Hezel Associates Reports Wide Gaps In Opportunities For Online Learning In Asia

April 12, 2005

SYRACUSE, N.Y. – April 7, 2005 – Three key variables driving the U.S. education export to the rapidly-growing Asian e-learning market are government reform, technology and the English language, according to Hezel Associates, a consulting firm for the education sector. These findings are detailed in Hezel Associates’ report, Global E-learning Opportunity for U.S. Higher Education.

Across Asia, education systems experienced drastic changes in the number of students attending institutions of higher education and the opportunities available for them. South Korea, for example, recently revealed plans to reduce both the number of national universities and the number of students enrolling in those universities in an effort to improve quality. The country ranked number one on Hezel’s list of countries most receptive to the U.S. education export.

“While most countries now have a system of free public education in addition to private institutions, a gap in opportunity still exists,” explained Dr. Richard Hezel, president of Hezel Associates. “As a result, countries such as South Korea, India, China, and others send thousands of students to study in the United States and Europe each year. These countries may be ripe to import online learning.”

The report revealed that while more than 250 million people have access to the Internet, the penetration rate varies greatly. Korea boasted the highest penetration rate at 63.8%, while Pakistan predicts the highest growth rate, at 1,020%. The number of people speaking English also varies widely; while English is increasingly becoming part of the compulsory education system across the region, people in Thailand, Vietnam and Indonesia are less likely to speak it.

Global E-learning Opportunity for U.S. Higher Education is designed for higher education organizations, as well as investors, foundations and others. These groups can use the report to:

    — Predict future trends in global education
    — Understand which countries best align with organizational goals
    — Formulate strategies and identify appropriate places for investment or acquisition
A preview report is now available on Hezel Associates Web site at http://www.hezel.com/globalreport

Headquartered in Syracuse, N.Y., Hezel Associates provides research, evaluation and strategic services to national and international clients in education, technology, publishing and business. The firm has earned a distinguished national reputation as a leading expert in distance education research including their latest report, The Global E-learning Opportunity for U.S. Higher Education. Clients such as the U.S. Department of Education, the World Health Organization, Habitat for Humanity International, the Public Broadcasting Service and Regis University have relied on Hezel Associates’ recommendations to make strategic decisions and create and implement policies. The company was founded in 1987 by Dr. Richard T. Hezel, a leading research-oriented consultant in the field of education technology. For further information about Hezel Associates, visit www.hezel.com