Online Degree Programs

Find the Best Accredited Online Degree Programs

Finding Quality Online Degree Programs

Maybe you’re an adult who’s already got a job, and you’re considering an online college degree program in order to advance your career. Or you’re a diligent 19-year-old who’s willing to commit study time to an online degree program but can’t make the move to a brick-and-mortar college. Regardless of the circumstances, there are some things to consider in making your decision, because not all online college degree programs are created equal.

Only Consider an Accredited Online Degree Program

We can’t stress this enough. Make double sure that your online college degree program is fully accredited, meaning that your credits can be transferred to a traditional brick-and-mortar school at some point down the line. Many people go for an online degree program to complete their first year or two of college, with a residential college in mind later.

Finding out that your credits won’t apply will mean that you’ve essentially spun your wheels for two years of your life…and you will not want to see that happen!

Be Wary Of Scams

There are still plenty of “accredited online degree programs” out there that are nothing more than shams. They might offer a degree in a ridiculously short amount of time, or for a skimpy amount of money. Do your homework and trust your gut on this one…if that “accredited online degree program” sounds too good to be true, it’s a pretty sure bet that it is.

Bear in mind that if you do go through one of these programs and get the certificate, “degree” or other piece of paper, you’ll be defrauding your new employer if you pass that off as an education. It could seriously tarnish your reputation and your employability in the future.

Think About Your Career Path Before Choosing an Online Degree Program

Talk to counselors at traditional schools and at your online degree program both. In a down economy, job placement might be a challenge — find out about the school’s success rate at putting graduates in new jobs. Think about sectors that do well even in difficult times; for instance, baby boomers are reaching retirement age, and healthcare and pharmaceutical fields are going to be hot for some time to come.

On the other hand, there’s been a glut of degreed professionals in accounting, financial and law fields for awhile now, and those job markets have cooled considerably.

Do Your Homework to Find the Best Online College Degree Programs

Yes, do your homework for your courses…of course! But also look long and hard at the track record of the school you’re considering.

  •   How are their courses structured?
  •   How are they acknowledged for providing a quality education?
  •   What’s their completion rate like?
  •   How do they rank against other schools in the same field?
  •   How much help can they offer for job placement once you graduate?

Now…A Few Questions to ask Yourself

So you’ve made the decision, you’ve thought about a field to go into, you’ve found a good accredited online degree program. Now it’s time to ask yourself:

  •   Can I honestly juggle the coursework along with the responsibilities of family, current job and personal life?
  •   How can I afford this? Will I need to go after loans and grants?
  •   How much should I take on per semester?
  •   How comfortable will I be with forums, chat rooms and such?
  •   How badly do I want to do this?

It will all depend on your motivation and ambition. You’re the only one who knows the answer to these.