California Southern University Joins European Association for Distance Learning

Feb 3, 2011 by University Communications

Dean of University's School of Behavioral Sciences Meets with European Leaders in Online Education

California Southern University has joined the European Association for Distance Learning (EADL), the leading association for European online universities, with member institutions from more than 20 European countries and representing more than 2.5 million students worldwide.

CalSouthern offers accredited online degree programs in business, psychology, and law, employing a proprietary online learning system. The University is a member of numerous professional and academic organizations and with an international student body and global alumni network, is honored to be an associate member of the EADL.

“EADL membership represents an exciting opportunity for CalSouthern,” says University President, Dr. Caroll Ryan. “The association provides a vibrant forum for the exchange of knowledge and best practices with many of the global leaders in distance learning. As one of only two American universities with EADL membership, CalSouthern looks forward to forging relationships with its European counterparts, contributing to this international exchange of information, and exploring new technologies and partnerships to further enhance the educational experience we provide our Learners.”

Dr. Barbara Grimes, of CalSouthern's School of Behavioral Sciences, attended the EADL Annual Conference in Oslo, Norway, where she and other CalSouthern representatives met with EADL President Dirk van der Mark. Universities from all over Europe were represented at the conference, many of which employ extremely sophisticated online education technologies. Leaders of a number of Western and Northern European universities expressed a keen interest in the CalSouthern curriculum, which offers a variety of academic programs that are unavailable to many students of European distance learning institutions.

Dr. Grimes also met with Dr. Zaza Tsotniashvili, Rector of the Republic of Georgia’s Gori University, to discuss the state of distance learning in Georgia and throughout Eastern Europe. In contrast to institutions in Scandinavia and Western Europe, which have leveraged an advanced technological infrastructure to establish a thriving and well-respected online education environment, universities in Eastern Europe face significant challenges to establish distance learning in a region in desperate need of education and specialized training. Dr. Tsotniashvili invited Dr. Grimes to visit Gori and deliver the keynote address at the Second International Conference: “New Trends in Education and Research,” to introduce attendees to CalSouthern’s education programs and innovative online education methodology.

“I was moved and humbled by my experience at Gori,” says Dr. Grimes. “For years, the people of Georgia have been plagued by violence and economic hardship. And yet their hunger for education is so strong. In many respects, Georgia is an isolated nation, and their education leaders recognize the enormous benefit online learning can provide, but they lack much of the required technology.”

As part of its ongoing efforts to bring distance learning opportunities to people across the world, CalSouthern has reached out to the U.S. Ambassador to Georgia, John R. Bass, to explore potential solutions for the lack of quality education available in Georgia and throughout Eastern Europe, and to help address the acute need for specialized training in a region which has long endured extreme trauma and suffering.

University Communications
California Southern University
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Irvine, CA 92620
(800) 477-2254, ext. 4205
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