Australia's open university is to offer an Australian business degree to students in Moscow who will undertake their studies via the Internet, writes Geoff Maslen.
The project is the result of collaboration between the Russian Association for International Education and Open Learning Australia - which is run by a consortium of universities and provides off-campus courses to more than 20,000 Australians.
The scheme starts this month and organisers expect the development will lead to significant commercial opportunities for Australian higher education in Russia.
Russian students will use the Internet to access their lecturers in Australia and to transmit their assignments. OLA has an academic consultant in Moscow to assist with selection of students.
The Australian consortium has negotiated with six countries to provide its courses to offshore students. The University of Humberside is purchasing study materials for 15 first and second-year university units offered by Australian universities through OLA.
Humberside, which offers distance education units in central and eastern Europe, will incorporate the units into its degree programmes.
OLA is also collaborating with Warsaw's Pedagogical University to establish a Polish-Australian Open University in Poland. Australian universities will offer distance education courses across a number of regions in the country.