The OPM Model

Over ten years ago, our management team invented the conventional university-OPM relationship. The world is a different place now, and that model is no longer in the interest of students and schools. So we turned it on its head and started over. And it’s caught on.

Today, Noodle’s partner universities retain academic and financial ownership over their programs and tap into our vast network of experts and resources. We’ve partnered with as many top universities in the past two years as all conventional OPMs combined.


Noodle offers an innovative, flexible economic model that takes into account a university’s in-house resources and unique program goals. Compared to the conventional OPM model, we save our university partners and their students $15,000 to $30,000 per student.

Traditional OPMs finance the costs of launching a new program (commonly exceeding $2.5 million) in exchange for as much as 65% of online tuition revenue for up to a decade.

When online education was new, risky and expensive, this made a certain amount of sense; it no longer does. We’re happy to help any university analyze the economic impact of our contract vs those of conventional OPMs.

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Noodle is far more flexible than conventional OPMs. First, we don’t insist on doing everything ourselves. We want to leverage your internal strengths; for example, schools like Boston College have great and sizable learning design teams, so we simply advise and support them.

Second, we’re sensitive to the many possibilities for integrating your online and on-campus programs. The goal is to eliminate confusion — and sometimes even competition — among programs. Today’s peripatetic students require the best of both online and on-campus offerings.

By comparison, conventional OPMs have long contracts, locking you in for up to ten or fifteen years (we ask only five, though we’re delighted to commit to longer terms), and require you to use their LMS, learning designers, and other services.


The Noodle model was designed to align our interests with those of our university partners. We profit when our partners achieve a better quality and lower cost program than it could achieve on its own.

Noodle collects a flat fee for every credit hour enrolled in programs managed by us, so we are incentivized to grow enrollments to a healthy scale. But that fee is the same regardless of how much the university charges per credit hour, so we are NOT incentivized to work with expensive programs or inflate pricing.

This is a crucial difference between our model and the conventional OPM revenue share, where the most profit is made by steering students to less selective, more expensive schools. Further, conventional OPMs often require their partners to adapt to and invest in the OPM’s in-house technology and marketing strategy. In doing so, they are adding stress and cost to an already exhaustive process.


We share your data with you on a real-time basis to help you to better enhance your programs and control costs. In fact, we’ve spent millions of dollars to create a platform that visualizes that data, benchmarks it, and connects it to tools to manage programs.

Traditional OPMs don’t want you to know your metrics. How exactly do they market to prospective students? How much do they spend to convert qualified applicants from different channels into enrolled students?  In fact, some OPMs consider your data and students to be their own, and market programs of other universities to them without your consent.

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Switching to
A Better Path

If you’re already stuck in a relationship with a traditional OPM, we can help you uncover and address the enormous hidden costs of ending that relationship, with minimal disruption.

Then, we’ll hit the ground running, improving your programs while moving to a less expensive, more flexible, and more transparent model.