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U.S. News ranks UB’s education, nursing online programs among nation’s best

BUFFALO, N.Y. – Online programs in the University at
Buffalo Graduate School of Education and School of Nursing were
named to U.S. News World Report’s 2018 Best Online
Programs rankings.

The online programs offered by the Graduate School of Education
were ranked No. 15 in the nation in the Best Online Graduate
Education Programs rankings, earning a placement on the annual list
for the sixth consecutive year.

The School of Nursing’s online bachelor’s degree
program (RN-BS), which admitted its first class in 2012-13, was
ranked No. 60 in the Best Online Bachelor’s Programs
rankings. This is the program’s fourth consecutive year on
the list.

“GSE’s national ranking reflects our commitment to
providing top quality and rigorous online education
programs,” said Suzanne Rosenblith, PhD, professor and dean
of the Graduate School of Education.

School of Nursing Dean Marsha Lewis cites recent New York State
legislation requiring nurses to earn their bachelor’s degree
in nursing  (BSN) as confirmation of the growing need to
educate and train the future nursing workforce inside and outside
of the classroom.

“New York State has passed groundbreaking legislation
requiring RNs to obtain their BSN within 10 years of
licensure,” said Lewis, PhD, also a professor in the School
of Nursing.

“We expect that other states will follow suit recognizing
the benefits of expanding nursing education as a means to address
complex patient care needs resulting from shorter lengths of stay,
higher acuity and more sophisticated interventions.”

UB’s Graduate School of Education offers a variety of
fully online and hybrid programs. The school launched its first
online PhD program in 2015 and UB’s first massive open online
course (MOOC) on learning site Coursera in 2016.

“Our school has been offering fully online programs since
2001,” said Christine Kroll, PhD, assistant dean for online
education in the Graduate School of Education.

“While many institutions are shifting towards models of
teaching assistants or master courses developed by designers, our
program curricula and individual courses are designed and delivered
by our research faculty. This creates highly interactive, authentic
discourse between our faculty and students, builds relationships
between students and allows for a unique, immersive university

Kroll added that GSE faculty work together with online students
and engage in original online education research, continually
incorporating their latest findings into their teaching

The School of Nursing’s RN-BS program, which can be
completed in a one- or two-year sequence, builds upon the knowledge
and experience of licensed nurses while allowing participants to
maintain employment, said Susan Grinslade PhD, clinical professor
and assistant dean for undergraduate programs in the School of

“With a growing body of evidence to suggest that there is
a significant positive relationship between the number
baccalaureate-prepared nurses in the workforce and better quality
of care and patient outcomes, our program builds upon previous
knowledge to enhance quality and safety in today’s
challenging health care environment,” said Grinslade.

The School of Nursing also offers both an online
post-master’s to Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program
that educates established advanced practice nurses to deliver
expert care and innovate practice, and an online doctoral program
that prepares nurse scientists and academics who will contribute to
knowledge development, theory generation and hypothesis testing to
improve nursing practice outcomes and health care.

The U.S. News online rankings are based on five categories:
student engagement, student services and technology, faculty
credentials and training, admissions selectivity and peer
reputation. Online bachelor’s degree programs are not
weighted for admissions selectivity.

found for you by the Independence News Desk at

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