What You Must Know About Online Degree Programs

By: Helen Hecker

Working on an online degree at home lets you learn on your own schedule and in your own way and lets you decide how quickly you want to earn your degree. Many people are earning a bachelor's, master's or doctorate degree online in their field of interest whether it's an online nursing degree, online education degree, online psychology degree, or even biology, engineering or online criminal justice degree without conforming to the traditional, time consuming campus setting.

The Dept. of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation recognize the Distance Education and Training Council as the accrediting organization for distance learning institutions and education programs that offer online degrees. In 1996, the University of Colorado at Denver expanded its metropolitan campus with the formation of CU Online, one of the first fully accredited online education programs offering online university degrees. Make sure your online degree school choice has accreditation. This means the institution has passed a certain level of standards through a recognized organization for upholding quality education.

Its been reported that employers feel that an employee receiving an online education degree compared favorably, in terms of the knowledge learned, to someone with an on campus degree. If you're working but would really like to earn a degree, then the opportunity is there more so today than ever before. Some of the experts argue that degrees in certain fields are more accepted online than in others, while some online degree programs are less suited for online-only schools.

Finding an institution that offers successful job placement after graduating or completing an online degree program may be the deciding factor in your search. Research the schools of your choice and talk to a counselor or representative from each of the institutions. Also find out what financial aid or education loans are available. There are scholarships, grants, education loans and other financial aid available for online degree programs.

Graduates of the best online degree programs are a good source of recommendations. Make sure to ask them if there is anything they think you should be aware of or avoid. Very important: make sure that any online credits you earn are transferable. Ask the institution directly because most schools vary from course to course and with the individual school policy. Try to find online forums, blogs or chat rooms with students who are attending the school you have in mind.

Today if you want to get an online degree know that it just isn't as hard as it used to be. Keep in mind if you do need financial aid there are plenty of education loans available if you can't locate any grants or free online degree scholarships. And don't forget to ask what the percentage of job placement has been for online degree program graduates if you'll be looking to start a new a career.

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