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Online Degrees Programs
What are the online degrees programs ?
Before talking about myths and truths let us examine what online degrees programs are. There are genuine online degree programs offered by prestigious universities. But like anywhere, in the cyber world too there are bogus universities offering bogus online degrees. Knowing about the truths and myths about the online degrees can help you to avoid falling prey to the scam online colleges or degree mills. Nowadays, most universities have incorporated online learning and assessment activities like lectures, presentations, quizzes and tutorials to their on-campus programs. There are some hybrid degree programs that have both on-campus and distance learning components. The online degrees programs offer all the tuition, coursework and assessments online. Even before the internet was invented distance education has played a big role in developing knowledge and skills of vast numbers of individuals who find it difficult to attend college. According to records University of London became the first university to offer distance learning external degrees in 1858. Widespread use of internet has made distance learning available to more students. The quality of distance education is much more improved due to the introduction of interactive components with video conferencing.
Some misconceptions about online degrees programs and online colleges
Accreditation: A common misconception about online degrees is that they are not accredited. But the truth is that genuine online degrees are accredited by the respective accreditation authorities of the countries where the universities offering those degrees. Many countries have passed laws to prevent unauthorized institutions using “university’ in their names and to prevent them issuing degrees and diplomas. In USA accrediting agencies recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) or Department of Education (USDE) can assess the degree programs of the universities authorized to grant degrees. CHEA and USDE maintain databases of accredited universities and other degree granting institutions as well as their accredited degree programs. Anybody intending to follow an online degrees program or on-campus degree program, can check theses databases, and satisfy themselves whether the intended program and the university are accredited by a recognized accrediting organization. Beware of some bogus colleges and universities with accreditation certifications from organizations not recognized by the USDE or CHEA.
Check for accrediting organizations recognized by CHEA and USDE at
www.chea.org/pdf/CHEA_USDE_AllAccred.pdf (updated April 2011)
Check for accredited degree granting institutes colleges and universities at
Check for accredited degree programs (both online and on-campus) can be found in both CHEA and USDE websites and follow the links for individual states.
Duration of the Online Degrees Programs
Many people believe that an online degrees program can be completed in a short time like six months. This is false. A genuine accredited degree course from an accredited university or college takes the same time like an on-campus degree course or longer. But degree mills advertise that they can grant you a degree in a very short time by evaluating your resume and giving credits for “life experience”. Accrediting organizations never recognize this type of programs. Check before you pay the money.
Getting an Online Degree is Cheaper
The tuition fees for online degree program or on-campus are comparable for the same level of universities and courses. But for on-campus degree courses, students may have to bear a high cost for attending lectures and classes because students have to pay for board and lodging in a different city away from home. Following an online course may be cheaper if the cost of attending also is considered
online degree programs
Transferability of Credits
Credits earned from an accredited online degree program are transferable to many universities and colleges though it is a common misconception that online credits are not transferable. What matters is the accreditation of the degree granting organization and the program.
Following an Online Degree Course is easier than an On-campus Program
This also is not true. The difficulty levels of the curriculum of the course is the same for online program and the on-campus course offered by many universities if they are offering both on-campus and online degree programs. It may be easier to the student to follow an online course due to the flexibility of the schedules that can be planned by the student.
Online degrees programs offer an ideal opportunity for the adult students and those who face problems in attending on-campus degree programs due to personal commitments both career and personal.