Saturday, January 21, 2017

UNIVERSITY OF THE PEOPLE: The Tuition-Free University

With headquarters in Pasadena, California, the University of the People (UoPeople) was launched in 2009 by Israeli entrepreneur and UoPeople President Shai Reshef. He was nominated in 2012 as one of Wired Magazine’s “50 People Changing the World.”

UoPeople is the first non-profit, tuition-free, accredited online university. It gained accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council in the US in 2014.The University has been able to offer tuition-free education because of its use of volunteers (including more than 4,000 professionals). Also Open Educational Resources, Open Source Technology, peer-to-peer learning, and support by/ partnership with foundations and corporations such as the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, the Carnegie Corporation, Microsoft, Hewlett Packard, and others are apart of this University. 

UoPeople is dedicated to allowing students access to higher education globally. This program  is designed to help qualified high school graduates overcome financial, geographic, social, and personal constraints keeping them from entering college.  By 2016 the UoPeople had accepted 5,000 students from 180 countries, and the University even had students studying from home in Aleppo, Syria during recent heavy shelling.

Tuition at UoPeople is FREE, but there is an application fee of $60, and a processing fees for each examination taken ($100/exam: undergraduate programs, and $200/exam: MBA program).  Thus, an Associate degree, with 20 courses to be studied over two years, costs a total of $2,060; a Bachelor’s degree with 40 courses over four years costs $4,060, and the MBA with 12 courses costs $2,460.  Students who cannot afford these fees may apply for assistance.  UoPeople works with top corporations and organizations to provide grants and scholarships to students needing financial support.  Students still have to study hard for their degree and UoPeople help out by providing academic advising, and outreach to students with low grade-point average.

The general requirements for the undergraduate degree programs are: (a) Be 18 years of age or older; (b) Be able to demonstrate high school completion; (c) Have English proficiency; and Must complete the UoPeople’s two Foundation Courses designed to equip students to thrive in their academic degree studies.

Business Administration
Computer Science
Health Sciences
·         Master’s Degree (MBA)
·         Bachelor’s Degree
·         Associate’s Degree
·         Bachelor’s Degree
·         Associate’s Degree
·         Bachelor’s Degree
·         Associate’s Degree

For more details on UoPeople, please click here.

Posted by Dr. Nat Tuivavalagi 

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