Expansion of Online Programs

The mission of the Division of Online Programs and Distance Education (OPDE) is to develop a robust online operation that supports a bold vision to expand access to higher education beyond the physical campus.

OPDE strives to position Sul Ross State University as a leading institution in the delivery of affordable, high-quality online degrees that meet the needs of diverse students and communities.

The program was established in 2022 and included hiring an Associate Dean and Director of Teaching and Learning. Last fall, 30 faculty members were certified in the “Applying the Quality Matters Rubric.”

The online programs landing page has been redeveloped, increasing monthly web traffic by 4000 percent and advancing interest in our online graduate degrees.

Our efforts have shown that enrollment increased by 12 percent from October 2022 to January 2023, and that inquiries from prospective online graduate students increased by 51 percent for the same time period.

Strategic priorities include:

  • Align marketing efforts of online degree programs with growth opportunities to achieve university enrollment goals
  • Build organization capacity by expanding technical infrastructure, institutional resources, and relevant policy and procedures
  • Encourage student-centric online and distance education curriculum by providing robust instructional resources and tools to strengthen engagement
  • Improve learner support structures to foster retention and graduation rates within online and distance education programs
  • Increase the number and variety of online programs to meet the demands of diverse and growing regional communities