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Ball State online programs named among the best in the nation

Three Ball State University online education programs finished in the Top 20 in national rankings released Tuesday by U.S. News & World Report, and a fourth ranked within the Top 30 in its category.

Ball State offerings recognized in the 2014 U.S. News & World Report Best Online Programs were:

  • Graduate education programs, which ranked 11th out of 238 programs offered by universities nationwide.
  • Graduate business programs, which ranked 17th out of 239 such programs offered by universities across the country.
  • Graduate nursing programs, which ranked 19th out of 130 programs offered by universities in the United States.
  • Bachelor’s degree programs, which ranked 29th out of 283 such programs at U.S. universities. Ball State offers online bachelor’s degrees in business administration, early childhood education, general studies and nursing.

Ball State has taken a number of steps to ensure that its online classes meet high standards for excellence, says Jennifer Bott, associate provost for learning initiatives.

The U.S. News rankings, she says, reflect that commitment.

“Ball State online courses are taught by the same faculty members that teach on our main campus in Muncie. This means our online students get the same level of expertise, engagement and excellence as our main campus students,” Bott says.

Specifically, Bott says, the university has committed resources to help faculty members make the transition from effective face-to-face teaching to excellent online instruction.

“Our Integrated Learning Institute (iLearn) works with faculty members to translate best practices in course design, assessment and technology-enabled tools into high-quality, rigorous courses.”

Ball State also provides specialized services for online students, says Bott. Among them are dedicated advisors and concierge services to help students effectively and efficiently navigate their online college experience.

The U.S. News rankings are compiled annually and take into account such factors as student engagement, which includes retention and graduation rates; accreditation; class size; and the school’s deadline for earning a degree.

Rankings also consider admissions selectivity, peer reputation, faculty credentials and training, and the quality of the university’s student services and technology.

Further details about the rankings and how they were determined are available at the U.S. News website:

Ball State offers more than 60 online degrees and certificates and each year serves more than 10,000 students who are enrolled in online courses or programs. More about Ball State’s online and distance education offerings can be found at

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