An initial study of the Capital Region to test the market for a bachelor’s degree completion program found “moderate demand” for such a program, though the potential target market is “significant.” The study was done for LSU’s continuing education department by Boston-based higher education research and consulting firm Eduventures Inc. Bachelor’s degree completion programs are designed for working adults who attended college without graduating but want to complete their bachelor’s, or those who’ve earned a two-year associate’s degree but want to get their bachelor’s.
Though several regional competitors—Tulane and Nicholls State, for instance—offer bachelor’s completion programs or some type of adult-oriented undergraduate degree programs, none of them target East Baton Rouge and surrounding parishes, according to the report.
Even so, the competition presented by the existing programs might make it challenging for a new program from LSU to try to break into the market. On the other hand, employer feedback indicates a preference for a bachelor’s degree completion program that includes general business courses, while the only institution in the region offering an adult-focused bachelor’s degree program focused on business is the for-profit University of Phoenix-Louisiana.
The report recommended that any LSU bachelor’s completion program should be 100% online or a hybrid of online and live classroom in order to differentiate itself from competitors. To be successful, the program should also feature competitive tuition rates compared to regional offerings and have a clear Web-based marketing message to attract potential students, according to the study.—Steve Clark