After years of resisting jumping into the booming world of online learning, Rutgers University has signed a seven-year deal with Pearson eCollege to dramatically increase the school’s online courses and degree programs.
The agreement, which aims to add tens of thousands of cyberstudents to Rutgers’ rolls by 2020, will allow students around the world to earn Rutgers degrees without ever coming to campus. Rutgers and Pearson, a Colorado distance learning company that partners with dozens of colleges, will split the tuition revenue.
Campus officials said the public-private partnership represents a major step into the online world for a nearly 60,000-student state university that has never had reputation for being a major player in online education.
"I think it is changing. We’re making a really major thrust," David Finegold, Rutgers’ senior vice president for lifelong learning and strategic growth, said Thursday.