Saint Louis University is committed to providing engaging, high-quality distance education that aligns with federal regulations and accreditation requirements, and that demonstrates fidelity to SLU's Jesuit educational values.
Essential Features of a Jesuit Distance Education
Historically, a Saint Louis University education has been largely residential and in person. As we expand distance education offerings, we must do so with purpose and ensure those offerings are firmly rooted in our Jesuit values and traditions.
A Jesuit education, at its essence, is humanistic — both in the content of our curricula and in the learning experiences we create for and with students. In classrooms, labs, clinics, and communities, we center personal attention and relationships. We commit to an ethos of cura personalis in our work with students, and we do so as an integral part of — not as an additive to — our commitments to academic rigor, intellectual inquiry, creative exploration, and scholarly investigation. Essential to our humanistic approach is a commitment to educational equity — creating interactive, inclusive learning environments in which all learners may thrive and meet our standards of excellence.
A Jesuit education, then, is not delivered. It is facilitated — through reciprocal, learning-focused, transformative relationships between instructors and students. As the Ignatian Pedagogical Paradigm makes clear, all learning is: situated within a particular context, facilitated through intentionally designed experiences, grounded in consistent habits of reflection, practiced and applied through purposeful actions, and refined and strengthened through regular evaluation. This means distance education offerings at SLU must do more than present content, which (while important) cannot alone achieve the human-centered, intellectually active education we are called to provide.
Therefore, to ensure fidelity with our Jesuit values, all distance education offerings at SLU should be characterized by the following priorities in their design: presence, interaction, inclusion, community, transparency, equity, reflection, structure, and support. Importantly, these priorities also are consistent with the research on effective practice in distance education and with U.S. Department of Education regulations and Higher Learning Commission accreditation standards.
Distance Education Offerings at SLU
SLU offers a variety of distance courses and distance programs. The primary format for distance education at SLU is online asynchronous. However, some programs also offer courses in online synchronous and dual-mode formats.