How & Why Vanderbilt Partners with OPMs

  • What is an online program manager (OPM)?

    An OPM is a third-party service provider that supports higher education institutions in offering online learning programs. (Gartner)

  • Why does Vanderbilt University work with OPMs?

    Vanderbilt University works with OPMs to leverage their expertise in online education and technology-enabled learning. This collaboration allows us to deliver high-quality online programs that align with our academic standards while reaching a broader audience beyond traditional campus boundaries. As we continue to build our internal capacity for supporting online education, OPMs offer relevant resources and capabilities needed to deliver effective and engaging online programs.

  • How does working with OPMs benefit Vanderbilt University?

    Working with OPMs provides Vanderbilt University with several benefits, including accelerated program development, access to advanced technological infrastructure, marketing and enrollment support, and the ability to scale online offerings efficiently. This collaboration also allows us to focus on our core mission of providing exceptional education and research while tapping into OPMs’ specialized resources.

  • How does Vanderbilt University ensure the quality of online programs developed with OPMs?

    Vanderbilt University maintains stringent quality control over all online programs developed in collaboration with OPMs. Our faculty work closely with the OPM to design and review curriculum, assessments, and learning materials. Regular assessments and reviews are conducted to ensure that the academic integrity and quality of the programs are consistent with Vanderbilt's standards.

    Across all OPM-supported programs at Vanderbilt, Vanderbilt has maintained control of key decisions, including:

    • Tuition
    • Accreditation
    • Curriculum
    • Admissions standards and decisions
    • Graduation requirements
    • Faculty hiring
    • Student instruction
    • Program size
    • Financial aid decisions
  • Do OPMs control the academic content of Vanderbilt's online programs?

    No, academic content and curriculum development remain under the control of Vanderbilt University's faculty. OPMs collaborate with our faculty to transform their expertise into effective online learning experiences, but final decisions regarding curriculum, assessments, and instructional approaches rest with Vanderbilt's academic leadership.

  • Can I trust the data security and privacy of online programs offered through OPM partnerships?

    Absolutely. Vanderbilt University places a high priority on data security and privacy. Our contractual relationships with OPMs involve rigorous data protection measures to ensure that student information and online interactions are secure and compliant with industry standards and regulations.