Archive | April, 2012

Finding a quality degree online

25 Apr

Not everyone can go to pack up their bags, leave everything behind and go to college. But not everyone is willing to let go of their dreams and aspirations because of that either. What do they do? They go to school online. But how do you find one that’s worth your time, money and effort? Let’s take a look.

Always check the accreditation

When it comes to online colleges, some students might find it hard to distinguish between a diploma mill and a legitimate, respectable college. The key is look up the college’s accreditation. A legitimate online college will hold either a regional or national accreditation from an accrediting body recognized either by the U.S. Department of Education (USDE) or the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) or both. Not only will this guarantee that the college has met a set standard of education quality, but it is also likely to be recognized and accepted by future employers.

Do a check on the qualifications of the faculty

An online college should be willing to disclose information about its faculty. Question the college administration about the qualifications of the faculty. The instructors should be graduates in their respective fields with relevant work experience. Having work experience is beneficial to students of fields such as healthcare and business.

Read up on student reviews

One of the best ways to find out about an online college is by reading student and alumni reviews on the Internet. Such reviews talk about student experiences; good or bad, college offerings, where they think the college could improve and much more. Take for instance Independence University. Student reviews of Independence University talk about the student services, financial aid assistance programs for those who qualify and other things students might find helpful. To know more about the college you should read a student review of Independence University.

What is the level of student-instructor interaction?

Keeping the students engaged and interested is important for the any online program to be successful. A college should always be open to discussing the measures they take to keep the programs engaging. Also, ask the college about how the faculty communicates with the students and how students can communicate with each other. It would help if you get an idea of the frequency of interaction between instructors and their students as it will help you understand just how involved the professors are with their students.

Keep your eye out for:

·     Colleges with names that closely resemble names of popular colleges.

·    Colleges that provide no details about their accreditation.

·     Colleges that have been accredited by agencies not recognized by either the USDE or CHEA.

·   Colleges that have no mailing address on their website.

·     Colleges that promise to award you with a degree for a sum of money.

·     Colleges that disclose little or no information about their professors and the faculty.

·         Colleges that offer degree programs that run over a significantly shorter period of time. Example, 20 days.

If you keep the above points in mind, you should be able to find an online degree that not only promises quality, but also a better, brighter future.

The key to finding employment with an online degree

25 Apr

Although online degrees are being increasingly accepted by prospective employers, entering the job market with an online degree can be nerve wracking. Inspite of having earned the degree through an accredited, reputed college, you might still find yourself feeling anxious about how it might be received by potential employers. While there’s always a chance of being met with skepticism, if you play your cards right, you could turn an interview around to your favor and find yourself a fulfilling, satisfying job with your degree. Here’s how:

Know your college accreditation well

Accreditation is a voluntary, review process that colleges undergo through neutral, third-party accrediting agencies. Accreditation can be of 3 kinds: regional, national and programmatic. These accrediting agencies should be recognized by the U.S. Department of Education (USDE) and/or the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA).

You should know facts about your college’s accreditation well in the event that a potential employer should ask you about it. An education from an accredited online college proves the legitimacy of your degree. When asked questions about the credibility of your degree, you should point out that an accreditation is a stamp of quality assurance and hence your degree is absolutely valid and genuine.

Speak of your goals and ambitions

Employers admire people with a passion to succeed and a drive to get there. Whatever your reason for choosing an online degree, an employer is bound to take note of your determination to get educated and reach your goals inspite of all the odds. Besides, an online degree is in no way easier than a standard on-ground degree. It might be more convenient, but it requires self-discipline, organization and dedication to get your work done well. These qualities are greatly appreciated and admired by a potential employer as they are always on the look-out for hard-working, sincere and responsible employees.

Speak of the skills you have acquired

One of the reasons employers are wary of hiring people with online degrees is because they are skeptical about the level of expertise and skills you can learn at online program as compared to a standard college.Respectable online colleges design their programs in a way that provides students with all the necessary skills and abilities to be eligible for jobs in their chosen fields. Some online colleges might require students to complete internships or on-ground training programs to enhance these skills. If you have received on-the-job training, be sure to mention it to your employer.

Speak of your program in detail

Most employers’ apprehension about online degrees stems from the fact that they don’t know enough about them. Talk about your program at length. Include details about assignments, group projects, internships, awards and certifications through the duration of your program. Speaking about how your program was conducted online could educate your employers about how online programs really work.

What you can do on your part, is to make sure you pursue a degree from an accredited online college. Student reviews about online colleges are a good place to start as they let you in on finer details about the college. Take for instance Independence University. Student reviews of Independence University speak about their career service programs, financial aid assistance programs for those who qualify and much more. If you’re curious about what the college can offer you, read a student review about Independence University to see if the college offers something that could interest you.

Ultimately, an individual’s desire to get educated is always going to be respected and admired. Be unafraid and go into the world with confidence and your head held high.

Misconceptions about Online Programs

25 Apr

Although online degree programs have gained popularity and acceptance over the past few years, students are still apprehensive about pursuing an online education. They might be worried about not having their degrees accepted by potential employers or worse, or falling prey to scams run bydiploma mills. While their fears are understandable, there are some misconceptions students carry about online degree programs and we’re going to discuss them in this article.

Online programs don’t require accreditation

Nothing could be further from the truth. It is important for a degree program, online and on-ground to be accredited. Accreditation provides reassurance about the quality of education and facilities offered by a college. More importantly, if your online college is not accredited by an accrediting agency (regional or national) recognized by the U.S. Department of Education (USDE) and/or the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA), your degree may not be accepted by potential employers and other colleges.

There are online colleges who claim to be accredited and promise to provide you with a degree for a simple sum of money and you’ll be a degree holder in just a few days. Such colleges are also known as ‘diploma or degree mills’. Keep your eye out for such fake colleges and check their accreditation on the USDE and CHEA websites.

Online degrees will not be accepted by future employers

This is a genuine fear but with time employers are becoming more accepting of online degrees. If you have a degree from an online college that has been accredited by a recognized accrediting agency, chances of having your degree be accepted by a potential employer are higher. The courses and the syllabus of an online program are the same as their on-ground counterparts. The only difference is the medium. During an interview, speak about the various projects you worked on, how you interacted with other students and your instructor and how the online program helped you achieve your personal goals. Speaking openly about your program convinces employers about its genuineness.

Online programs are less effective

Some students are under the impression that an online program might be less effective if they can’t interact with fellow students or have face-to-face contact with their instructors. The truth is that any respectable college worth its salt will do everything in its power to engage students. Furthermore, it’ll take extensive measures to make sure you get all the help you can get if you need it. Take for example, Independence University. Student reviews of Independence University speak of the measures taken by the college to encourage interaction amongst its students by promoting video chats, thread and forum discussions, message boards etc. Read a student review of Independence University to find out more about what student services the college offers. 

When choosing an online school, do your research well. Read up their college history and any review you might be able to find. Online education is by no means easier than standard on-ground degrees, it’s just more convenient. Keeping that in mind, beinga dedicated student will help you achieve maximum benefits from your online program.

Online degrees- on par with on-campus degrees

25 Apr

There are certain periods in a student’s life that stand out against the rest. Graduating from college is one such moment that defines a person’s life.However, after graduating high school, most students prefer to start working immediately, gain work experience and earn money. While such people might decide to return to college eventually, not everyone can afford to take time off from work and dedicate all their time to earn a degree. The solution? Pursuing a college degree online.

Granted, even today online degrees are met with skepticism by students, parents and employers. And if you’re considering applying for a degree online, you’re bound to wonder if potential employers will accept online degrees. But people with real limitations can’t afford to give up their jobs and other responsibilities. As time passes employers have increasingly come to understand student limitations and have realized that online programs are just as good as an on-campus degree.

In fact, you will find that most employers will not look upon an online degree any differently than a standard degree. The reason why online education has increasingly gained popularity today is because it gives people who are strapped down with familial responsibilities or a job, but  want to earn a bachelor’s degree to further their careers, a chance to pursue their personal and professional goals. An online education can be pursued from the comfort of a home at a time and pace most convenient to the student.

Once the decision of pursuing a degree online has been made, the task of being successful at the program depends entirely upon the student. Trying to find a balance between work and an online class can be challenging at first but ultimately, rewarding. This dedication and drive to succeed (and excel) is regarded well by employers, as these are qualities every employer wants from his employees.

Although you are still likely to receive some apprehension from potential employers, you can always point out that the curriculum for an online program is similar to that of traditional brick and mortar colleges. Securing financial aid for online colleges has also become a lot easier. Some online colleges also offer career services and other student services. Colleges like Independence University, offer online degree programs and providea number of student services to all their students.Reviews of Independence University can be found easily, providing transparency and clarity. Read a review of Independence University to find out more about what they have to offer their students.

One of the lesser talked about advantagesof online degrees is the fact that studying online and using various softwares to complete your assignments, makes you computer savvy. This gives you an edge because computer literacy is a skill most required by employers.

If anything, employers will always be impressed by your decision to continue an education inspite of demanding jobs and familial responsibilities. With the right education in a field that interests you from an accredited online college, you should have little to no problem finding a job.

 

How to make the most of an online degree program

25 Apr

Online education works great for busy, working adults and career-focused students who want to either acquire new skills or further those that they already possess. If you’re interested in an online program, you’ll want to make the most of it. Here’s the lowdown on things you can do to make the most of you online degree program, right from the selection of the program to finding a job.

Do a back-ground check

Once you’ve narrowed down your preferences of the degree you’d like to pursue, you begin your search for a college that’ll fit you right. But before looking into any college’s program you should educate yourself about the importance of accreditation.  An online college should be regionally or nationally accredited by an accrediting organization recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.

If the college fails to provide details about its accreditation, it should a raise a red flag for you as you might very well be dealing with a diploma mill. In addition to the institutional accreditation, it would help if their specialized programs have been accredited by a reputable accrediting organization.

An example of an accredited online college is Independence University. According to Independence University reviews, the college’s respiratory therapy program has been accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care (CoARC), also recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. You should read an Independence University review to find out more about the college and its accreditation.

Other than the accreditation, you should ask the college or try to find reviews talking about:

·         Student-teacher ratio

·         Student diversity

·         Online student services (such as career services, financial aid help offered by the college to those who qualify,etc)

·         Educational and professional qualifications of the faculty

Excel at your program

Pursuing a degree online is not as easy as it is convenient. While you have the freedom to study at your own pace, it could be very easy to fall back in classes if you don’t come up with a system to stay on top of things. Work out a routine which enables you to give your program its due attention. Assignments won’t complete themselves and unless you’re willing to let your grades suffer, you’re going to have to be motivated and disciplined enough to get things done and do them right.

Make sure you have high-speed Internet connectivity along with the software you’ll need during the program. Take active part in student discussions and don’t be afraid to pose your doubts and queries to your instructors.

Finding employment

Online education is slowly but surely gaining recognition amongst employers. In the past, employers were apprehensive about hiring employees with online degrees because they were worried about the quality of education online students received. Others were doubtful of the authenticity of the degree with the abundance of diploma mills handing out fake degrees for a sum of money.

While you still might come across wary potential employers, there are ways to convince them about the credibility of your degree. For starters, there is little to no difference between the course curriculum of online programs and traditional on-campus programs. Hence, during an interview it would help if you be upfront about your education. Talk about things like your college’s accreditation, the way your classes were conducted, and the frequency with which your instructors and fellow students would interact with you. The employer is most likely to take note of your dedication and determination to educate yourself.

An online education can do wonders for your personal and professional growth if you learn how to make the most of it wisely.

Reasons to choose an Online MBA

25 Apr

An MBA might just be what most working professionals need to take their careers to greater heights. However, not everyone can afford to give up on their current jobs or other commitments in order to pursue a higher education. The solution? An online MBA degree program from an accredited college. But that isn’t the only reason for a student to take up an online MBA. Let’s take a look at some of the other reasons why students choose online MBA programs.

Increasing recognition

An MBA degree from an accredited institution reassures an employer about the authenticity of your MBA. It means that the education received is from a trusted institute that offers consistent quality education. With this knowledge, employers have become more accepting of online MBA degrees. And as time progresses they have increasingly come to recognize online degrees earned from accredited institutions.

Basic requirements

Many people put away the idea of a higher education because they’re either unable to find a good college within their vicinity or they can’t afford to apply to a college far away from home, taking living and traveling expenses into consideration. With an online MBA, you can choose an MBA program that fits your needs rather than your location. Your basic requirement would be a functioning computer with good internet connection and the software programs needed during the program.

Easier to afford

Attending a traditional brick and mortar college requires financial resources, traveling expenses and commitment of your time. Online colleges, in comparison to traditional brick and mortar colleges are relatively easier to afford. If you attend an accredited online college, you may be eligible to receive financial aid if you qualify.

Convenience

One of the biggest advantages of an online MBA is the fact that you can complete the program at a pace most convenient to you. You can pursue a program online without having to give up on other personal and professional commitments, while giving equal attention to all. All you need to do is learn how to manage your time effectively.

Knowledgeable instructors

Any respectable online college worth its salt will have instructors who are not only professionally qualified to teach an online MBA class, but also have experience working in the field they’re teaching so that should clear any doubts  you may have about not getting the right exposure or guidance from an instructor in an online MBA program.

Where you should start?

Once the decision to pursue an online MBA program has been made, the search for the right college begins. Several accredited colleges offer online MBA programs. Many online schools will help you get internships or even job interviews through their student services. One such college is Independence University. Independence University reviews shed light upon the college’s accreditation, student services and financial aid assistance programs for those who qualify. You should read an Independence University review to better understand what they might have to offer.

Don’t let financial constraints, familial or job responsibilities keep you from getting a higher education. Enroll in an online MBA program that will help you reach your full potential in the business world.

Mistakes online students generally make

25 Apr

If you plan on pursuing a degree online, you might want to avoid some of these mistakes most online students tend to make.

Fail to check out the accreditation

The importance of accreditation cannot be stressed enough (*link to importance of accreditation article). Not only does it provide you with the reassurance that the education you receive is of sound quality, but it also is important if you want to transfer credits to another college. Look into the college’s accreditation (regional or national) and make sure it is by an accrediting body recognized by the U.S. Department of Education (USDE) and/or the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA). You don’t want to make the mistake of falling prey to the advertising gimmicks of a diploma mill.

Not framing a concrete study schedule

An online degree program is convenient, but it is by no means easier than a standard degree. If your reason for opting for an online program is its rumored ease, then you should re-examine your reasons for studying online. Being successful at an online degree requires dedication, discipline and hard work. You should get into it prepared to give at least 8-10 hours of study time every week.Frame a concrete study plan around your work routine and stick to it. Otherwise you are most likely to fall behind in your classes.

Procrastinating

Online students tend to take their classes lightly or put off studying or completing assignments till the last minute, until it all piles up. That helps no one as the only person who will suffer because of it is you. Studying online helps you control when and how you study, but a careless attitude towards your studies will put you behind in your classes.

Not ask about the instructors

Since you’re going to end up spending big bucks on your education, you are fully entitled to know where you’re investing your money. Ask your college about its online instructors; their education and relevant work experience. Read student reviews to find out what the students think about their instructors.

Not ask for help

Should you fall behind in your classes you should reach out to your instructors for help. You can always participate in online group chats and forum discussions and contact your instructor via e-mail or Skype Online colleges try to make interaction with instructors and fellow students as easy as possible. Independence University is an example of a college that offers a variety of student services to help make it easier for its students. Since the Internet is a great tool to find information, you can easily find everything you need to know about the college, right from reviews to complaints about Independence University.

Not communicate with fellow students

Interacting with your peers can help you understand your courses better and can increase your productivity. Don’t shy away from engaging with other online students from your class take their suggestions and opinions and learn from it.

To be successful at an online program you should try to stay ahead of your classes and turn to yourinstructors when you need help. This way you are most likely to be successful at your program.

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