Kentucky Virtual University
The Kentucky Virtual University (Kentucky Virtual Campus, KYVC)'s stated mission is to offer a student-centred, technology-based system for coordinating the delivery of postsecondary education that meets the needs of citizens and employers across the state of Kentucky, US. Its three primary functions are to:
- Be a clearinghouse for quality distance learning opportunities (primarily for certificate and degree programmes)
- Offer competency-based credentialing
- Deliver a single point of access to statewide student, library and academic support services
Lifelong learners and those living outside the US are included in the target user base. Credits and degrees are awarded by each participating college, university or institution, not by KYVC, although KYVC manages course selection and registration.
Approved by the Kentucky General Assembly in 1997 as Kentucky Virtual University (KYVU), what is now KYVC was launched officially in 1999, when nine pilot projects were brought online. The Kentucky Distance Learning Advisory Council (DLAC), established by the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education (CPE), works closely with the public and independent institutions of Kentucky to administer the KYVC. 'KYVC Coordinators' are located on site at each campus and agency office, and are responsible for the management and coordination of local KYVC activities. As of October 2007, eight full-time staff members worked for the campus and the Kentucky Virtual Library (http://www.kyvl.org/), which offers a virtual reference desk and online catalogs and databases. Its budget for 2007-08 was roughly US$5.5 million.
Residency requirements are quite common for KYVC programmes, although one of the criteria for KYVC support is that at least 75% of a programme's 'didactic portion' be offered at a distance.
31,035 Academic users were supported in the Fall of 2006. They were enrolled in 2,715 courses, across 127 different programmes.
As of Fall 2008, the KYVC web site's online course search engine was quite extensive and up to date (unlike that of many of its US state counterparts, which remain online but are no longer maintained).
The Kentucky Virtual Campus web site is at http://www.kyvu.org/
A full list of KYVC providers, including colleges, universities, and state agencies can be found at http://www.kyvu.org/learning/colleges-universities.asp
Most participating Kentucky institutions were using Blackboard for course delivery as of 2005-2006, with other systems such as ANGEL being phased out (following establishment of a Statewide Blackboard Consortium). A 24-hour help desk is available for all KYVC students.
Kentucky is described as the first state in the US to offer its residents a comprehensive package of online educational resources: a virtual university, a virtual high school (http://www.kvhs.org) and a virtual library, including research help from reference librarians (http://www.kyvl.org).
The KYVC4K12 initiative (Kentucky Virtual Campus for K-12 Students), under the direction of the Kentucky Virtual Campus (KYVC), offers primary and secondary school students an online curriculum targeted specifically for students from kindergarten through grade 12. KYVC4K12 uses the PLATO Web-based Learning Network.
The strategic plan for KYVC (2006-2009) is available at http://cpe.ky.gov/NR/rdonlyres/848EDA27-D0EA-4B12-B6C2-E29777B226A5/0/Sept_06KYVUStrategicPlan_Final_PrintableVersion_10206.pdf
A "Performance Report" for KYVC in 2006-2007 is available at http://cpe.ky.gov/NR/rdonlyres/D77F699A-AE00-4819-B676-626C816CA0A9/0/KYVCperformanceReport.pdf