The arrangement represents a “step-change in the provision of distance and online learning in the UK”, the Midlands university claims, and will see the institution develop three master’s programmes aimed at the professional development market.
The courses, including a master’s in public administration and one in business administration, will be designed to offer “those seeking professional development the same quality learning experience and qualifications they would expect from a full-time course”, the university said, but “with flexibility to learn online anywhere in the world”. The MBA will carry Birmingham Business School accreditation.
Wiley will bring existing expertise of managing distance learning programmes, help advise on the curriculum and also provide a round-the-clock technical help desk for students.
Vice-chancellor David Eastwood said the alliance would allow Birmingham to offer “exciting new modes of learning and teaching”.
Stephen Smith, president and chief executive officer of Wiley, added: “We are extremely excited about our relationship with the University of Birmingham. It is a tremendous opportunity to partner with a prestigious Russell Group institution and help expand its brand and programmes to new markets through high-quality distance learning experiences.”
The three new master’s programmes will launch in September 2015.