U.S. News and World Report released its inaugural rankings of online degree programs Jan. 10, placing Drexel University second in the nation for its online graduate nursing program.
Drexel was included twice in the online nursing categories for “Student Services and Technology” and “Student Engagement and Accreditation.”
Over 196 online bachelor’s degree programs and 523 online master’s degree programs in business, engineering, nursing, education and computer information technology were included in the magazine’s rankings. In order to be considered by U.S. News and World Report, each program had to have at least 80 percent of its course content available online.
“We’re very proud of Drexel Nursing’s reputation both on campus and online. National recognition is gratifying to the faculty and staff who design and teach Drexel’s innovative, high-quality online nursing programs,” Gloria Donnelly, dean of the Drexel College of Nursing and Health Professions, said in a Drexel press release.
Drexel has been a premier online university since it first offered e-learning classes in 1996, and it has offered online nursing programs since 1999.
Currently, the College of Nursing and Health Professions offers Bachelor of Nursing, Master of Nursing, and the highly lauded Doctor of Nursing Practice degrees online, in addition to several specialized post-bachelor’s certificate programs.
Online course enrollment in the United States reached a record high in 2010 with more than 6.1 million students, according to a 2011 report by the Babson Survey Research Group.
U.S. News and World Report announced that the number of enrolled students in online classes doubled between 2007 and 2011 and credited the leap to the nation’s stagnant economy and competitive job market, as well as the quantity and quality of online classes available from various institutions.
According to the magazine, more than 2,500 colleges and universities were surveyed, with 65 percent of administrators reporting that online learning is an important factor of their institution’s long-term strategy.
The U.S. News’ honor roll lists for online programs also were compiled for bachelor’s degree programs and master’s degree programs in business, education and engineering.
In 2011 the University was listed by U.S. News and World Report as the sixth-highest “Up-and-Coming” college in the nation and a top-100 institution overall.
This is not the first time the University has received recognition for its online learning. In 2010 Drexel won the Sloan-C Award for Excellence in Institution-Wide Online Education.