The University of Rochester has partnered with nine peer institutions to establish a consortium to explore a new, for-credit, online course program called Semester Online. The consortium is working with the company 2U (formerly known as 2tor), which was created in 2008 to develop for-credit online courses.
"As a leading research university, Rochester has a responsibility to shape and define the use of technology to enrich the academic experience for our students," said Robert Clark, dean of the Hajim School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and interim senior vice president for research. "This partnership allows us to explore the creation of online learning initiatives with peer institutions that share our mission of delivering education of the highest quality."
The other consortium members are Brandeis University, Duke University, Emory University, Northwestern University, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, University of Notre Dame, Vanderbilt University, Wake Forest University, and Washington University in St. Louis.
The program is intended to offer academically qualified students an expanded selection of course offerings from some of the country's most prestigious institutions while giving them the freedom to work, travel, participate in off-campus research programs, or manage personal commitments as they pursue their academic goals. More information about Semester Online courses and the application process will likely be available in early 2013.
Semester Online is one of many approaches Rochester is considering in terms of online education. For the last several months, a University-wide taskforce led by Clark has been assessing the current and future use of technology and digital media in the classroom from traditional, to web-facilitated, to blended courses, to full online.
"Rochester's interest in online education rests in how it can leverage technology to build connectivity between students and faculty, and how it can develop and enhance the educational experience broadly," Clark said.
About Semester Online
Semester Online is the first-of-its-kind program to offer for-credit undergraduate courses through a consortium of top-tier universities that includes Brandeis University, Duke University, Emory University, Northwestern University, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, University of Notre Dame, University of Rochester, Vanderbilt University, Wake Forest University, and Washington University in St. Louis. In partnership with 2U, formerly known as 2tor, Semester Online offers rigorous, online, for-credit courses to college students from anywhere in the world. For more information, please visit semesteronline.org.
About 2U, Inc.
2U, Inc., formerly known as 2tor, Inc., partners with top-tier colleges and universities to deliver rigorous, selective graduate degree and undergraduate for-credit programs online. Founded in 2008 by John Katzman and a team of education veterans, the company provides universities with the technologies, infrastructural support and capital they need to transform their on-campus programs into high-quality, web-based programs. 2U is one of the highest-funded education technology start-ups in the United States. 2U has partnered with prestigious colleges and research universities to deliver the following groundbreaking online programs:
- USC Rossier Online: Master of Arts in Teaching, Master of Arts in Teaching –TESOL and Master's of Education in Advanced Instruction from the University of Southern California Rossier School of Education
- MSW@USC: Master of Social Work (MSW) from the University of Southern California School of Social Work
- Nursing@Georgetown: Master of Science Degree in Nursing from Georgetown University School of Nursing & Health Studies
- MBA@UNC: Master of Business Administration (MBA) from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Kenan-Flagler Business School
- MPA@UNC: Master of Public Administration (MPA) from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Government
- @WashULaw: Master of Laws (LL.M.) in U.S. Law from Washington University School of Law
- MPH@GW: Master of Public Health (MPH) in International and Rural Health from the George Washington University School of Public Health and Health Services
- Semester Online: For-credit undergraduate program through a consortium of leading universities and colleges