What topics do online students study? It varies by region

New Yorkers study finance, Floridians study communications

Coursera analyzed data from more than 5 million students to identify geographic trends in online education. 

Across the board, business and computer science are the most popular topics for online study, the researchers discovered. But beyond that were some interesting differences by region. Coursera identified 12 regions where students are more likely to study certain subjects.

Some geographic trends you could probably predict:

  • Computer science: California, Oregon, and Washington;
  • Finance and management: Connecticut, New Jersey, and Massachusetts; and
  • Law and public policy: District of Columbia, Delaware, Maryland, North Carolina, and Virginia.

But others may be surprising:

  • Biology and medicine: Arizona, New Mexico, Idaho, Nevada, and Utah;
  • Education: Kansas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, and South Carolina; and
  • Language and communication: Florida and Hawaii.

(Ravipati, Campus Technology, 1/18; Coursera website, accessed 1/20).

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