The University of Missouri’s online program makes its own money, and it can make its own tuition discounts.
So hoping to boost enrollment, Mizzou Online on Friday announced it will give a 10 percent tuition discount to Missouri students enrolled in a degree program fully online.
The discount beginning this fall semester will save qualified students about $82.86 per class. The typical online student enrolls in two three-credit-hour courses a semester. Without the discount, online courses cost the same as classes taken on campus — $276.20 a credit hour for undergraduates.
Mizzou Online, started in 2011, operates on tuition dollars from its online students and includes a portion of the tuition dollars coming from on-campus students who fill out their semester of courses with one or two online classes.
Not counting salaries of MU-paid faculty who also teach online and maybe the costs of the building that houses the electronic guts of the online program, “our operating money does not come from the state,” said Stacy Snow, spokeswoman for Mizzou Online.
The new program primarily targets community college graduates who want to pursue a four-year bachelor’s degree while balancing work and family.
To be eligible, students must be residents of Missouri and graduates of a Missouri public community college. A student also must be working toward a degree from MU’s undergraduate distance programs.
MU’s online tuition discount program supports an institutional goal to boost enrollment and a Missouri Department of Higher Education goal to increase to 60 percent the portion of Missouri citizens who have some postsecondary degree or certificate by 2020.
“We have an obligation to work on increasing enrollment, and accessibility is standard operating procedure,” Snow said.
MU has 15,400 students a year taking online courses. About 3,400 of them are online-only students.
“Providing Missourians with access to high-quality and well-respected degrees is at the core of our land grant mission,” Jim Spain, MU vice provost for undergraduate studies and e-learning, said in a statement Friday.
“This tuition award makes our online bachelor’s programs even more accessible to students across our state.”