Category Archives: Accredited Online Programs

Accredited Online Bachelor Degrees – Overview

oninebachWith the emergence of the internet, more and more colleges and universities are beginning to offer online bachelor degree programs to students across the world. Unlike going to an actual brick-and-mortar institution, online bachelor degree programs are becoming a dominant norm for how many people across the world are obtaining an undergraduate education. Online education is now becoming a serious alternative for those looking for an undergraduate education. Years ago, it was assumed that online schooling was only for certain individuals, but now it is becoming a common option for working professionals, those interested in switching careers, and others looking for an affordable, flexible, and accelerated option that they need to pursue their professional aspirations. Because students are not going to a traditional brick-and-mortar institution for their education, most online programs are more affordable than their brick and mortar counterparts. Obviously, tuition costs and educational expenses will depend on the school and the program. It’s important to research and find the most affordable program that will suit your educational, personal, and professional needs.

The Difference Between Online Bachelor Degrees and Traditional Degrees

It is now common for many community colleges, four year colleges and universities to offer online bachelor degree options. Typically, these programs are offered for very common programs such as nursing, business management, criminal justice and information technology. These programs are accredited similar to other bachelor degree programs and require schools to meet or surpass specific standards established by accreditation organizations and agencies. Courses are administered through a variety of innovative options. The most common is that students will take courses that are taught by a professor in a remote location who is simultaneously teaching a live class. When examination time comes, students will take a class at a location where there is an official test proctor. Another common option is that students will courses offered through an online learning content management system where course materials, lectures and examinations are already created and automated for students to take.

Just like traditional bachelor degree programs, students are still expected to go through the college’s or university’s application process. This usually means sending high school and other school transcripts, letters of recommendation, college entrance test scores like the ACT and SAT and a personal statement. Some colleges may not require all of this, however, do your due diligence to see what are the exact requirements for the online bachelor degree program you are interested in.

Most online bachelor degree programs will require students to have the latest PC technology, a webcam, microphone and a stable fast speed internet connection. Most students have laptops that were made no prior to two years ago. Also students must ensure that they have a stable internet connection. It is recommended that students either have a cable or fiber optic internet service.

The typical online bachelor’s degree program can last anywhere between three to four years depending on meeting all general education prerequisites. There are some colleges that offer accelerated options. These are usually offered through health science and nursing programs. Additionally, as long as the online program is accredited, students may be eligible for all forms of financial aid such as loans and grants. Students should still seek other alternative funding opportunities such as scholarships and fellowships.

Accredited Online Associate Degree Programs – Overview

associateonlineOnline learning has become more widely accepted over the recent years due to the increasing demand by students for alternatives to the time and financial investments required to complete traditional degrees. Earning a degree online can open up lots of different doors, including career advancement opportunities, employment in a new career, and so much more. Knowing exactly what an online associate degree is and in which ways it is different from a traditional degree can help you as you select the best school to meet your personal, financial, educational, and professional needs.

What An Associate Degree Is

An associate degree is a degree that is earned from two-year college for completing a specific program of study. Associate degrees generally take two years to complete, but in some cases, they can take longer if the student drops to or below half time status. The online aspect of an associate degree program means that the required courses are taken online rather than on a traditional campus. The student connects to his/her classes via an internet connection and receives assignments, completes work, and takes test all from the comfort of his/her own home.

Once the course of study is completed for the degree, the student is typically given the choice to either attend a traditional graduation or simply receive his/her diploma in the mail.

The Differences Between Online Associate Degrees and Traditional Degrees

The online associate degree differs from traditional associate degrees in many ways. One of the most major ways is that courses can be accessed from almost anywhere that has an internet connection. This particular perk is perfect for students that don’t live anywhere near a traditional campus to attend school, if they frequently travel, or must maintain work or family responsibilities in addition to their studies.

Online associate degrees also allow students to truly work at their own pace as opposed to at traditional schools. A traditional student that attends school on campus might be required to sit in on a two hour long lecture, while the online student has the choice of listening to the lecture or not. If you find that you can complete the work without listening to the lecture, this is often times permissible in online classes.

Online associate degrees are also great for those who desperately need to balance work and school. Because they can be logged into at any time, they are perfect for the students that work even the most odd work shifts. For example, a person that works midnight work shifts has the same chance of passing a class at school that another student does who happens to work earlier, more traditional hours. Traditional universities/colleges require that students show up for class at certain times with no exceptions.

Lastly, online associate degrees do not commonly require that students take unrelated elective courses to their degrees. Online degree curricula are typically to the point and hinge closely to relevant subject matter. This means you only take classes that are pertinent to your field so that you can in and out more quickly, and you can enter the real world as a qualified professional ready to begin looking for work.

Accredited Online Degree Programs – The Advantages

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Online degree programs are growing in popularity and appeal to all age groups. Making certain that the chosen program is accredited ensure a more successful outcome. Plus are many advantages to completing your college or university studies online. Many online degrees are considered just as valuable as their traditional and on-campus counterparts though the difference between an online degree and a traditional one is that the student “attends” classes via the Internet from any location rather than attending a college campus. Many students must continue to work full time while pursuing an associate, bachelor’s, masters or doctoral degree. The physically disabled, those who must maintain work responsibilities, and stay-at-home parents benefit from having the option to take online classes. These students have the same opportunity to continue their education in an online-accredited degree program as those who choose the traditional campus setting thanks to the response of many colleges and universities who offer the flexibly scheduling of online programs. What sets most online degrees apart is whether or not they are accredited. Accreditation helps ensure a high quality education for students, which is important in today’s highly competitive job market since acquiring an accredited online degree is looked upon favorably by employers and increases opportunities for promotions.

The Accreditation Process for Colleges and Universities

To be recognized by accrediting organizations and agencies, colleges and universities undergo evaluation against specific and established standards prior to receiving accreditation. This validation process in the United States is voluntary and is conducted by private non-governmental accrediting agencies. Accredited online degrees satisfy all state educational guidelines and are readily accepted by most employers. According to a survey conducted by the Distance and Training Council, a high percentage of employers preferred accredited online program graduates because of their in-depth knowledge and organizational skills. Those who earn an online degree exhibit more self-discipline and are more inclined to meet pre-determined goals.

The Difference Between Accredited Schools And Accredited Programs

Many schools offer online degree programs, but not all are accredited. It is vitally important for all students to remember that just because a school is accredited does not mean that the online degree programs are accredited as well. The primary types of accreditation include regional, national and international accreditation agencies. Certain areas of study for a specific degree program require programmatic accreditation. One example of a regional accrediting agency for colleges and universities is the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools The Higher Learning Commission. An example of a programmatic accrediting agency for an online program in library science is the American Library Association Committee on Accreditation.

The Online Degree Experience

Today’s technology enables some individuals to begin or continue their higher education in a convenient way that enhances learning and helps them maintain a connection to other students. The online college experience provides many opportunities for students to interact with one another in a digital or alternative setting. Many schools have established social studying sites for those who prefer studying in a group setting so even online students get the first hand college experiences necessary to establish the educational foundation necessary for success.

Students who choose online learning to complete their degree have the opportunity to engage in numerous activities that offer similar social interaction experiences as those who attend classes on campus. Online threaded discussions allow students to interact with instructors and other students at the same time. These discussions involve posting a response to a question or possibly commenting on another student’s post. The online setting provides students with an opportunity to engage other students in more thought-provoking discussions.

Online learning gives students the opportunity and independence to choose when to participate in the class. This aspect of online classes challenges some to develop time-management skills to avoid procrastination, but this skill can be useful later on in the workplace. Most online students enjoy the opportunity to interact with fellow classmates and look forward to logging in to the class every day. Building online relationships with fellow class members provides motivation to interact with others in a meaningful way.