Congratulations on your decision to improve your life through education! If you’re reading this article, odds are you’re ready to embark on an exciting new stage in your life. But that doesn’t mean you have all the answers, and that’s okay. You’re probably wondering how much college is going to cost, how you’re going to pay for it, where you should attend and what you can expect.
If you haven’t already, you might want to consider earning your degree online. Many accredited online psychology programs are available throughout the nation, and this format offers considerable benefits over traditional degree programs. Read on for more information and find out if earning a degree online might be right for you!
Accreditation is one of, if not the, most important things to consider when researching programs, especially in the world of online learning. Accrediting bodies in the U.S. exist to ensure that the curriculum taught at colleges and universities meet national standards of excellence. If you earn a degree at an institution that isn’t accredited, it can make it more difficult to transfer credits or enroll in graduate school. Plus, unaccredited degrees are far less impressive to employers.
If you are currently enrolled in an unaccredited program, it is advisable to withdraw and re-enroll in an accredited program at your earliest convenience. Typically for-profit online colleges are not accredited, but many colleges offer accredited psychology degrees online or in a blended format that supplements traditional coursework.
Your Education, Your Way.
Online classes allow students to take courses in the format that best suits their busy lives. By using video conferencing, message boards, email and podcasts, students and professors can stay in contact no matter where they are. Students can maintain vibrant professional and social calendars, because lectures, tests and quizzes take place whenever it fits into the student’s schedule.
You can have it all. Keep your job, honor your family obligations and go to college—all from the comfort of your living room. Why shouldn’t your education fit your life? Online classes are organized with busy adults in mind. You don’t have to compromise to build a better future for yourself through education.
Attending college in America can be expensive. Tuition, books, room and board and incidentals all add up. But that doesn’t mean a college education is unattainable. Many students find that attending classes online helps them save money in the long run. While the tuition you’ll pay for an online degree is comparable to that of a traditional college education, online students often save money over their brick and mortar peers. For starters, there are no relocation or commuter costs for online students, because the classroom is whatever room you’re in! Not to mention that federal student aid, military education benefits and most private scholarships are applicable to accredited online degree programs. Plus, many colleges offer all the textbooks and materials you’ll need online for free. All you need is a computer, an Internet connection and the desire to learn.
Just because you’re not in a classroom doesn’t mean you have to go it alone. Students are encouraged and often required to maintain discourse through message boards, social media or other outlets. Learning is a collaborative effort, and quality online classes attempt to recreate the community of traditional courses through digital media and new technology.
Teachers are never far from reach, either. Class sizes remain small in many online courses, so that teachers have plenty of time to review each student’s work and provide quality feedback. Plus, professors are also able to be reached through email, and some even keep virtual office hours.
Many online schools offer 24/7 IT and tech support, as well as academic advisors and success coaches. Make sure the school you’re considering offers these services. You want to attend a college or university that is as invested in you as you are in them!
The instructors who lead online classes at quality, accredited universities are typically full- and part-time faculty and have undergone training to teach in this new, digital format. Many are active and accomplished in their field. Often, the same professors who teach on-campus classes lead or contribute to online classes. In every regard, colleges are trying to replicate and adapt the traditional style of learning so that students can receive a quality, thorough education no matter where they are.