Over the past few years, there has been a growing trend toward providing courses for credit through Continuing Education. Currently, there are three basic models for providing credit through CE.
- CE with academic authority. This model exists when continuing education is offered through an existing academic department and when the offerings are generally consistent with other courses offered by the department. The differences most likely occur in the hours which the course is offered, the characteristics of participating students, and sometimes format. However, the academic requirements of the course are consistent with the traditional departmental offerings.
- CE with narrowly focused mission. This model often applies to community college programs and/or to professional development courses offered through four-year institutions when the offerings are not part of the curriculum for a degree. In this model, CE will often partner with an academic department to assure academic rigor and content in order to establish the worthiness of the course to carry academic credit.
- Entrepreneurial. In this model, enterprise entities, either within or outside of the institution, partner with the academic unit to provide credit-worthy learning experiences. Credit is conferred by the academic partner.There are a growing number of examples, such as: LERN/USD Master’s Degree Partnership, or corporate/academic partnerships where credit-bearing courses are delivered at the corporate location for both professional development and degree pursuant purposes.