Second, make sure all target schools have been accredited by one of the six regional accrediting agencies and/or, if it's an online-only school, by the Distance Education and Training Council. Accreditation means potential colleges and its target programs have been thoroughly vetted by an independent higher education agency endorsed by the U.S. Department of Education (check out the best accredited online colleges of 2016). Finally, make sure you know exactly what you need from an online degree. The flexibility offered by many programs is great, but the curriculum, professors and resources should have the same quality as their campus counterparts. Don't be afraid to call up counselors and talk to current and former students.
Ask questions as soon as you have them. There's nothing worse than convincing yourself that you will eventually learn the subject and find out a week later that you still do not understand the topic. Generally with online classes, one week is built off the knowledge of the past week. If you do not understand week 1, you will have greater difficulty in week 2, and so on.

About 81% of online students are also employed, so the convenience of distance education works in their favor, allowing them to complete classes around their employment schedule. While almost 63% of students say that the courses they took were to further their career, only 17% claim that taking courses was due to a desire to change careers. These responses may suggest that many online students are looking to expand their current professional skills, including the skills needed for a job promotion, rather than shift career paths entirely.


Duke University is a private research university that is based in Durham North Carolina. Though Duke now has a campus including 254 buildings spanning 8,691 acres, it began in one building in the year 1838, a private subscription school called Brown’s Schoolhouse. It has also grown to serve more than 16,000 students from every corner of the world. The university has ranked among the top 10 in America in publications such as Forbes and U.S. News & World Report.
Student loans are also available through banks, credit unions, and other private institutions. However, students are urged to seek federal loans over private loans for several reasons. For one, federal loans are offered at a fixed interest rate while private loans come with a variable rate that is often higher. Additionally, loan repayments for federal aid are not required until the student leaves school or graduates. For private loans, students often need to begin paying back the money while they are still in school. Other benefits of federal loans include the possibilities of loan consolidation and loan forgiveness.
Both bachelor students and graduate students have the opportunity to complete an entire degree online while studying at the University of Denver. These programs are perfect for students with jobs, students in the military, or students who have familial obligations that need to be put first. Online students at the University of Denver will be learning from experienced teachers who are prepared to make learning in a virtual environment as approachable as possible. The school offers certificates, bachelor’s and graduate degrees online, and its University College is dedicated to helping adult learners complete their studies. Online students have the opportunity to take advantage of all resources provided for traditional students.

Fort Hays State University offers a total of 37 online bachelor's programs, including degrees with multiple concentration options in fields such as business education, elementary education, finance, information networking and telecommunications, and management. Other major options for online undergraduates include agricultural business, geography/GIS, organizational leadership, and an RN-to-BSN program. Online graduate students may choose from 17 master's degrees and a doctorate in nursing.
Several online programs, ranging from certificate to graduate, are available to students enrolled at Southwestern College. Online students may choose to complete one of these programs without ever having to actually be present on the Southwestern College campus. Other students interested in online learning may wish to consider a hybrid learning format, where they will split their academics between online and in-person learning. Hybrid students can make use of the flexibility afforded through online learning while also participating in many of the extracurricular activities available on the Southwestern College campus. Online classes are just as likely to be covered by financial aid as traditional courses.
A big reason for the growth in online education is demand. Online college programs make college more accessible to a much larger population than traditional on-campus learning. Thanks to technology, you can earn an online associate degree, online bachelor's degree or online master's degree without having to sacrifice your job or time caring for your family.
My tip for succeeding at online study is to make sure you learn how to navigate around your classroom home tabs. This is where you will find your weekly assignments and activities. You will also find your teacher info and fellow classmates for if you have questions. Learn your school website so you know how to access your library, upcoming classes, website info, technical support, and more. Also make sure you know how to contact your school, teachers, and other people when you have a question or concern. Take time to click on each tab on the school website to see what they all do and mean before you get started.
Through Bachelor of Arts completion programs and self-paced graduate programs, students will experience a customizable education experience with career-focused content. DU’s philosophy is to embrace technology to improve and accelerate learning for busy adults. Online classes present the same content and are driven by the same academic outcomes as campus-based classes but in a flexible, accessible, and affordable format.
Although online learning has removed many time and place barriers, it’s important to see which colleges in your state offer online programs. Attending a local college or university with online programs makes it easier to take advantage of physical resources or, if necessary, enroll in a hybrid program. Select a state below to learn more about its online learning landscape.
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University knows how to make education accessible for nontraditional students. Online learners have access to dedicated student advisors that help guide them through their program. And online degree programs feature multiple start times throughout the year, with 12 undergraduate and 10 graduate terms. This accelerated format propels students through the program in nine-week sessions.
All schools included above were required to offer at least 10 online degrees. Degree coverage was determined based on data from The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) and from schools' official websites, collected in 2018. Annual tuition data was collected from the NCES or a school representative. Recommend rates reflect internal data, which is calculated based on student reviews submitted to our partner site, GradReports.com.
California Coast University offers a low undergraduate tuition rate of $4,725 per year with interest-free payment plans starting at $100/month. In the online module, there are 13 undergraduate degree programs, 14 graduate degree programs, and 16 certificate or diploma programs. The average recommendation rate for this university is a solid 90% based on the reviews of 62 different students. The fully online degree and certificate programs have no set meetings times or group projects. Students are not required to be on campus or take exams on a specific date. CCU also offers academic credit for work experience or training for professionals hoping to earn an undergraduate degree. Graduate degree programs are $230-$290 per credit hour depending on the program.

Online courses often consist of required readings and lecture videos, which may be livestreamed or prerecorded. Distance learners can complete these assignments entirely online. Some courses also include discussion elements; in these cases, students typically participate in group chats with their professors and fellow classmates. Some online courses also feature in-person components, such as site-based practicum training. These courses are known as "blended" because they integrate online and brick-and-mortar elements.
Central Michigan University welcomes transfer students at all stages of their academic careers and from around the country (and even the world). The school simplifies the often stressful work of assessing transfer credit and has a generous transfer policy of 64 credits per degree program. Military students are also well supported at CMU Global Campus, with Military Transfer Credits and various support programs.

Roughly 90% of the university's students receive some form of financial aid, and Midway charges online students a flat, per-credit rate for in-state and out-of-state students. Transfer students from institutions in the Kentucky Community and Technical College System qualify for a $1,000 transfer scholarship. Additionally, the school charges lower tuition rates for those seeking an online RN-to-BSN degree. Midway University receives regional accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
University of Phoenix is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (http://hlcommission.org). Since 1978, University of Phoenix has been continually accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and its predecessor. University of Phoenix obtained its most recent 10-year Reaffirmation of Accreditation in 2012–13. The Higher Learning Commission conducted an interim Comprehensive Evaluation in 2018, and the next Comprehensive Evaluation for Reaffirmation of Accreditation is scheduled for 2022–23.
Northeastern divides its schedule into two standard semester terms and two condensed summer terms. Incoming freshmen may begin taking courses in the fall, spring, or summer. The school prices tuition according to course instead of according to a per-credit rate. Northeastern University receives regional accreditation from the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.
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