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Go take the quiz! You've got to focus in a bit more! I seem to remember that the circumference of the earth along the equator is roughly 24, Well, there's degrees in a circle, so if we divide 24, How's that! And furthermore, the distance between two lines of latitude, from 0 degrees to 1 degree north, is also But what happens to the distance between lines of longitude as you go north or south away from the equator?! I can see that the lines of longitude get closer and closer together towards the poles!

At the equator, the distance between 15 and 30 degrees W longitude is quite a lot! But as you follow those two longitude lines towards the poles, the distance between them shrinks down to zero! All the lines of longitude actually meet at the poles!

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So really, 'longitude' has no meaning when you're at the poles! I don't think I'm gonna go to the poles! I'd be nowhere! And everywhere! In fact, the last time they were this closely spaced was in July and they will not appear so close together again until March Mark your calendars! Because it measures one-half degree in apparent size, some might think that the moon can be used to measure off angular distances, but this is far from the case. Indeed, a rising moon can sometimes appear absolutely enormous, yet an hour or two later it will appear to have shrunk to a considerably smaller size.

This strange effect has intrigued artists and puzzled psychologists for many years and has perplexed people since earliest historical times, such as Aristotle. No one seems to know exactly why this happens, though the most popular explanation is that the moon illusion is an optical illusion related to the Ponzo illusion in that the human mind judges an object's size based on its background with foreground objects such as trees and houses tricking our brain into thinking the moon is much bigger than it really is.

But even when it appears high in the sky, the moon looks "too big" to be one-half degree in width.


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And this illusion is not confined to the real sky, but is even evident in the "pretend universe" of a planetarium. When the very first projectors were designed and made to project the moon's image of one-half degree on the planetarium dome as it appears in the real sky, it was found that it appeared too small to be realistic although it was in actuality the correct angular size with respect to the background sky. To rectify this problem, engineers doubled the size of the projected moon image to one-degree, which presents a much more realistic appearance; one of the few places where accuracy was sacrificed for the sake of realism.

Similarly, the real moon appears much larger against the real sky. Try this mental experiment some night when you can see both the Big Dipper and moon in the sky at the same time. First look at Dubhe and Merak, the two stars that are commonly used to point toward Polaris, the North Star. Now, looking at the moon and then back to Dubhe and Merak, try to estimate how many moons you could fit between the two stars. And as we've already noted, the moon itself appears a half-degree in width.

Eastern Kentucky University offers more than 70 online degrees and certificates through its EKU Online platform, including numerous ranked programs. Online courses at EKU are offered in eight week terms. Students enjoy benefits such as online academic advising, online tutoring and resources, and online library services. Academic accreditation functions as a seal of quality for online colleges and universities just as it does for traditional on-campus programs. It means that an impartial third-party organization officially recognizes the school as providing reputable programs and degrees.

All of the online schools ranked here have regional accreditation. A degree from an accredited institution comes with approval and recognition of the US Department of Education, which in turn is recognized by other schools and employers as being of good quality. A degree from a non-accredited institution comes with the risk of potentially not being viewed as a real degree by other schools or employers. Many regionally accredited colleges and universities, like state universities, will not accept credits from nationally accredited schools. Simply put: regional accreditation is the gold standard in higher education.

When seeking the best online colleges, you want regionally accredited online colleges. Our ranking methodology includes a blend of data analysis and research in areas such as academic excellence, strength of faculty, reputation, affordability, and range of degree programs , as well as the combined professional experience of our staff and Academic Advisory Board.

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All of the online colleges and universities listed are regionally accredited, nonprofit, and offer a range of online degree programs. The motto of TheBestSchools. Here is how we do it:. A college or university is a complex entity, with numerous factors to consider, and distilling these down to the place where meaningful comparisons can be made to form a defensible ranking list becomes part science and part art.

To meet this challenge—and thereby provide you with the most useful and insightful educational rankings on the Internet — TheBestSchools. The major metrics and qualities for which we rank are these with expanded, detailed considerations and weights listed :. Because students tend to review a variety of information when choosing a school, the weight a student gives any one criterion will vary.

To better serve the needs of prospective students, we are therefore increasingly offering filters that help you better use our rankings to find the schools that match your specific needs. These supplement our ranking criteria and include:. Get the best rankings here AND get them to suit your personal needs. If you have any questions about our ranking methodology, please contact us. Citations : For a broader account of our ranking methodology, especially as it relates to TheBestSchools.

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At TheBestSchools. Insofar as salary and inflation data are relevant to a ranking, we look to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Finally, nothing beats contacting schools and degree programs directly, which our researchers often do, with the result that all the entries in this article should be considered as belonging to this citation! A learning management system LMS is an online or server-based set of tools that allow an institution to track academic records, deliver online learning content, allow for virtual classrooms, manage online student communities, assess student and course outcomes, and so on.

However, as the traditional LSM platforms move online, schools are also now able to take advantage of their LMS's online capabilities to provide a fully online college and distance learning experience. Previously, we did not track the LMS used by a given college or university, however, we are hearing from you that students often prefer one LMS over another, and this is starting to factor into your choice of college.

So, here's what we know about the learning management systems each of the schools above reported using. Created in , Blackboard Learn is one of the top four learning management systems currently in use by online colleges. Through Blackboard, students can engage in key tasks, such as communicating directly with each other or vice versa, submit projects, send and receive email, manage and synchronize calendars, check grades, and complete online exams. Blackboard is optimized for mobile use as well as desktop use.

D2L, formerly known as Desire2Learn, produces Brightspace, one of the top four learning management systems currently in use by online colleges. Not limited to use at the university level, however, D2L Brightspace is also at home in K settings, healthcare organizations, government agencies, and the private sector. Brightspace is a cloud learning environment that functions as a software and service, allowing for ease of communication between institutions, professors, and students, including email, chat discussion, paper submissions, exams, grade checking, and course material delivery.

Brightspace functions on mobile as well as desktop settings. Canvas, produced by Instructure, Inc. Canvas is LMS built on an open source platform that can be freely used by educators, so it is not limited solely to universities that can afford it. The Canvas Conferences feature offers a virtual classroom in which students can interact with professors and each other through discussion boards and messaging, as well as audio and video artifacts, such as announcements, demonstrations, and lectures.

Canvas functions for both mobile and desktop use. Best known for its free massive online open courses MOOCs , Coursera launched in serves both in and oUniversity of academia. Coursera partners with universities around the world to offer courses many of which are free and open to all in a wide array of subjects. For students looking to brush up on a given subject, Coursera has some great options. For students looking for more than that, some groups of courses can even lead to certificates of completion or full graduate degrees with tuition, of course.

Like other LMS platforms, LoudCloud provides communication solutions between students, institutions, and professors.


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Students can learn and communicate through discussion boards, messaging and email, video and audio announcements, submission portals, and exam portals. LoudCloud also serves the needs of competency-based education programs, for life-experience and work-experience credit. First released in , Moodle is an open source platform utilized by universities as well as private companies, making it one of the top four learning management systems.

Moodle allows users to create private websites for specific learning goals, meaning it can be customized to meet the specific needs of students, professors, and subjects, which has made it popular in a variety of settings. Like other LMS platforms, Moodle allows for easy and direct communication between students, professors, and institutions.

Free, and open source, Sakai is a popular choice for LMS platforms among online colleges. Sakai allows for a virtual learning environment that can be customized to the specific needs of professors, students, and courses. It allows for course management, grade bookkeeping, and communications through a variety of media. Users can create unique sites for each course, encouraging a unique, tailored experience. Serving universities, K schools, government agencies, and private companies alike, Schoology is a popular LMS for creating optimized virtual learning environments.

The cloud-based platform allows for course and educational material management through a variety of avenues, including integrating tools such as YouTube, Google Drive, and Dropbox. Its versatility allows for unique and personalized communication solutions between students, professors, and online colleges. Nevertheless, it is utilizes by online colleges as well, mainly for its east of use.

It includes communication solutions for students and professors, and places emphasis on mobile functionality. Accreditation The University of Missouri—Columbia is a member of the Association of American Universities an association of excellent North American research universities. Grand Canyon University; W.


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In-state tuition can save you a lot of money. Be a part of a university or college that you know and love. Get a degree from an online school that employers know and trust. Be close enough to easily visit the campus when you want.

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The major metrics and qualities for which we rank are these with expanded, detailed considerations and weights listed : 1. Considers faculty membership and leadership within relevant, prominent associations Considers academic papers published by faculty in relevant, prominent periodicals Considers awards and recognitions given to faculty members from prominent organizations and from other sources 3. Department of Education and listed on the federal register to accept student federal financial aid Considers range of school-sponsored financial aid such as scholarships and grants 5.

Savvy Students Online College Guide. Financial Aid for Online College. University Park , PA. Gainesville , FL. Bloomington , IN.

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Minneapolis , MN. Corvallis , OR. Philadelphia , PA. Columbia , MO. Tuscaloosa , AL. Fort Collins , CO. Cincinnati , OH. Manhattan , KS. New Brunswick , NJ. Lynchburg , VA. Birmingham , AL.

Grand Forks , ND. Greenwood Village , CO. Louisville , KY. Morgantown , WV. Crookston , MN. Flagstaff , AZ.