Should I consider an online college?

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  1. allbymyself profile image60
    allbymyselfposted 13 years ago

    I need some advice.  I have been considering going back to school, but I do have to work full time.  I thought an online program might be a perfect fit for my schedule.  However, after doing some research, I am concerned that these schools may not provide the end result I am after.  Any suggestions?

    1. profile image58
      beach88bum70posted 13 years agoin reply to this


      There are so many schools offering online programs to choose from.  How many credits do you have currently toowards your degree currently? Have you ever taken an online class before?  Make sure you go to a school that is accredited and I prefer stay away from "for-profit" schools.   You have to look into each program to see how the format is setup - 5 weeks, 7 weeks, 8 week semsters. 
      I started in a 5 week semster - one class every 5 weeks. It just could not work with my schedule.    I now go to a 8 week semster 2 classes each semster if you want to go full time.  And it has a week off between the 2 semsters. I like this set up much better than the first online program I was in but it works better for my schedule. 
      If I may ask what end result are you attempting to get?

    2. profile image0
      Woodedposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      I got my degree online and much quicker than if I had attended on campus. Do your homework - find an accredited school - ask about their success rates, etc. Most universities have online programs now and you may even be able to try your first online class for free. If you don't like it you will still have the credits! Good luck!!!

      1. Andrea Hildreth profile image60
        Andrea Hildrethposted 13 years agoin reply to this


        I love this "try your first online class for free" idea!  Is this a popular option?  Can you tell me what school(s) give folks this option?


    3. aimdoll profile image61
      aimdollposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      Your needs, degree to be studied and choice of Online learning Institutions will ultimately affect whether or not a distance learning environment will be well suited to you.  I am an online student, it is practical for me for several reasons.  What degree program are you interested in?  Which online schools have you reviewed?  Without additional information, it is impossible to answer your question comprehensively.  I would like to help, although I need more information.  Good luck either way.

    4. gabrielhues profile image60
      gabrielhuesposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      Absolutely ! Do not rule any college out but make sure you research it well.  Make sure it is accredited in the program you want to enter, that the school meets established educational standards, that credits can be transferred to other school if you choose to go to a local college, ask about the credentials of the faculty, inquire about tutors or your ability to contact your instructor if necessary and investigate your financial options.

      And most of all have fun and Good luck !

    5. Anna Wise profile image61
      Anna Wiseposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      Make sure you choose a good college. Checking for accreditation is not so simple; for-profit schools that are not worth it (IMHO) are also accredited, by their own accreditation board. But they accept anybody, charge as much or more than a real college, and job prospects afterwards are not so hot because the quality of education you get, lets face it, is bad. (I know because my hubby taught briefly in one, when he was unemployed and we were desperate... he saw it from the inside, and ran after one semester... he doesn't mention that experience on his resume either. Engineering students who don't know arithmetic.. that's the quality).

      I think the best would be to take online classes from a real brick-and-mortar college that also offers real in-person courses. Most colleges nowadays do that. Make sure your diploma afterwards will be from this college, without any special caveats like "online degree". If you can, choose the college with the best ranking and reputation that will accept you. It does matter.

    6. profile image52
      janecollinsposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      And what is the end result you’re after? Online degrees are a great way to continue your education and advance your career. If you’re looking to switch careers, online degree programs will help you in your effort by equipping you with new skills.

      If your concern is about their acceptability, I suggest you do some research about the school you intend to pursue your degree from. Online degree programs at accredited, reputed schools are considered valid and have the same quality and complexity of classroom-based programs!

    7. sophieadams profile image60
      sophieadamsposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      Online degrees are perfect for working adults like you. If you are concerned about the result see the accreditation of the college or university in which you wish to enroll. If it is accredited then, the degree will be worth it. Otherwise don't bother.

    8. JJ Snow profile image60
      JJ Snowposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      My best advice for you is to register for an online course at a local college.  Just one and see how things go.  If you work full time I do not recommend online courses because they don't allow you to work at your own pace.  What you might be interested in is a  distance learning program.

  2. AskAshlie3433 profile image60
    AskAshlie3433posted 13 years ago

    I go online and it is great! You are a full time student. You get the same degree as those who attend physically. Best move I ever made. I was worried at first, but it gets easier. There are a number of them around the world. I attend just two days a week and I am a full time student. There is great interaction in the courses. This is a good move. Best of luck.

  3. habee profile image91
    habeeposted 13 years ago

    My daughter attends college online and loves it!

  4. submitedgeclb profile image57
    submitedgeclbposted 13 years ago

    An online college education is the best option if you are considering going back to college or planning to further your education for career advancement. Online colleges today offer all levels of online courses, be it diplomas, bachelor degrees, master degrees and PhDs. You can also choose from a great variety of online courses offering a wide range of subjects. Its a really good for you. Try it.

  5. Glen619 profile image61
    Glen619posted 13 years ago

    I think in your case online education is the best option, but before i continue it would be better if you mention the field your interested in and also where are you located. I think i have just the right solution for you

  6. Beege215e profile image59
    Beege215eposted 13 years ago

    Online degrees from a "fully accredited university are great when you have to work or would like to attend from a distance. Many great universities and colleges are going online to keep enrollment up and help those that can't get to the classroom. I encourage you to do some research, don't fall for the quick cheap sell from some unknown "school" where the degree isn't worth the paper it is printed on. go for it.

  7. aslanlight profile image65
    aslanlightposted 13 years ago

    I've been studying online for several years and I highly recommend it! You can study in your own time and at your own pace. You have interaction with other students in most cases, and as much tutor feedback as you like. I'm unable to attend University so being able to study online is perfect! I'd say go for it; what have you got to lose?

  8. Rafini profile image82
    Rafiniposted 13 years ago

    I'm a full-time student taking 3 courses on campus and 1 online course.  All four courses run the entire semester, and the online course actually requires more work than the other three, but the online course from last semester required less. 

    Last year I took 3 online courses and 1 on-site course, each about 8 weeks & for a certificate, and preferred the online courses because the schedule was closer to 'work at your own pace'. 

    I guess what I'm trying to say is, if you've got the time to invest it's a great way to learn!

  9. sumitparihar profile image41
    sumitpariharposted 13 years ago

    yes it is good to choose it will sav eyour time........

  10. profile image0
    Virtual Careersposted 13 years ago

    Choose wisely my friend!  There are alot of schools that have just popped up over the past 10 years do to the fact that many people are out of work, heading back to college, so colleges are full.  Many people are out of work, and can't afford a "University" school so they turn to an alternative school.  Check and make sure the school is accredited, if not move to the next school on your list, but that is a very important factor when selecting an on line school.  Think of it this way, you don't want to put all that money into a school, do all the work and then have nothing at the end!

  11. Rhonda_M profile image69
    Rhonda_Mposted 13 years ago

    Now a days  there's quite a menu for online learning. More colleges and universities are offering programs almost entirely online or partially online. In an instituttion that is mixed mode, you have a school that has a track record for getting it right in the classroom, so at least the content of the courses will be OK. However, a lot of instructors are relatively new to online teaching so it might be hit and miss with your professors and tutors.

    A single mode institutions is only in the business of online education - well-known examples include the British Open University and Athabasca university in Canada which only offer distance courses. The University of Phoenix and others are also only in the online business but they are "for profit" institutions--some people swear by them, I, on the other hand, am not impressed with them (I did my masters in distance ed and examined a number of different institutions).

    Look for universities that are accredited and, equally important, who have faculty who know how to teach online.

    Another thing, is that you tend to find online programs clustered in areas where the job demand is great: healthcare, education, business and computers. If you're interested in the ARts or in more applied education, the choices may be more limited (that is changing).

    Make sure too, that any credits you get can be transferable to other insitutions. A good university or college will definitely be able to offer that.

  12. profile image0
    khmohsinposted 13 years ago

    For online Education , you really need to be regular and persistent, No laziness

  13. Man from Modesto profile image78
    Man from Modestoposted 13 years ago

    There are some limits: You can't do any major that requires lab work: There are no beakers, no seismographs, no litmus paper, no concrete slump tests in online courses. You cannot take your classmate's pulse.

    There is no study group.

    Online degrees have lower graduation rates: about 30%.

    An online degree is  for one type of person: Someone who wants a degree for the sake of getting a degree, and that is it.

    I have moved around for 20 years and enrolled at 8 different universities and colleges. I'm taking online business courses. At the other campuses, I took history, psychology, engineering, chemistry, computer programming, and etcetera. Online school is easier.

    Why is it easier?

    Some reasons are not obvious. The reading is about the same as a high reputation school. I studied psych at UPenn. They loaded us up with reading. It is like that: 3 chapters per week, typically. It is not easy to work and do all that reading. However, there is no travel, no parking (a pain everywhere), no visits to the admin office or financial aid department, either. It is all conducted via Internet. Because online schools are run like a business, people get back to you same day, within an hour, usually. This takes a lot of garbage off your mind, and allows you to focus on actually learning.

    There is no social action. This is a plus for the person who wants to get ahead and learn. No one is attempting to get you drunk. No one is sizing up your family wealth in pursuit of an MRS degree.

    Tests of knowledge are open book. This means you do not have to memorize lots of data. What will the impact of this be on your work ability in the future? Zero. I work as an engineer. The things I use all the time, I know. The other 65% is unusual information. I look up all that information as needed. The most important thing in professional life is to know WHERE the information is, not to have it memorized.

    The only real negative to be concerned with is this: How will hiring PR management teams view your online degree? I perceive there is a long way to go there to overcome bias against online degrees. However, that is fading. Truth is, degrees are overrated. The successful employee is not the one with the most expensive degree. He is the one who works hardest and smartest.

  14. StephanieBCrosby profile image81
    StephanieBCrosbyposted 12 years ago

    Online is definitely a great option. I too was wary at first because at first I was going to attend a well-known on campus program for my Ph.D. Then the economy tanked and they could only fund two out of their normal 25 or so students.

    It took a lot of searching to find the right program for me. But like others have said, as long as the school has the right accreditation(s) you will be fine. I like to think that the degree or the school itself are not what's going to make you or your career but rather what you do with the knowledge gained.

    Good luck

  15. ReviewEnvelope profile image59
    ReviewEnvelopeposted 12 years ago

    Definitely ,you can look for online courses from Harvard University

  16. Madeline Madison profile image69
    Madeline Madisonposted 12 years ago

    After getting my first degree in a field I didn't want to pursue professionally, it was important that I could be working while studying.  After doing much research, I came across Regent University based in Virginia Beach.  It's a Christian university that offers both on campus and online degrees.  I couldn't have been happier with the set up of Regent's English curriculum and the online format was easy to use.  It gave me the freedom to study as I pleased, but also had deadlines that kept me on task.

  17. psycheskinner profile image82
    psycheskinnerposted 12 years ago

    Make sure the online college is accredited, properly priced and has stats about the employment rate and income of their graduates from the program you are considering.

    1. Freegoldman profile image41
      Freegoldmanposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      Plz dont becz if u dnt visit a college u wnt be able to experience its thrill

  18. seowriterforlaw profile image59
    seowriterforlawposted 12 years ago

    You better go to school. Online courses cannot give you essential information that you need.

  19. profile image0
    Aleister888posted 12 years ago

    Yeah, i would say go for it, i have myself been contemplating an online degree for some time, and i must say, it certainly is a good way to go about doing things if you want to keep a work/study balance.

  20. profile image52
    williamdrekposted 11 years ago

    Yes, go for it.

  21. Marcy Goodfleisch profile image83
    Marcy Goodfleischposted 11 years ago

    Yes, go for it!  I disagree that it is easier, though - online courses are often even more rigorous than classroom courses.  You can indeed have study groups and develop a sense of community (look at the community we have on this site?).   Distance learners need to be disciplined and self-starters.  You also need to be as skilled at writing as possible - that's pretty much the main way you demonstrate your learning and pass the courses. 

    There's a huge demand for online courses now, and unlike a few decades ago, major universities now (finally) understand that online learning can offer all the dynamic and intellectual credibility of classroom learning.  Students engage in lively debates on discussion boards and often form smaller teams to study together and work on projects.  Many universities are scrambling to expand their online programs - so many students now work fulltime, or live too far to commute, and almost all students (of every age group) are fluent in social media and feel comfortable communicating online. 

    You will make friends all over the world in online courses - and some of these will be lasting friendships.  You will immerse yourself in the texts, because there are no lectures to lean on, so you'll learn more than in a classroom.  And you can do it during the hours you're free.   

    Yes!  Go for it!

  22. profile image0
    Chris Hughposted 11 years ago

    It depends on what you're after. I got my teaching credential online through National University, and I got just what I needed. What do you want to study?

  23. Maria Price profile image57
    Maria Priceposted 11 years ago

    The key is to attend an accredited college. When checking the accreditation of a college, check to make sure it is by an agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. For example, I’m currently reviewing Independence University. Independence University is accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC) recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. This gives me the reassurance that the accrediting agency is a legitimate one and the college is NOT a diploma mill. … t-22004452

    1. Marcy Goodfleisch profile image83
      Marcy Goodfleischposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      There may be a difference between accreditation of career schools and standard college and university accreditation.  If you plan to transfer college-level  or get a standard degree (bachelor-level, etc.) make certain the school is accredited for that purpose.  The U.S. Department of Education does not accredit institutions itself, but it does list information about accreditation.

      As with diploma mills, there are also accreditation mills.  These are sham organizations that develop their own 'accreditation' process (generally requiring a hefty fee and paperwork) but if the accreditation process is not recognized by higher education institutions or by licensing agencies (for example, if you wanted to become a licensed practical or vocational nurse), then your courses may not give you the credentials you want. 

      For higher education courses, research whether the courses will transfer to a recognized state university.  Even if you have no intention of transferring to another school, that will let you know the institution is properly accredited. 

      For career schools, research whether the courses or program will allow you to get licensed or to legally practice a trade in your state.  Some career schools offer programs for fields not requiring a license (basic business courses, for example, might be offered).  Ask whether the school has a relationship with well-known employers in your area.  Do they help place graduates?  Do local industries recognize the institution?

      Back to the original question - you can indeed get recognized undergraduate and graduate degrees from institutions offering online programs. This entire area of education is expanding faster than institutions can keep up with it.


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