Federal funding for online college funding
In February 2007, referring to non-traditional students everywhere, Congress lifted the so-called “50% rule”. According to this rule, schools had to offer at least 50% of their classes in a class eligible for the federal student support program. This has made it very difficult for online universities to provide good government-funded financial support to the online university.
Originally implemented to prevent fraud that is widely recognized in the industry, the 50 percent rule helped to control things by preventing the so-called “diploma factories” from entering the federal cookie jar. Before this limitation, these graduate factories had effectively attracted students by promising state aid to pay for their studies at a distance and, therefore, made good profits without offering any real education to anyone. Since most of these agencies offered virtually no real class when the rule came into effect, their access to federal funds also disappeared.
Of course, this was done at the expense of another legitimate distance education program that had less federal funding for online college. The repeal of the law helps free up some of this college funding online sponsored by a federal college for these more accredited programs.
Traditional universities fear aid will spread too far
Not everyone is happy with the change in the law. As traditional universities increasingly offer their own courses on the Internet, they claim that their status as “legitimate” schools entitles them to a larger share of the pie than schools devoted to distance education programs. Most of them are non-profit organizations and attract students by offering attractive student support programs that cannot reconcile legitimate distance education programs with federal funding for unsupported online universities financially.
As non-profit schools are earning a limited amount of money, some fear that it will be much more difficult to attract students and pay aid bills at a time when enrollment continues to increase and the number of available money increases.
Distance learning opportunities through increased financial support for online universities
However, Congress and its constituents want different educational opportunities. Enrollment in online learning has skyrocketed in recent years. Graduates of non-traditional programs get jobs, pay taxes, and are part of a thriving economy. It is a result that Congress wishes to support. There are now approximately 2,500 non-traditional nonprofit schools that have been accredited by the federal government to provide financial support to federal students for an online university, the largest of which is the University of Phoenix. 300,000 students are enrolled across the country.
This is good news for all rural, military, and active students. You can get a degree online and, with the new dominance of financial support for online universities, you have the support you need.