November 4, 2015

Younger Students, Women Drawn to Online Learning

WNPR and US News & World Report recently spotlighted an annual report about online higher education enrollment.  “Online College Students” by Aslanian Market Research and the Learning House, surveyed 1,500 students enrolled in online courses for the spring 2015 semester. 

The survey’s findings revealed a growing interest from younger students, as well as a continued strong enrollment rate among women compared with men:
  • 34% of undergraduate online students were under age 25, up from 25% in 2012;
  • 19% of graduate online students were under age 25, up from 13% in 2012; and
  • female students far outnumbered males, accounting for 70% of undergraduate and 72% of graduate students.
The articles explore possible reasons why women outnumber men in online course enrollment.   One explanation is that more women are pursuing higher education in general than men.  The US Department of Education’s National Center for Education Statistics found in a May 2015 report that women outnumbered men in both undergraduate and undergraduate studies (not limited to online studies), making up 56% and 59% of such students, respectively.