Purdue graduate engineering online program ranked 4th by U.S.News

January 16, 2013  

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - Purdue University's College of Engineering online graduate engineering program is fourth in the U.S.News & World Report's Best Online Programs rankings.

The rankings were released Tuesday (Jan. 15) and can be seen at http://www.usnews.com/education/online-education

Purdue's Division of Engineering Professional Education delivers six different master's degrees entirely online, said Dale Harris, the division's executive director. In 2012 there were more than 600 active distance students pursuing one of the different degree options. Over the past several years, the program has shown consistent growth of about 14 percent a year.

"Our mission is to provide quality educational opportunities to engineers and computer scientists with careers in progress," said Harris, who also is a professor of engineering education. "We're happy to be recognized by U.S.News & World Report for doing it well. Our success starts with the extraordinarily high quality of the Purdue faculty who instruct our distance classes.

"We support instruction with world-class student services, distance-course production and delivery, and curriculum innovation. Graduate education is increasingly important in ensuring personal and collective competitiveness within the technical professions and quality online programs are critical to meeting that need."

Purdue University's College of Engineering is embarking on a program to increase its faculty by 30 percent over the next five years. The additional faculty will allow the college to grow enrollment and expand the breadth and depth of its research efforts.

In a statement on its website, U.S.News & World Report said it does the rankings because the number of students in online degree programs is "growing rapidly" and "prospective students lack needed information to help them determine the relative strengths and weaknesses between online degree programs."

The magazine's rankings are based on peer reputation (25 percent), student engagement (23 percent), faculty credentials and training (23 percent), student services and technology support (17 percent), and admissions selectivity (12 percent).

Writer: Greg McClure, 765-496-9711, gmcclure@purdue.edu

Source: Dale Harris, 765-494-0212, harris@purdue.edu

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