At state universities around Ohio, residents older than 60 can expand their education by taking courses as part-time students or on a noncredit basis.
Older students take advantage of the program because they can take courses without attached tuition or fees.
“The typical student is in their late 70s, and it’s about a 50/50 split between males and females in the program,” Maryann Lape, the administrative coordinator of the 60+ program, said in an email.
There is no clear data about enrollment for the program on any of Ohio University’s campuses.
Most students enroll in the program to take classes they find enjoyable.
“As for the most popular class, it is definitely the art classes, many of the participants enjoy getting out and doing something that they feel is relaxing,” Lape said.
Students can take up to 11 undergraduate credits per term, but no online classes, Brenda Dorst, the Registrar Services supervisor, said in an email.
The noncredit basis of the program would not impact eligibility for accommodations through Student Accessibility Services, or SAS. SAS works with the student the same way they would with a student working through a traditional program.
“Oftentimes, we coordinate accommodations around graded activities. However, if the student was deaf and needed an ASL interpreter, or needed text materials in an alternative format, we would still coordinate those,” associate director for SAS Christy Jenkins said in an email.
Campus accessibility may affect enrollment for the 60+ program.
“I actually think one deterrent for those in the 60+ program, or just older community members who want to attend an event, is the difficulty in finding close parking to classes,” Diane Bouvier, associate director for the Office of University Accessibility, said in an email.