Nichols is the only central Mass. college to be included in the 2019 ‘Best Online Bachelor’s Programs’ and ‘Best Online (Master’s) Business Programs’ rankings
By LORRAINE U. MARTINELLE
DUDLEY, Mass.—Nichols College is ranked as the leader among central Massachusetts-based schools in U.S. News & World Report’s national “2019 Best Online Bachelor’s Programs” and “Best Online Graduate Business Programs” ratings, which were released Jan. 15, 2019.
“On behalf of Nichols College, we are honored that U.S. News & World Report has recognized our robust online bachelor’s and master’s degree programs, which utilize an innovative HyFlex approach through which students are in the classroom either virtually or in person every week,” said Nichols College President Susan West Engelkemeyer, Ph.D. “These rankings validate the impactful business and leadership education Nichols College provides our students as well as the academic and industry expertise of our dedicated faculty and staff, who are committed to our students’ success.”
According to U.S. News & World Report Senior Data Analyst Eric Brooks and Chief Data Strategist Robert Morse, “For working adults with some college credit, completing a four-year degree online may be the most practical way to obtain the knowledge and credentials needed to boost their careers.”
Enter Nichols College’s Undergraduate Adult Education Program (UAEP), which offers competitive online Bachelor of Science in Business Administration degree concentration programs in accounting, general business, human resource management, management, and marketing. The curriculum consists of seven-week courses that concentrate the material usually covered over a full semester. Courses are taught by Nichols professors who are trained and skilled in maximizing students’ learning potential online.
“The U.S. News & World Report ‘best online program’ rankings are an important indicator of the value of the education Nichols College provides, because they consider both student success after graduation as well as the cumulative cost to reach graduation,” said Nichols College Academic Vice President and Professor Mauri Pelto, Ph.D. “The focus of each of our online courses is the interaction between students and faculty through simulations, action research projects, team case studies, video discussions, and problem-based learning.”
NICHOLS ONLINE GRADUATE PROGRAMS RANKED
Nichols is also the only central Massachusetts-based college—and in the top six among all Massachusetts private colleges—on the “Best Online Business Programs” rankings. This ranking assesses master’s-level business degree programs that are not MBA programs. U.S. News & World Report’s examples of non-MBA graduate business programs include degrees in accounting, finance, insurance, marketing and management.
In addition to offering an online (and on-campus) MBA—which U.S. News & World Report also included in its “Best Online MBA Programs” rankings—Nichols College Graduate & Professional Studies (GPS) also features master’s degree programs in accounting, counterterrorism studies, and organizational leadership.
“I’m delighted by the national recognition of Nichols College Graduate & Professional Studies online programs by U.S. News & World Report and by the fact that Nichols is the only central Mass.-based college ranked on the ‘Best Online Business’ list,” said GPS Executive Director Kerry Calnan. “It’s further proof for prospective and current students as well as our corporate and educational partners that everything we do at Nichols College is fueled by innovation and an entrepreneurial spirit—from the HyFlex technology that powers our flexible learning options to a unique emphasis on leadership and communication not normally found in master’s degree programs.”
Part of what makes Nichols’ industry-leading graduate programs competitive in the market is its HyFlex technology: all the convenience of online learning, with the benefits of a real-time classroom experience. Every week, students can choose whether they want to attend class on campus, or use HyFlex. Nichols graduate students choosing to connect to their real-time class via HyFlex use standard video conferencing software to participate in learning and collaborating. They can see and hear their professors and classmates, and vice versa. An intuitive app is used for assignments, resources, forums, and grades; and all reading is online as well, so students don’t have to pay for textbooks.
In determining the rankings, U.S. News & World Report’s methodology considered engagement between students and faculty; student excellence; the opinion of high-ranking academic officials in business; faculty credentials and training; and student services and technology.
Lorraine U. Martinelle is director of public relations and social media at Nichols College in Dudley, Mass.