StraighterLine Recognized as Trendsetter in Higher Ed

StraighterLine Recognized as Trendsetter in Higher Ed

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StraighterLine Named 2024 EdTech Trendsetter Award Winner

WASHINGTON, D.C. (April 5, 2024)  -- StraighterLine, the leading provider of high-quality, affordable online courses has been awarded the 2024 EdTech Trendsetter Award in the higher education category for EdTech Digest’s annual EdTech Awards. StraighterLine is recognized for setting the trend of “hacking education” and putting the power of higher education back into the student’s control by providing a flexible and affordable pathway to a degree. StraighterLine was also named a finalist in the EdTech Cool Tool Awards for Higher Education Solutions.

An edtech pioneer since 2008, StraighterLine was started as a solution to the rising costs of a college education. Before the rise of MOOCs, StraighterLine was the first non-college to offer ultra-affordable, high-quality online courses that were recognized by the American Council of Education (ACE) for transferable college credit. Still a solution to the rising costs of college, StraighterLine has grown its course catalog to 70+ online courses and helps tens of thousands of students hack their education every year. 

“At a time when college costs continue to skyrocket, student debt is ballooning, and America is questioning the value of college, many students are seeking alternative ways to save both time and money on their degree,” said Amy Smith, Ph.D., chief learning officer at StraighterLine.  “Students are taking control of their education, mapping out their degrees, and choosing flexible, affordable courses that will allow them to graduate faster and provide a strong return on their investment.”

In 2023, StraighterLine launched a Hack Education Scholarship contest to recognize a student who has demonstrated outstanding achievements and dedication in pursuing higher education through non-traditional means. StraighterLine awarded a $500 scholarship to Madison O'Neill, a licensed physical therapist assistant who graduated from Baker College in 2021. She is now pursuing a second degree at Baker in Healthcare Administration. She will finish her degree eight months faster and estimates she saved $10,000 by completing required courses online through StraighterLine.

O’Neil is not the first student to hack their education by using StraighterLine courses to save them time or money. Kara Prado earned a bachelor’s degree in business in under three years and paying entirely out of pocket. With careful planning, several spreadsheets, and hard work, she estimates it cost her approximately $8,200 to earn her bachelor’s degree from Thomas Edison State University, and she never incurred student debt along the way.

“StraighterLine is honored to receive the 2024 EdTech Trendsetter Award. The real winners are our students who are working hard to achieve their dream of a college degree while taking initiative to earn credit on their time and at their pace through StraighterLine,” said Smith.

The EdTech Awards were established in 2010 to recognize, acknowledge, and celebrate the most exceptional innovators, leaders, and trendsetters in education technology. This year’s finalists and winners were narrowed from the larger field and judged based on various criteria, including: pedagogical workability, efficacy and results, support, clarity, value, and potential.

To learn more about StraighterLine’s courses and pathways, visit

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