The Sloan Consortium conducts an annual study of the state of online and blended learning nationwide.
• Almost 3.5 million students were taking at least one online course during the fall 2006 term; a nearly 10 percent increase over the number reported the previous year.
• The 9.7 percent growth rate for online enrollments far exceeds the 1.5 percent growth of the overall higher education student population.
• Nearly twenty percent of all U.S. higher education students were taking at least one online course in the fall of 2006.
• All types of institutions cite improved student access as their top reason for offering online courses and programs.
• Institutions that are the most engaged in online education cite increasing the rate of degree completion as a very important objective; this is not as important for institutions that are not as engaged in online learning.
• Online is not seen as a way to lower costs; reduced or contained costs are among the least-cited objectives for online education.