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Concordia University Wisconsin (CUW) has been recognized as a national and statewide leader for three of its online master's degree programs.

Concordia online programs ranked among the best

Concordia University Wisconsin (CUW) has been recognized as a national and statewide leader for three of its online master's degree programs. Two of the programs, master's in teaching and learning and master's of educational administration, were named as the best in the state, with master's in counseling as a runner-up. Of the four recognized, each were well placed nationally.

GetEducated.com, BestColleges.com and TheBestSchools.org rank universities on factors such as academic excellence, course offerings, faculty strengths and reputation, acceptance, retention, enrollment and graduation rate, value and tuition. The organizations recognized CUW with the following rankings:

  • Master's in Teaching and Learning - #1 in Wisconsin, #20 in the nation by GetEducated.com.
  • Master's of Educational Administration - #1 in Wisconsin, #13 in the nation by TheBestSchools.org and #1 in Wisconsin, #32 in the nation as a "Best Buy" by GetEducated.com.
  • Master's in Counseling - #2 in Wisconsin, #22 in the nation by BestColleges.com. Online master's degree programs continue to grow in popularity among professionals, returning students and other adults seeking career advancement or changes. From 2011 – 2014, CUW reports a 101 percent increase in enrollment for its online courses and an 87 percent increase for those exclusively enrolled in online programs.

"At Concordia, we are focused on offering our students innovative educational solutions to fit their lives, careers and aspirations," said Dr. Bernard Bull, assistant vice president of academics and professor of educational design and technology, CUW. "Our faculty is dedicated to bringing out the very best of a student's potential, and helping professionals achieve their goals."

GetEducated.com, BestColleges.com and TheBestSchools.org utilize their own series of factors to deliver rankings for schools across the country. For CUW, standout factors include the more than 50 percent of faculty with a doctorate degree and more than 40 percent with a master's degree; a 12-to-1 student-to-faculty ratio; more than 15 online master's degree program offerings including those that are nationally ranked; and a 92 percent employment placement, with 76 percent placed within their major.

Innovation in Education Leadership within Concordia University Wisconsin's online education programming actively designs and implements progressive education practices that work for students and best serve the needs of employers. Students are able to work directly with faculty and their employers to develop customized programming for their career goals, advancement or job placement.

Examples include:

  • Massive Online Open Courses (MOOCs) – These courses are designed as open presentations over multiple weeks for higher learning on a specific topic, generally pertaining to advancing ideologies for education. Concordia has recently hosted two such courses, "Understanding Cheating in Online Courses" and "Learning Beyond Letter Grades." Participants who complete the coursework receive digital badges to demonstrate their participation and competency.
  • Digital Badges – Concordia University Wisconsin offers an online master's degree in educational technology built around competency-based digital badges. As a student works through courses and programs to earn a master's degree, they obtain a series of digital badges to demonstrate new knowledge and skills developed. Digital badges display evidence of growing competency and skills that qualify students for new positions and demonstrate skills that apply to new technology-based professions.
  • Dedicated Online Student Success Advisor – Every online student at Concordia receives a dedicated online student success advisor who serves as their connection and access point to all of the various resources and support at the University. This team member is available from the point of registration for the first class, all the way through graduation from Concordia. The advisor seeks to make all online students feel connected to the University and have as much access as traditional students – a true difference maker for those considering pursuing a higher-education degree.

Overall, the rankings illustrate the importance of attracting and training quality instructors for graduate programs, as well as developing partnerships with regional businesses and K-12 schools so students are best prepared to enter or advance within the workforce upon completion of an online degree program. Those interested in pursing an online education with CUW can visit http://online.cuw.edu/ for more information.

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