Recently I discussed distance education with a friend who works in institutional research at a small private college. She boasted about being right in her prediction that enrollment in distance education courses would drop, citing the fact that the University of Phoenix has lost near 100,000 in enrollment the last few years.
My friend is mistaken. Enrollment in distance learning is growing, particularly at public universities. Yes, my friend is right about University of Phoenix, where the lost enrollment figure is 93,343 (from 2012-2015), according to National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) statistics profiled in the Digital Learning Compass: Distance Education Enrollment Report 2017. And other large, private, for-profit, distance learning schools also took a big hit, such as Ashford University: down 34,676 from 2012-2015. But this, of course, is hardly the big picture.