The landscape for online educational programs largely developed over the last 20 years. Online programs are intended to increase access to higher education, and along the way put into the business terms so frequently used when discussing online educational programs increasing each institution's addressable market. And such online programs cost less than a comparable education at a traditional campus. Staffing online programs with affiliate and part-time faculty is part of a larger trend in higher education. The competition posed by online education to traditional colleges and universities is significant and the field is still largely unsettled. The accreditation process for online education focuses on four key areas: curriculum, faculty, student support and assessment. Accrediting agencies explore how to respond to innovation in higher education appropriately, particularly with the development of online courses and educational experiences being offered either outside or in addition to traditional colleges and universities.