The University of Arkansas at Monticello has received approval for its first 100 percent online undergraduate degree program.

The UA Board of Trustees and the Higher Education Coordinating Board have approved a bachelor of science degree in education studies, which will be offered totally online. The non-licensure program may be taken by anyone but is designed for non-traditional students unable to return to school and for public school paraprofessionals.

Paraprofessionals will have a route to licensure following completion of the online degree through the UAM Teacher Residency Program, which includes two semesters teaching with a provisional license while under the supervision of a licensed instructor. Other graduates may pursue a teaching license in the master of arts in teaching (MAT) program.

“This is a wonderful opportunity for those who face barriers that prevent them from participating in a traditional education degree program,” said Dr. Peggy Doss, dean of the UAM School of Education. “This degree program will prepare individuals with the necessary knowledge of content and pedagogical skills for post-baccalaureate admission to alternative licensure route programs.”

The online program may be completed in four years or less. “This program provides additional options for anyone who would like to teach,” said Dr. Jimmie Yeiser, provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs. “The opportunity to complete an undergraduate degree online will open doors for those who are unable to attain a degree any other way.”