SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) — The South Dakota Board of Regents says nearly 22,000 students enrolled in a distance education course at South Dakota public universities last year.

That's an 8.5 percent growth in unduplicated students enrolled in distance courses. It's slightly lower than last year's 13 percent increase.

Regents executive director and chief executive Jack Warner, says virtually all major performance indicators climbed by large margins. He says total enrollment, average enrollment, total credit hours and average credit hours in distance education have all increased each year since 2008-09.

Courses are primarily offered through the Internet and the Digital Dakota. They're also offered at off-campus delivery sites in Sioux Falls, Pierre, Rapid City, Watertown, Huron, and Mitchell.

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