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Cheryl Peck

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This Year



Enrollment rises at UIS; Capital Scholars, online courses, returning students cited

September 5 , 2003

SPRINGFIELD – Enrollment increased this fall at the University of Illinois at Springfield for the fifth semester in a row, according to figures released today by the Office of Admissions and Records.

A total of 4,574 students are enrolled, a 3% increase over last fall’s figure of 4,451. Darren Bush, Director of Admissions, said the increase is due largely to the Capital Scholars Program, UIS’ four-year baccalaureate program; a dramatic and continuing rise in online course enrollment; and a significant number of returning students.

Bush said the trend toward more fulltime students at UIS continued this fall, particularly at the undergraduate level, as the university’s equivalent of fulltime students rose nearly 4%. UIS defines fulltime as any undergraduate who takes 15 or more hours per semester and any graduate student who takes 12 or more hours per semester.

He also attributed the increase to intensified and expanded recruitment efforts beyond this region, particularly in the Chicago area; a UIS Website that is designed with prospective students in mind; and articulation agreements with community colleges to make the transfer process easier.

There are a total of 2,569 undergraduates enrolled this fall compared to 2,445 last fall, and 2,005 graduate students, down from 2,006 last fall. A total of 641 students are living on campus.

Bush noted that students are taking more credit hours per semester this fall (40,324) compared to last year (38,649), although he emphasized that the largest population of students at UIS continues to be parttime adults who commute to campus within an approximate 60-mile radius.

The Capital Scholars Program enrolled 116 first-year students this fall. Those students represent the third class of first-year students admitted to UIS. They join Capital Scholars at the sophomore- and junior levels (76 sophomores and 81 juniors).

Online enrollment at UIS has increased every semester since the university first began offering such courses in fall 1998. There are a ttotal of 1,549 enrollments in online courses this fall, a 28% increase over last year’s 1,211.

About one out of every four UIS students is taking at least one online class this fall, according to Ray Schroeder, Director of the Office of Technology-Enhanced Learning. “UIS now has the highest enrollment in online courses for credit among the state’s 12 public universities,” he said.

Schroeder noted that two-thirds of the students enrolled in online courses at UIS are not within commuting distance of the campus and reside in about 25 states, Europe and Asia.

UIS offers four bachelor’s degree completion programs fully online – English, Liberal Studies, History, and Computer Science – as well as four undergraduate minors – Computer Science, English, History, and Philosophy.

Two graduate degree programs – Management Information Systems and Education Leadership with a concentration in master teaching and leadership – are offered online, as are numerous individual courses.

UIS, one of three University of Illinois campuses, is a liberal arts institution with an emphasis on public affairs and professional programs. In addition to the Capital Scholars Program, UIS offers 20 bachelor’s degree programs, 19 master’s degree programs, and the Doctorate of Public Administration.