Ideas

Idea to Explore: Variable Credit Pricing

Idea:

Reduce the cost per credit for courses offered during low utilization periods of time and/or location – spring, summer, early morning and evenings, and weekends.

Why?

Lowering the cost of credits during low utilization periods makes college more affordable, enables access for students with work or family obligations, increases facility utilization and generates revenue.

Discussion:

U-M utilizes substantial, and costly, physical and human resources to support the academic enterprise. These resources are most fully utilized from approximately 10am to 5pm on weekdays during the fall/winter seasons. By lowering the cost of courses offered during other periods of time, U-M would reduce the cost of college for students while generating increased revenue and utilization levels. Students holding full-time or multiple jobs would benefit most from this approach given their need to take evening or weekend courses. Risks include a large migration of students to these lower credit time periods and/or insufficient demand to support the increased variable cost of additional faculty/facility utilization. Variable Credit Pricing might also be applied to courses offered on the U-M digital platform.

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