Seismic Shifts in Distance Ed Regulations: Gauging Department of Education Rulemaking

  • Timezone : US/Mountain
  • Date : March 20, 2024 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
  • Meeting Type : Webcast

Did you feel that quake? In its recent rulemaking, the U.S. Department of Education proposed major changes that will cause institutions to check how the shifting sands will affect their distance education offering and their provision of digital books. In brief, these changes are huge. 

The U.S. Department of Education’s goals are to protect students as consumers and to ensure that federal financial aid funds are spent appropriately. We applaud those goals, but are still trying to decipher the possible impact on students, faculty, and staff.  

The WCET and SAN policy team provided updates on the Department’s proposals, which included:  

  • limiting greatly state authorization reciprocity benefits,  
  • eliminating “inclusive access” programs that include books and resources in tuition and fees, 
  • requiring attendance taking for all distance education courses, and 
  • categorizing all distance education programs as a “virtual location.”  


Van Davis

Chief Strategy Officer, WCET

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Cheryl Dowd

Senior Director, State Authorization Network & WCET Policy Innovations

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Russ Poulin

Executive Director, WCET & Vice President for Technology-Enhanced Education, WICHE


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