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Oklahoma universities featured in ranking of online higher education programs

U.S. News and World Report released its 2013 Best Online Education Programs ranking Tuesday. This year's list is the second of its kind the publication has released, and the first to assign numerical ranks to schools on the list.
by Silas Allen Published: January 17, 2013

Cameron University Provost John McArthur said the university began offering an online European master's of business administration in 1999, and launched its undergraduate programs in 2001.

Initially, the program was targeted at military students, he said. Many of the university's students are military service members stationed at nearby Fort Sill, and online courses give those students a way to continue taking classes when they transfer to other military installations.

Although the online courses are still popular among service members, McArthur said, military students no longer make up the majority of students in the program. Today most of the students live within 25 miles of Lawton. Often, he said, those students also take classroom-based courses, but enroll in online courses because they're more convenient.

“They're mix-and-matching,” he said. “I am amazed at the number of students who live in the dorms and are taking online classes.”

Oklahoma State University's Spears School of Business ranked No. 37 on the business graduate degree program list. Larry Crosby, dean of the school, said online courses were an extension of the university's land grant role.

“We believe in giving smart, dedicated and accomplished individuals a pathway to further professional development regardless of their situation or where they might live,” Crosby said. “It is the OSU way.”

Cameron, Mid-America Christian University and Southern Nazarene University were also included in the ranking of graduate programs in business, but the schools' ranks weren't published. Likewise, OSU was included in a listing of graduate programs in engineering, but its rank wasn't published.