Traditionally, earning a college degree has required a student to physically attend a college or University at one of the campuses the institution runs. This might require a student to relocate, or the student might be limited in the classes he or she can register for due to job requirements or scheduling conflicts. Today, the advantages of technology afford students opportunities outside the brick walls of an institution of higher learning. Many students are now opting to earn their college degrees online. As the popularity of attending college online increases, more traditional colleges and Universities are joining the fast-growing group of online-only college and Universities in offering several different levels of college degrees over the internet, presenting students with broader educational options, as well as flexibility and convenience.
There are many advantages to seeking a college degree online. A student need not live locally to attend the college of his or her choosing. Attending classes and submitting coursework online eliminates the need for commuting or relocating. Convenience is another factor in earning a college degree online. A college may be able to offer more sections of certain courses, allowing students more choices as to when to attend classes. Night and weekend sections of courses are usually offered as well, which is ideal for the student that also works full time and/or cares for a family. The flexibility of online college is very attractive. Further, for those who are considering returning to school after several years, attending college online is a great way to ease into the routine of class work and projects again, and can reduce the pressure of feeling the need to fit in with younger students. In addition, who wouldn’t find it appealing to attend college from the comforts of home?
When considering going online to earn a college degree, there are a few options open to the prospective student. There are several online-only institutions that are fully accredited and offer many choices of degrees. Accreditation is an important factor to consider in choosing an online college. If you have previous college credits you would like to transfer, attending an accredited college will be necessary to do that. Also, accreditation is beneficial for having your degree recognized by employers and professional organizations. Online-only colleges offer the benefit of a cutting edge learning format technologically, as well as accelerated programs for those who are in a hurry to earn a college degree for professional advancement.
The type of college degree earned online ranges from Associate’s, Bachelor’s, Master’s, and PhD degrees. And the fields of study and degree programs available are extensive. No longer is online education just for web designers and computer programmers. Students may study Business, Social Sciences, Humanities, foreign languages, Mathematics, Human Resources, Fine Arts, and various Healthcare programs. These are but a few of the fields of study available to the online student.
If you are worried that you might not be able to afford to earn a college degree online, there are options available to you. Some employers might offer to pay a portion or even all tuition and fees toward an employee receiving a degree. Also, financial aid in the form of grants, loans, and even scholarships might be available to you. Check with the particular online program of interest to see what financial options are available, since some colleges might not offer financial aid to students who attend part-time.
You might be concerned that earning your college degree online won’t provide as enriching an experience as attending a traditional face-to-face college or University. Earning a college degree online can be an experience that is every bit as enriching, interpersonal, and dynamic as attending college the old-fashioned way. A big misconception is that online learning is impersonal. This isn’t the case at all. Programs offered online present the same opportunities for group work, independent study, and interpersonal communication as do traditional methods of learning. In fact, attending college online helps to facilitate the independent learning process, as well as developing time management skills. Attending college online takes just as much commitment as the old-fashioned way of going to school, and the potential career and personal benefits are just as great, if not greater. Going online to earn your college degree is a legitimate, convenient, and flexible way for you to advance you education, as well as your career and personal potential.