When Hilary Nagel goes to “class” at College of Southern Nevada, she powers on her iPad and listens to a lecture in her pajamas from the comfort of her home.
Nagel, 28, is among the university students across the nation taking online classes. As cash-strapped colleges contend with budget cuts, higher-education leaders and politicians have looked toward online education as a potentially cheaper way to educate students.
In Nevada, which last year saw a 14 percent decline in state funding for higher education, online classes have proliferated as demand has grown.
The first college in Southern Nevada to offer online education was CSN, in 1996. The state’s largest higher education institution started out with one computer server, 37 sections of online classes and 528 online students.