Thomas Edison State College: Distance Learning Programs In-Depth

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Trenton, New Jersey

Distance Learning Program

Thomas Edison State College offers one of the most highly regarded, comprehensive distance learning programs in the United States. Adults may choose from more than 190 distance learning courses, including online classes. Students also take tests and submit portfolios to demonstrate and earn credit for college-level knowledge they already have and may transfer credits earned at other accredited institutions.

Delivery Media

Distance education courses are provided through several options, including Thomas Edison State College courses offered through the mail and online. Also available are online credit-by-examination e-Pack® courses, which allow students to prepare for a comprehensive final examination by taking a series of chapter quizzes delivered via the Internet.

Programs of Study

Thomas Edison State College offers fifteen associate, baccalaureate, and master's degrees in more than 100 areas of study. Undergraduate degrees offered include the Associate in Applied Science; Associate in Science in Management; Associate in Science in Applied Science and Technology; Associate in Arts; Associate in Science in Natural Science and Mathematics; Associate in Science in Public and Social Services; Bachelor of Arts; Bachelor of Science in Applied Science and Technology; Bachelor of Science in Business Administration; Bachelor of Science in Health Sciences, a joint-degree program with the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (UMDNJ) School of Health Related Professions (SHRP); Bachelor of Science in Human Services; and Bachelor of Science in Nursing.

Each undergraduate degree requires work in general education, the area of study, and elective subjects. Students are encouraged to work in conjunction with one of the College's program advisers to develop an individual program plan.

In addition, the College offers three online master's programs. The Master of Science in Human Resources Management (M. S.H.R.M.) degree serves human resources professionals who wish to become strategic partners in their organizations. This program uses a cohort model and is designed to position human resources professionals as leaders within their organizations. The 36-semester-hour program provides practitioners with technical human resources skills in staffing, providing professional development, managing organizational culture, and measuring and rewarding performance. The Master of Science in Management (M.S.M.) degree program serves employed adults with professional experience in management. It integrates the theory and practice of management as it applies to diverse organizations. The College's Master of Arts in Professional Studies (M.A.P.S.) degree program provides working professionals an opportunity to study the liberal arts from an applied perspective.

Special Programs

Thomas Edison State College's Military Degree Completion Program (MDCP) serves military personnel worldwide and was developed to accommodate the special needs of military personnel whose location, relocation, and time constraints make traditional college attendance difficult, if not impossible. The program allows students to engage in a degree program wherever they may be stationed and receive maximum credit for military training and education. Thomas Edison State College is a partner college for the Navy College Program Distance Learning Partnership and the Navy College Program Afloat College Education (NCPACE) and is a participant in the Army University Access Online (eArmyU) program.

The College's unique Degree Pathways Program allows community college students and graduates to complete a baccalaureate degree at home, in the workplace, or at their local two-year college. The Degree Pathways Program lets community college students and graduates make a smooth transition directly into a Thomas Edison State College baccalaureate program by transferring up to 80 credits toward the 120 credits needed for a baccalaureate degree. The program provides coordinated support in admissions, academic programming, advisement, registration, and the sharing of technologies. Students who have earned an associate degree within the past five years or are six months from completing an associate degree are eligible for the Degree Pathways Program. Students may continue to take classes and use technologies that are available at their community or county college as they move closer to the 80-credit limit of the 120 credits required for a baccalaureate degree.

Thomas Edison State College has also developed an 18-credit certificate in fitness and wellness services.

Thomas Edison State College specializes in providing flexible, high-quality educational opportunities for self-directed adults. One of New Jersey's twelve senior public institutions of higher education, the College offers fifteen associate, baccalaureate, and master's degrees in more than 100 areas of study. Students earn degrees through a variety of rigorous academic methods, including documenting college-level knowledge they already have and completing independent study courses. Identified by Forbes magazine as one of the top twenty colleges and universities in the nation in the use of technology to create learning opportunities for adults, this college is a national leader in the assessment of adult learning and a pioneer in the use of educational technologies. Founded in 1972, Thomas Edison State College is regionally accredited by the Commission on Higher Education of the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools.

Student Services

Academic advisement is provided to enrolled students by the College's Advisement Center, which assists students in integrating their learning style, background, and educational goals with the credit-earning methods and programs available. Students may access advisement through in-person appointments or through the Advisement Phone Center. They also have 24-hour access through fax and e-mail.

Credit Options

Students have the opportunity to earn degrees through traditional and nontraditional methods and use several convenient methods of meeting degree requirements, depending upon their individual learning styles and preferences. Once a student is enrolled in a specific degree program, an evaluator determines the number of credits the student has already earned and fits those into the degree program requirement.

Credit-earning options for nondegree students benefit individuals who would like to earn credit through examinations, prior learning assessment, and Thomas Edison State College courses. Students may do so by paying the appropriate fee for these programs. An application to the College is not required to take advantage of these nondegree, credit-earning options.

Credit Banking is for students who wish to document college-level learning and consolidate college-level work into a Thomas Edison State College transcript. Credits transcribed under the Credit Banking program may or may not apply to a degree program at Thomas Edison State College.

The College grants credit for current professional licenses or certificates that have been approved for credit by the College's Academic Council. Students must submit notarized copies of their license or certificate and current renewal card, if appropriate, to receive credit. A list of licenses and certificates approved for credit may be found in the College's Undergraduate Prospectus.


There are approximately 300 mentors at Thomas Edison State College. Drawn from other highly regarded colleges and universities, mentors provide many services, including assessment of prior knowledge and advisement.


Adults 21 years of age or older who are seeking an associate, baccalaureate, or master's degree and are high school graduates are eligible to become Thomas Edison State College students. Because Thomas Edison State College delivers high-quality education directly to students wherever they live or work, students may complete degree requirements at their convenience. There are two brief residency requirements for the organizational leadership professional focus area of the Master of Science in Management degree. A computer is required to complete graduate degrees and to take undergraduate online courses.

Tuition and Fees

Tuition is payment for all costs directly associated with the academic delivery of a Thomas Edison State College education. Fees are designated as payment for administrative services and for materials used by students for courses and other activities. Thomas Edison State College offers one annual tuition plan, the Comprehensive Tuition Plan, for students who want access to all components of the tuition package. For those students who have determined that their particular situation is one where only components of the Comprehensive Tuition Plan are required, the College offers the Enrolled Options Plan. A complete listing of tuition and fees is included in the College's information packet and is available by calling the Office of Admissions or by visiting the College Web site.

Financial Aid

Thomas Edison State College participates in a number of federal and state aid programs. Eligible students may receive Federal Pell Grants or federal education loans such as the Federal Stafford Student Loan (subsidized and unsubsidized). Eligible New Jersey residents may also tap a variety of state grant and loan programs. Students may use state aid to meet all or part of their college costs, provided they are taking at least 12 credits per semester. Detailed information about the financial aid process may be found in the financial aid packet, which is available from the Office of Financial Aid & Veterans' Affairs or on the College Web site. To receive this information, students may contact the office (telephone: 609-633-9658; e-mail: [email protected]).


Office of Admissions
Thomas Edison State College
101 West State Street
Trenton, New Jersey 08608-1176
Phone: 888-442-8372 (toll-free)
Fax: 609-984-8447
E-mail: [email protected]
Web site:


Students may apply to Thomas Edison State College by mail or fax or through the College Web site. The Office of Admissions assists potential applicants in determining whether Thomas Edison State College suits their particular academic goals.

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Thomas Edison State College: Distance Learning Programs In-Depth

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