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Partnership with Big Ten peers provides free online courses to IU Bloomington students

For Immediate Release Aug 3, 2020

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – Beginning this fall, undergraduate students at any participating Big Ten Academic Alliance university can take an online course from another participating Big Ten school each semester, with all tuition and fees waived for that course. The new Big Ten Academic Alliance initiative is designed to enhance educational opportunities for students during the COVID-19 crisis.

IU Bloomington Provost Lauren Robel
IU Bloomington Provost Lauren Robel.Photo by Eric Rudd, Indiana University

“Big Ten universities compete on the field, but until this fight against COVID-19 is won, we are united in the critical research to battle this virus, and united in the classroom,” said Lauren Robel, Indiana University Bloomington provost and executive vice president and chair of the Big Ten Academic Alliance board. 

Courses are available from IU as part of an inaugural cohort of seven Big Ten institutions for the 2020-21 academic year. Available courses through the alliance cover a wide variety of topics, including Supply Chain Security and Risk Management; Design Thinking and Creativity; Inequality: Determinants and Policy Remedies; Insect Biology; Introduction to the Built Environment; and Intro to Sports Marketing and Management.

In addition to IU Bloomington, participating institutions are:

  • University of Maryland
  • Michigan State University
  • University of Nebraska-Lincoln
  • The Ohio State University
  • Pennsylvania State University
  • Rutgers University-New Brunswick

IU Bloomington has also increased the number of credit hours undergraduate students can earn under the flat tuition rate. Students may now take up to 40 credit hours across the fall and spring semesters, as well as the new winter session.

“By increasing the number of credit hours available for our undergraduate students within the banded tuition rate, we’re giving them more flexibility to create the schedule that works best for them,” Robel said. “With the incredible opportunity through the Big Ten Academic Alliance as well as the increase in credit hours, we believe this will better help our students finish their degrees as well as afford them the opportunity to explore something new.”

Together, Big Ten universities educate over 600,000 students with almost 50,000 faculty. During spring 2020, Big Ten Academic Alliance universities kept students on track for graduation, quickly moving tens of thousands of courses online and graduating many thousands of students on time, despite the pandemic.

About the Big Ten Academic Alliance

The Big Ten Academic Alliance is the nation’s preeminent model for effective collaboration among research universities. For more than half a century, these world-class institutions have advanced their academic missions, generated unique opportunities for students and faculty, and served the common good by sharing expertise, leveraging campus resources, and collaborating on innovative programs. Governed and funded by the provosts of the member universities, Big Ten Academic Alliance mandates are coordinated by a staff from its Champaign, Illinois, headquarters.

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