elementary education teacher. 

Alumni of the bachelor's in Liberal Studies degree program work in business, communications, education, healthcare, law enforcement, social work and teaching.  

This program requires 180 credit hours to graduate — some transfer credits are permitted. 

Enroll now

5. University of Massachusetts Lowell


The University of Massachusetts Lowell offers an online bachelor's degree in liberal arts to help you develop your critical thinking, oral, written and problem-solving skills.

Students select 2 concentrations from this list to create specialized degrees: 

  • Art History
  • Economics
  • English
  • Gender Studies
  • History 
  • Legal Studies
  • Philosophy
  • Political Science
  • Psychology

You'll be prepared for several careers — communications, education, humanitarian assistance, human resources, international governance, journalism, law, paralegal services and politics.

The program requires 120 credit hours to reach the finish line. You can transfer up to 90 hours from an accredited college or university. 

Enroll now

6. Northern Arizona University 

Northern Arizona University also offers a Bachelor of Arts or Science in liberal arts. This degree program is an ideal option for individuals interested in art, editing, writing, public relations, sales, management and other related fields. 

Students in the Bachelor of Arts degree program study the arts, history, literature and philosophy. If you choose the Bachelor of Science degree track, you'll complete coursework to help you build leadership skills and hone your communication and critical thinking skills. 

You'll need 120 credit hours to earn your degree. 

Enroll now

7. Saint Leo University 

Saint Leo

Saint Leo University prides itself on delivering a first-class learning experience for its online students. You can get a Bachelor of Arts in liberal studies and prepare for a career in the business world or with a government or social service agency. 

When you enroll, you'll dive into business, humanities, fine arts, literature, natural sciences, quantitative reasoning and social science. The following core courses are required: 

  • Bioethics
  • Business, Government and Society
  • Contemporary Humanities
  • Critical Thinking in the Liberal Studies 
  • Environmental Studies: Creating Sustainable Societies
  • Exploration in the Liberal Studies 
  • Foundations of Modern Social Sciences 
  • Mathematical Inquiry 
  • Religion and Personal Experience 
  • Survey of Major Writers of the 20th Century
  • Social and Cultural Foundations of Behavior

You need 120 credit hours to complete the program. 

Enroll now

8. Northwestern State University of Louisiana 

Nothwestern State Univ

Consider an online bachelor's degree in Liberal Arts from Northwestern State University of Louisiana to continue your education. The program is fluid and can be customized to meet your academic and career needs. 

The curriculum consists of general education and foreign language courses, followed by an array of lower and upper-level electives in humanities and social and behavioral sciences. Choose from elective courses on a variety of subjects, including anthropology, art, dance, history, music, philosophy, political science and theatre. Criminal justice, economics and geography classes are also available. 

Enroll now. 

9. University of North Carolina at Greensboro

The online bachelor's degree in liberal studies from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro prepares you for a career in many industries. You can land a role in business, communication, education, government and social service.

It offers 3 tracks to help you align your educational pursuits with your career goals: 

  • Humanities
  • Professional studies 
  • Social sciences

Enjoy affordable tuition that's lower than what your classmates who attend classes on campus pay. You can learn when it's convenient for you since lectures are pre-recorded and accessible 24/7.

Enroll now

Get Started with an Online Liberal Arts Degree Program

Take the guesswork out of finding the best online liberal arts degree program. Start with our list of top recommendations and analyze what each has to offer before you make a decision. 

UC Berkeley Won’t Discount Fall Tuition Even If Classes Remain Virtual - Forbes

Posted: 24 Apr 2020 12:51 PM PDT

In a message sent to students on Thursday, University of California, Berkeley announced that tuition and mandatory fees will not be discounted should online teaching continue into the fall of 2020.

"Tuition and mandatory fees have been set regardless of the method of instruction and will not be refunded in the event instruction occurs remotely for any part of the Academic Year," the notice read.

Higher education is in crisis following the shutdown of campuses around the world in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Parents and students are now weighing their options should campuses remain closed in the fall and the academic year begins with online classes while tuition and fees remain unchanged. The prospect of taking classes in isolation, bereft of the experience of campus life, may prompt many students and their families to reconsider a hefty price tag.

"This changes the calculus of college going, if students can't do all the things they expect they should," said Dr. Roger Lewis Geiger, emeritus professor of higher education at Penn State University. "Some students will think, 'if I have to take courses online, and I can't live with my frat brothers and go to sports events, maybe it's not worth going.'"

But colleges and universities, already under financial strain, are struggling with high fixed costs and are reluctant to cut fees. "Mandatory university charges for tuition and student services continue to help cover ongoing operations such as the delivery of instruction and the cost of student services such as registration, financial aid, and remote academic advising," the UC Berkeley notice said.

For the 2019-2020 academic year, undergraduate tuition and fees at UC Berkeley for both California residents and non-residents was $14,254. Out-of-state students, including those from overseas, are charged an additional $29,754, according to the university's website.

Dr. Geiger said that while the global health crisis is unlikely to derail a student's plans to pursue a university degree, it could prompt an examination of less expensive options. "Doing something cheaper online, or attending a community college not far from home might not be a bad strategy while waiting for the dust to clear," he said.

Indeed, even if UC Berkeley does open its campus doors this fall, remote instruction will continue to be an option for students who are constrained by travel restrictions. "Given the uncertainty the world faces, some students may not be able to safely travel to campus," the notice to students read. "We plan to continue to offer remote instruction as an option for Fall 2020, even if classes are held in person."

Universities across the country closed their campuses in March due to the coronavirus outbreak, teaching the remainder of spring semester classes online, but tuition and fees were not adjusted to reflect that change. At New York University, more than 11,500 students have signed a petition asking for a partial refund on that tuition, citing the loss of on-campus benefits, such as access to labs and facilities. "Zoom university is not worth $50K a year," one NYU student commented, referring to the video conferencing service widely being used by educators to teach online classes.

On the West Coast, students are also petitioning the University of California system for a partial refund of spring quarter fees. The University of California has said it does not intend to discount tuition, citing the continued cost of campus administration and maintenance. "In many areas the University faces increased costs, not lower costs, due to the pandemic," a UC spokesperson said in an emailed statement, according to UCLA's campus newspaper, citing expenditures on video collaboration, software and website licenses.

Many US universities have refunded at least part of accommodation and food plan costs to students who have left campuses. The University of Wisconsin-Madison estimates it will suffer a $100 million loss because of the COVID-19 pandemic, even if some degree of normalcy is achieved by June. Should face-to-face teaching this fall be deemed unsafe, and universities continue to teach remotely, calls for tuition breaks will likely grow. There is a focus on what elite universities will do, such as those in the Ivy League. Yale, for one, has said it will announce the fate of the fall semester by early July.  

Before the current global health crisis, domestic enrollments at higher education institutions were already in decline, and universities had turned to international students to generate much-needed tuition revenue. Experts forecasted an eventual contraction of the sector, with one oft-cited study predicting that half of America's colleges will go under in 10 to 15 years. With ongoing travel bans and personal safety concerns now in the mix, the pandemic is likely to not only accelerate these trends, but deepen them. Top-tier schools like UC Berkeley have more flexibility than lower-ranked schools to keep their tuition rates high. They may take a financial hit from the pandemic but they will survive.


Popular posts from this blog

For inbound college students — and universities — fall semester presents new choices and dilemmas - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

2021 MLB Draft Big Board, version 1.0: Keith Law ranks the Top 100 draft prospects - The Athletic

6 Best Online Business Courses for 2021 - Investopedia