Online university's MBA program gains official accreditation

Jones International University's MBA program was accredited last week, further extending the scope of the first full online university.

The North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Higher Education, decided the school's curriculum equaled that of a traditional university. The MBA can be customized with seven areas of specialization including: electronic commerce, information technology management, negotiation and conflict management, and project management.

"It is designed to meet the needs of adults worldwide because it's totally online. Most other MBA programs have some kind of residency requirements for a seminar or whatever, but it would be tough for one of students in Finland to get to our home institution in Colorado," JIU president Pamela Pease said.

Based in Englewood, Colo., JIU became the first fully online university to gain accreditation in March 1999. Courses begin each month and are available in either eight-week or 16-week formats.

Although JIU has no site-based or campus requirements, the MBA program includes courses designed by educators from University of California at Berkeley, the London School of Economics, Columbia University and more. The school launched a World Wide Web site on Monday (www.getmyMBA.com) to provide specific information on the program.

The university's faculty log on from the United States and around the world to teach their classes, which consist of no more than 25 students. Online workgroups, e-mail and other online forums are used to facilitate communication and cooperation amongst the school's student body, which includes pupils from more than 29 countries, Pease said.

More information on the school is available online at www.jonesinternational.edu.

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