IU undergraduate students are eligible to take one online course per semester from six other schools in the Big Ten Academic Alliance during the 2020-21 academic year.
The fees and tuition costs associated with the selected classes will be waived for students in participating schools if they choose to take one of these classes.
“The new Big Ten Academic Alliance initiative is designed to enhance educational opportunities for students during the COVID-19 crisis,” an IU press release stated.
The institutions involved are University of Maryland, Michigan State University, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, The Ohio State University, Pennsylvania State University and Rutgers University-New Brunswick.
The course options cover a number of topics, ranging from design thinking and creativity to insect biology.
The program will also work with IU’s increase in the credit hours available for students’ tuition costs from 36 to 40 under the flat tuition rate. While this increase was made before the initiative, it will work alongside the new Big Ten program.
“Students may now take up to 40 credit hours across the fall and spring semesters, as well as the new winter session,” the release stated.
While this is the first year of the new program, IU is interested in offering this opportunity for future semesters.
“It’s great to have, given the circumstances, with tuition and fees waived from these courses. We would certainly consider trying to continue this,” Chuck Carney, IU spokesperson, said.
IU is optimistic on the program's development, Carney said.
“It’s the inaugural cohort, and we have seven Big Ten institutions that are a part of this, so there’s always room for growth,” Carney said.