For more than a decade, The University of Alabama has been delivering flexible, innovative online degree programs to students around the world.
Now, the program is poised to reach even more individuals after changing its name from Bama by Distance to The University of Alabama Online.
“Students said the title Bama by Distance is confusing,” said Mandy Johnson, director for marketing and recruitment for UA Online. “They didn’t know if it was an online program or something else.”
Amy Nichols, a content coordinator for UA Online, said they conducted an assessment with students, faculty and staff who were involved with online programs at the Capstone. During the assessment, focus groups and AB testing, they compared UA Online to Bama by Distance. The results were clear. UA Online performed much better.
“We want to make sure that people … are aware that we provide access to Alabama’s same legendary education offerings online as they would receive in person.”
“We’re not making this name change to get more clicks; we’re doing it because we want to make sure that people who work full time, are parents or have other commitments that prevent them from enrolling in person are aware that we provide access to Alabama’s same legendary education offerings online as they would receive in person. It’s the same degree,” Nichols said.
The changes, which have already been made to the website and UA Online’s social media handles – @UAOnline on Twitter and @uofalabamaonline on Instagram and Facebook — reflect a change of the times as well.
Nichols said when the program was created, online degree programs were relatively new for established institutions. Now, online learning is widely recognized as a premier education option.
“Nowhere does your degree say online or distance. It just says The University of Alabama.”
The University of Alabama, part of The University of Alabama System, is the state’s flagship university. UA shapes a better world through its teaching, research and service. With a global reputation for excellence, UA provides an inclusive, forward-thinking environment and nearly 200 degree programs on a beautiful, student-centered campus. A leader in cutting-edge research, UA advances discovery, creative inquiry and knowledge through more than 30 research centers. As the state’s largest higher education institution, UA drives economic growth in Alabama and beyond.