The preponderance of the group model could come from conventional thinking that sustain
the semester and term system in traditional educational systems. Another possible reason is
that the institutions have a well considered perception that team work and collaborative
learning is hard to achieve with individual enrollment and progress. One can however argue
that many students will prefer individual flexibility and that the institutions many institutions
lack systems, structures, and competence on individual enrollment and progression. If so, one
may hypothesize that open universities and distance teaching institutions should be more
disposed of individual flexibility than traditional universities and colleges. However, the
analysis has not found evidence to support this hypothesis.
Group Enrollment and Progress
OnlineLearning.net <125> in the US is one example of an institution that has chosen a model
with little individual flexibility. Their courses have fixed start and finish dates. In addition,
they have due dates for each assignment. Many other institutions offer courses in which the
start and finish dates are fixed. Some examples among them are categorized as universities
<17>, <10>, <96>, university departments or centers, <30>, <76>, <69>, <97>, <99>, <103>,
<104>, <62>, <84>, <27>, colleges, <60>, open and distance teaching universities, <71>,
<80 82>, consortia, <109>, <38>, companies or corporations, <74>, <73>, and organizations
and associations <77>, <75>.
Several other institutions that offer courses in which the start and finish dates are fixed seem
to be restricted by or to prefer the traditional semester or term system:
In most of the courses at the French National Center for Distance Education (CNED)
<132>, enrolment is not flexible. It begins and ends on fixed dates, depending on the
The College of Education at Massey University <57> in New Zealand has fixed
enrolment. The 50 students are selected from five times as many applicants. They start at
the beginning of the academic year in January and work through the program in two
semesters per year.
At Griffith University <13> in Australia, the courses have all a fixed start time and a fixed
finish time in line with the normal university semester.
The Magee College at the University of Ulster <44> states that enrolment is conducted by
the university system and follows the academic year.
At the Napier University <107> in the UK, there are fixed start and finish dates in line
with normal university terms.
At the Bellevue Community College <111> in the US, the dates of the for credit courses
are in line with the traditional semesters. Students taking the non credit program must still
participate in set cohorts, but the dates are more flexible.
At the Pinelands High School <78> in South Africa, the courses have all a fixed start time
and a fixed finish time which is the same as the normal high school term.
In addition, some institutions have fixed enrollment dates, but there is some flexibility as
students can enroll two or more times a year:
At the Institute f r Rechtsinformatik <35> in Germany, the course is organized with a
fixed enrolment date and fixed progression and takes approximately 3 months to complete.
The course has been offered twice a year.