Idaho State University Distance Learning

Idaho State is a juggernaut of academics compared to most universities around the country. Nationally recognized for their excellence in medical sciences (it is the “state’s designated lead institution in health professionals and medical education”) and a big believer in distance education programs (they have online classes and several nontraditional education options), Idaho State University has a history of expansion and advancement to better serve students both young and old, near and far.

Located in Pocatello, Idaho (but with satellite locations in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho Falls, Boise, and Twin Falls), Idaho State was opened at the turn of the century (the last century, 1901). Though not a four year institution when it began, it quickly began offering them by 1947 and now offers Bachelor, Master, Doctorates, and certifications in more than 280 programs, with popular majors for its 15,500 students ranging to medical/research professions in Biology, Nursing, and Physics. The university houses seven different schools and is even looking to construct the first Medical School in Idaho.

Idaho State does have distance learning options, with a number of online classes every semester that go across academic disciplines, allowing people in any course to begin learning from the comfort of their own home. As with their research programs, distance learning at Idaho State keeps growing (they have been “innovators” in distance learning for years), making it easier for people to earn their degrees from home or around busy schedules. In addition to hybrid and online undergrad courses, there are degree and certification options for adult learners and graduate students. Through the virtual classrooms at ISU, students can attain degrees in fields with immediate needs, such as Emergency Management, a completely online program ending with a two year degree in a field that the US Department of Labor has named on its list of 20 Growing Professions in the US.

In addition, graduates looking for more education can attain their Master’s degree in several areas online, with extensive experiential work that can be completed at one of their four outreach centers as well as anywhere in the world (internship/hands on work can be done at approved locations around the globe). For instance, they offer an M.S. degree in Dental Hygiene in an online program that has students from 14 states and Canada. Created and taught by the same highly qualified professionals as traditional classes, the online MS is for any BS Dental graduate and can be completed in two years without ever stepping on to campus. Other online degree options include everything from an Associate’s in Nursing (which includes minimal, but intensive sessions on campus over 3-41/2 semesters based on past credit work) and an M.S. in Speech Pathology (again with limited campus work, but in summer sessions when interruptions would be at the lowest), and a PhD in Pharmacy. All online courses come with full technical and academic support at all times and faculty are informed and trained in how to deliver course materials online (distance learning innovation really is a point of pride here). There is also an Independent Study, distance learning collective with nearby Boise State and other Idaho colleges to allow online access to learning tools and nearly 100 college courses that learners can take at their own pace for credit or simple curiosity.

Whether through internship in nearby Salt Lake or Boise, research projects at any of its top of the line facilities, or taking in some of their fine arts and theater (there’s 123,000 square foot performing arts center), ISU offers an excellent education. With learning options for all ages and a picturesque location in the wooded hills of Idaho, ISU has the type of programs and setting to fulfill the educational desires of students both near and far.

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