Chapter 4. Institutional Issues in Online Education 
This chapter discusses the number of online courses and subject areas offered by the 
institutions and the number of online students they have. Finally, various categories of 
institutions that offer online education are presented and discussed. 
Number of Online Courses Per Institution 
Table 5 shows that a large number of the institutions offer quite few courses. As many as 30 
(23.1%) institutions report to have only one web course, and 60 (46.2%) institutions report to 
offer less than 5 courses. From this, one can infer that much of the activities are experimental 
and not pivotal for the institutions. 
Table 5. Distribution of institutions per number of courses 
Number of courses  Number of 
1 30
2 4 30
5 15 28
16 99 28
100  4
No answer 
Sum 130
Only four institutions reported to have 100 courses or more. These were The Open University 
of the Netherlands [54] with 360 courses, Universidad Politecnica de Madrid [83] with 200 
course, New York Institute of Technology On Line Campus [124] with 105 courses, and 
Maricopa Community Colleges [123] with 100 courses. 
The Open University of the Netherlands [54] (Case Study 4) (
) claims to 
have 360 courses and 2500 students. All courses have general web services, some more (fully 
Universidad Politecnica de Madrid (CEPADE) [83] (
) reports to have 
200 courses and 1600 students. CEPADE is the Business School from the Universidad 
Politecnica de Madrid (U.P.M.) and it is responsible for Master and Specialization courses on 
Enterprises Administration at distance, using the Internet. As support of the CEPADE Virtual 
Campus the FirstClass application is used, and virtual classrooms and study rooms are created 
for each course enabling the collaborative learning. The certification of CEPADE is provided 
by U.P.M and the center has been working on distance learning environments since 1972. 
Maricopa Community Colleges [123] (
) in the U.S. reports to 
have approximately 100 courses. Course material is provided on the web. Instruction, 
assignments and some of the examinations are conducted online using the FirstClass system 
which can be accessed via a web browser. The above site also has a  Visitor s Center  which 
gives access to sample lessons. The FAQ on online courses also provides background 
information for potential applicants. 



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