Enrollment in online courses increases at the highest rate ever — from The Chronicle by Travis Kaya

Despite predictions that the growth of online education would begin to level off, colleges reported the highest-ever annual increase in online enrollment—more than 21 percent—last year, according to a report on an annual survey of 2,600 higher-education institutions from the Sloan Consortium and the Babson Survey Research Group.

In fall 2009, colleges—including public, nonprofit private, and for-profit private institutions—reported that one million more students were enrolled in at least one Web-based course, bringing the total number of online students to 5.6 million. That unexpected increase—which topped the previous year’s 17-percent rise—may have been helped by higher demand for education in a rocky economy and an uptick in the number of colleges adopting online courses.

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