About OPB

OPB (Online Program Benchmarking) is a special dataset, built specifically for OPMs to benchmark online programs and feed into product strategy and development analysis and decisions. 'Core participants' receive the dataset for no additional charge as part of their expert subscription in return for contributing high level program data which supplements a core aggregation of public program data that is built, matched and cleaned each quarter. 'Follower subscribers' pay an additional fee to their expert subscription to receive the dataset each quarter.

Following the next OPB Data set release, late January 2022, we will be reviewing OPB with participants and subscribers to evaluate the benchmarking cohort concept. In discussion with participating OPMs, there are a number of options.

  • Closed Benchmarking Cohort. Only available to contributing participants on a cost sharing basis. Potential to benchmark detailed metrics such as price, acquisition costs and other valuable and sensitive metrics.

  • Continue current programs dataset.

  • Discontinue programs dataset and focus on partnerships and market sizing.

Regardless of the future options, the program dataset will be updated quarterly and available through each customers current subscription period.

Program Data Update

The following table outlines the number of universities, partners (OPMs etc) and programs by major regions of the world with US separated from the rest of the Americas.


Americas (Ex US)

Asia Pacific

Europe, ME and Africa











Total Programs





What about Partnerships?

In Q1 2021, OPM Partnerships where integrated together with all other partnership data in the Expert Subscription. OPM Partnerships are not part of the OPB Dataset. Check in with your account manager to learn more about the Relationships feature.

Each quarter account managers will share a clean partnerships data file for faster access to the entire partnerships dataset.

Q3 2021 Programs Update

In Q4 of 2021, OPB underwent a significant upgrade that:

  • expanded global coverage,

  • transitioned to a 2-tier categorization system for programs as opposed to the previously utilized 3-tier system, and

  • identified programs in the dataset as they are presented on university websites. For example, if a university discretely markets 4 separate MBA programs, one for each concentration offered, then four programs are included in the dataset. Conversely, if the university discretely markets 1 MBA program, then that is what is included in the dataset.

Notes on Global Coverage

As of this release, the dataset has been expanded to be considered truly global in scope. Every effort is made to identify as many vendors and partnerships as possible. Data is anticipated to be slightly more comprehensive in developed markets where the OPM industry is more mature. Nevertheless, data for developing countries is still considered comprehensive, but should be understood as conservative, as information for these markets continues to evolve.

Notes on the 2-Tier Program Categorization

All programs are now classified using a 2-tier system, one for credential type and the other for credential subject. In the credential type taxonomy, programs are either graduate degrees, undergraduate degrees, or non-degree programs. Graduate degrees include master’s (including education specialist degrees) and doctorate programs (including professional programs) (and international equivalents). Undergraduate degrees include associate’s and bachelor’s programs (and international equivalents). All non-degree programs are tagged as certificates in this release as well. There is also a category for dual degree programs, and these programs do not get classified by subject. Although we have maintained the same 5 broad subject categories, (Business, Education, Healthcare, Human Services & Studies, and STEM) subjects were also transitioned to a 2-tier classification system with only the broad category and specific subject.

Notes on the Inclusion or Exclusion of Various Providers

In this release, we have moved to exclude state-sponsored online education platforms like Contact North, OpenSUNY, Open Universities Australia, and Springboard+. Finally, going forward, the database won’t include programmatic data for Education-as-a-Benefit providers like Guild Education due to the nature of those partnerships not necessarily occurring for specific programs.

Data is reviewed quarterly and is subject to change. New providers and partnerships are sometimes identified retrospectively changing historic data.

Did this answer your question?