Andrew Jackson University is an online university. Not one of bricks and mortar. It has a unique sponsored tuition program allows those holding acceptable baccalaureate degrees to obtain an American MBA from an accredited university for less than $3,000.
In order to qualify for this low cost program a student must sign up with a sponsor and participate in a beta test, agree to receive a newsletter, or be added to a membership list. There are, however, no contractual obligations and a student may opt out at any time. The low sponsored tuition cost levels remain as long as a student is enrolled.
One such sponsor, Pupilcity, is in beta test for a social network for college students worldwide.
Prospective enrollees agree to participate in the beta test, expected to begin in early 2009, but there are no contractual responsibilities obligating a participant.
Pupilcity benefits by attracting actual college students who will help guide the social network content and design.
The student benefits from sponsored tuition, and Andrew Jackson University benefits by eliminating student acquisition costs.
All courses are presented online in English. The university’s admissions department will help with language and credential verification requirements. Tests are conducted online using webcam proctoring. Proctor fees and the estimated cost of books, plus an administrative fee of $400 per semester are included in the $3,000.
Baccalaureate and associate degree programs are also available for similar cost savings.
Is this the way education is headed?
Probably not. First, emploters might look at such a degree as being less authentic than one from a bricks and mortar univeristy. Then, the full university experience is multi-layered, complex. Far from something that can be easily handled with a computer and video connection. But it is a step towards more affordable degrees which must be applauded.
A bias should be declared. The writer has two children owing some $82,000 in tution fees at the end of their traditional university education.