Faculty Compensation for Online Courses

As online courses and programs grow in prevalence in higher education, administrators must develop compensation models to properly incentivize faculty to develop and deliver online courses. The report compares faculty compensation structures for massive open online courses, graduate degree programs, and for-credit and non-credit certificate programs at five profiled institutions. This research includes the varying stipend amounts, royalties, and/or a course releases faculty receive to develop and deliver online content at profiled institutions.

Key observations from our research

1. Administrators at profiled institutions compensate faculty differently depending on the type of online offering.

2. Administrators consider faculty time commitment when determining compensation for course development and delivery.

3. Faculty at profiled institutions receive stipends ranging from $5,000 to $20,000 to develop and/or deliver online courses.

4. Faculty at Institution A, Institution B, and Institution E receive royalties from online courses.

5. Most administrators classify online course development as outside of a faculty member’s normal responsibilities.

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