For Immediate Release 5 October 2000
University Consortium (EUC) of South Dakota Online
Regents Receive Update on the First Month of Operation
RAPID CITY- The Board of Regents, at its regular business meeting today at the campus of South Dakota School of Mines and Technology, received an update on the Electronic University Consortium (EUC) of South Dakota. The EUC serves as a single point of contact for electronic information and access to distance education credit and non-credit activities from the six South Dakota public universities.
South Dakota's one-stop for distance education went online as scheduled, reported the EUC Chief Operating Officer, Dr. Janet Lewis. "In these first months we've really concentrated to get the word out about the educational opportunities available through the EUC and I believe our efforts have been successful. The EUC web site opened on August 18th. As of September 25th it has received 3,173 hits. Requests for more information on the EUC have come from interested persons across the state and as far away as Egypt," said Lewis. "Some of the South Dakota enthusiasm for the EUC was generated through thirty-second radio spots broadcast statewide. Thanks to the South Dakota Broadcasters Association and its director, Steve Willard, the EUC received the Non-Commercial Sustaining Announcements grant which provides a three to one match for all dollars invested."
Recent policy changes have made it easier for students interested in taking courses from more than one of the public universities. Students designate one of the six Regental universities as their primary university. It will bear responsibility for student services, except for those specific to a particular course. This eliminates duplicative student requests for services. Automatic transfer of courses taken at other regental institutions back to the primary institution has also been approved, waiving the transfer fee for students taking courses from more than one of the public universities.
"We are currently reviewing Board policies for controlling quality assurance for the distance education courses. Over 2,300 students have enrolled in distance education courses in Fall 2000. It is important to ensure these students that the quality of the distance education courses remains high. Each university is creating a quality assurance review process for every course it offers by
distance. The EUC will provide a second level of review for quality assurance," said Lewis. "The criteria for the distance education courses must match the academic standards as those delivered at the institution where they originate and must have comparable learning outcomes as those taken on campus."
"The Regents are pleased with the EUC accomplishments. By providing access to quality educational opportunities the EUC will impact the lives of many South Dakotans. Learning is a lifelong process and the EUC gives people who are place-bound and/or time-bound by their job, family or other responsibilities the opportunity to continue their learning without disrupting their lives," said Regents Executive Director Robert T. Tad Perry.
Visit the EUC website at www.worldclasseducation.com.
For more information, contact: Dr. Janet Lewis, Chief Operating Officer of the EUC or Dr. Robert T. Tad Perry, Executive Director of the South Dakota Board of Regents, (605) 773-3455.
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