“It’s getting to the point of either gas or class,” says Robbie K. Melton, associate vice chancellor for the Tennessee Board of Regents, where this summer the number of students taking online courses spiked 29 percent, in part because of the high cost of buying gas to drive to campus.
Enrollments in online courses were already headed upward at colleges across the country, but some officials say that the gas prices are the last straw for many students deciding between an online or in-person option. That trip to campus just seems like a significant expense with average gas prices more than $4 a gallon. A free article in today’s Chronicle explores the trend.
Will gas prices lead to a new expansion of online programs? —Jeffrey R. Young