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December 13, 2004
Gwinnett Technical College Leads State in Online Education
Enrollment Growth Reflects Trend In Higher Education Landscape
The online education program for many colleges is the fastest growing segment of their enrollment. In fact, online enrollment is expected to exceed one million students next year, representing a $6 billion-plus market. Gaining in credibility in the past few years, online learning has particularly impacted working adults, providing them easy access to higher education.
Gwinnett Technical College currently leads the state’s network of technical colleges in the number of students enrolled in online courses.
In fall alone, the two-year college had 1,665 students enrolled in 113 online courses, ranging from areas as diverse as computer security, landscape management and business leadership. Within the technical college system, Gwinnett Tech has the largest number of students in online classes followed by DeKalb Tech with 1,465 students.
The biggest growth areas for online courses this quarter included business sciences, economics and the humanities, according to Britt Watwood, director of online learning for Gwinnett Technical College.
The number of students taking multiple classes online has seen significant growth – up fourteen percent from last year. “The increase is likely due to students positive first-time experiences with online classes,” said Watwood. “We work very hard to make students successful in a fully online environment. Several classes have streamed video lectures available to students. Students can log in at their convenience, take practice tests to ensure they have mastered the subject and even play games that test their knowledge and skills. Students first decide to try an online course one quarter just to see how it works and most find that it is a good fit for them. When they find that they can get the same quality college experience from home, they register for two or three online courses during the next quarter.”
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About Gwinnett Tech
Gwinnett Technical College, one of Georgia's largest technical colleges, serves more than 21,000 students annually to meet the workforce training needs of the region. The college offers more than 50 associate degree, diploma and certificate programs and hundreds of seminars, workshops and courses providing specialized training. Gwinnett Tech’s service area includes Gwinnett and North Fulton counties. Gwinnett Technical College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award the associate degree. Contact the Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097 or callÂ 404-679-4500 for questions about the accreditation of Gwinnett Technical College.Â In addition, some college programs hold separate licensure or accreditation status with appropriate agencies. For more information, visitÂ www.GwinnettTech.edu.
A unit of the Technical College System of Georgia.