The University Mission: Can it be Reimagined for Online Learning?

Concurrent Session 6
HBCU Leadership Equity and Inclusion

Session Materials

Brief Abstract

Is fulfilling the University Mission Im(possible) online?  One colleague says, “yes”, the other says, “no”?  What do you think? The facilitators represent an HBCU and an online, for-profit university. Join us for an interactive presentation and lively discussion as we review whether your online programs align with your university’s mission.


Dr. Frederica Hendricks-Noble is the Program Coordinator for the Behavioral Health Leadership Program in Industrial and Organizational Psychology at Walden University. She has been teaching and learning online for over 10 years. She loves helping students and colleagues navigate the digital landscape in higher education. She has developed both fully online and hybrid courses for the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences at Walden. In 2018, she was selected to be an Online Learning Consortium's IELOL fellow.
Avila Hendricks is the Director of the Bachelor of Liberal Studies (BLS) program and Professor of Education at Lincoln University of Missouri. Dr. Hendricks received her doctorate from the University of Missouri-Columbia in Higher and Adult Education. Her M.A. in Educational Administration from Southeast Missouri State University, and her B.A. from Vassar College. Dr. Hendricks has been a certified Quality Matters Reviewer for the improvement of online course delivery since 2016. As an OLC- Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) Summit member, Dr. Hendricks is currently immersed in sharing practices and strategies for reducing the costs of instructional materials for students through the use of Online Education Resources (OER).

Extended Abstract

Session facilitators will compare how the institutional mission of a Historically Black College and University (HBCU) is similar to that of a for-profit, online university. The competitive and ever-changing landscape of higher education has caused for-profit universities to fundamentally reimagine the online learning environment.  HBCUs and other traditional institutions, can learn from for-profit, online universities how to reassess their missions and strategies in order to overcome challenges and improve the quality of online course delivery - or risk being left behind. The facilitators will share their experiences and discuss solutions for developing online programs that align with the university mission.   

Research conducted by the Online College Plan, identified factors that determine a successful online program.  These factors include, quality (i.e., accreditation) and flexibility (i.e., availability of asynchronous courses), both can be directly related to the institutional mission.  

During this interactive session participants will access and review their institutional mission statements.  We will structure the Q & A around helping participants recognize whether their online programs reflect their university’s mission statement and support the research outcomes for effective online learning.