Market Research

The Office of Online Lerning employs a non-biased, third-party market research company to provide information on the current market viability of an online program at no cost to the academic home. Studies provide valuable insights that can be used to reduce the risk to a college of investing in any given online program. The college and faculty requesting the market research work collaboratively with the Office of Online Learning Marketing Manager to inform the research to be conducted by the third-party service.

Request market research

Forward Funding

Applying for First Year Forward Funding

New programs that have been both approved by the University Council to offer an undergraduate or graduate program or certificate in the online format and have an officially approved tuition e-rate may opt to apply for first-year funding. These funds are intended to offset or support start-up expenses incurred as a result of new program development.

Based on enrollment projections, deans may request an advance against the expected online differential earnings for up to three (3) consecutive semesters. If the actual online differential collected is lower than the amount requested, the college/school will pay back the amount of overage requested in the next fiscal year. The requested funds will be amended in the college/school's budget in the first year of operation and may span across two fiscal years in order to cover the three consecutive semesters.

Graduate Program Request for First Year Funding Form (pdf)

Undergraduate Program Request for First Year Funding Form (pdf)

Online Course Approval (e-suffix)

The UGA Office of Curriculum Systems manages the Course Approval Process Automation (CAPA) system for all course approvals. Online courses that are considered fully online (95% or more of the instruction is conducted online) use the course approval process to obtain an e-suffix designation.

Courses require approval to be offered through distance education and will require and e-suffix. Approval will follow the established course approval process. Per Board of Regents' policy, all programs offered through distance education require approval as an External Degree. External Degree proposals will be submitted by deans of respective schools or colleges or directors of institutes directly to the Office of the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost. Graduate program proposals will be reviewed by the University Curriculum Committee and subsequently forwarded with a recommendation to the University Council for consideration. University Council recommendations on proposals are forwarded to the Office of the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost who will transmit the same to the President of the University for consideration. The President will transmit proposals to the Board of Regents with his or her recommendation. Board of Regents approval is required for External Degree programs. In addition, until approval is acquired, no department/college/division may advertise a distance learning course/program in any way.

The department/college/division should log into the Course Approval Process Automation (CAPA) system, here you will submit your proposal for your course/program.

The e-suffix standards will be used for online learning (distance education) courses in which more than 95% is taught online. When entering your e-suffix course in the CAPA system, click the button next to Online Learning Course.

For more information on e-suffix courses, please email Office of Curriculum Systems or call 1 (706) 542-6358.

Deadlines for Submitting Course Applications are maintainted by the CAPA system.

Program Approval

The program approval process is managed by UGA’s Office of Curriculum Systems. 

Existing programs that wish to transition to online must complete the required proposal to obtain approval from the University to deliver the program online.

New online program proposals that have not been already approved for delivery on-campus require institution approval and Board of Regents approval.

Proposal forms and policies for online program approval can be found on Curriculum Systems' distance education page.

If you have any questions or would like additional information about the program approval process, contact:

Office of Curriculum Systems
319 New College
1 (706) 542-6358

e-Rate Approval

UGA's e-Rate for Approved Online Programs

The Board of Regents' policy on “Tuition for Distance Learning Courses and Programs” allows institutions to charge special tuition rates for programs offered online (95% or more of class contact time is conducted online). Board approval is not required if the rate is between the in-state and out-of-state tuition rate. UGA has policies for undergraduate and graduate programs.

Undergraduate e-rate policy (pdf)

Graduate e-rate policy (pdf)

Applying for the Tuition e-Rate

Departments must first be approved by the University Council to offer an undergraduate or graduate program or certificate in the online format.

Once a program is approved, the department may choose to request a tuition e-rate.  For graduate programs, the department may request the standard rate of $275 above base tuition or an alternate amount above base tuition. For undergraduate programs, departments may request a rate above the per-credit undergraduate tuition rate.

Graduate program e-rate Request Form (pdf)

Undergraduate program e-rate Request Form (pdf)

Assessing the Tuition e-Rate

  • Programs that are approved for online delivery are given a major code that is different from the code for on-campus degree delivery. Students are assessed the e-rate based on their major code.

  • Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) students in an online major will be assessed the e-rate differential above the in-state tuition.

  • Students coded in an online major will be assessed the e-rate for any course taken, regardless of course location (online or on campus).

  • Departments may allow a student to take an online course, regardless of whether they are in an online major. However, students will only be assessed the e-rate if they are in an online major.