WASHINGTON, DC—The American Council of Trustees and Alumni announced today that it expects to award “A” grades to two new curricular programs from StraighterLine, an innovator in online college courses outside the accreditation structure. This solid liberal arts core—with credits that transfer to dozens of colleges nationwide—will be available in 2013 for less than $2000.
ACTA currently rates more than 1000 regionally-accredited nonprofit institutions around the country on the strength of their core in the What Will They Learn?™ study, awarding “A” grades for institutions that require 6-7 of the following courses: composition, literature, American history or government, economics, math, science and intermediate foreign language.
“A strong general education program is central to students’ success by providing fundamental skills and knowledge that will prepare them for engaged citizenship and effectiveness in the workforce,” said Anne Neal, ACTA president. “But we realize that many students aren’t able to enroll in traditional colleges due to rising costs, time constraints and other factors. ACTA is proud to help StraighterLine make a strong credit-bearing core more accessible.”
The first program will be a group of self-paced asynchronous courses that fulfill the ACTA “A” requirement with six core requirements: composition, literature, American government/history, economics, math and science. The second program will cover the same subject areas, plus foreign language, and will be taught by distinguished faculty identified and supported by ACTA.
“While ACTA’s focus remains on traditional institutions, working pro bono with StraighterLine complements ACTA’s message of access, quality, affordability and completion at America’s colleges and universities,” said Dr. Michael Poliakoff, director of the What Will They Learn?™ study.
Through this initiative, ACTA expects to expand its message about the importance of an affordable liberal arts core to corporations, students, high schools, universities and a yet-wider public.