There are many great reasons for returning to college or university as an adult. Some people are looking to expand their overall knowledge of a particular subject, some are looking to retain their current jobs in a work environment where a college degree wasn’t previously required and now is, and some are looking to advance their careers through promotions, raises, and job changes. No matter the reason, knowing that one should return to college is fairly easy. The hard part is actually doing it.
For those that are looking to make the return, and make it as painless as possible, attending college or university online is a great option – for many reasons.
Taking courses online is convenient. Especially if one enrolls in an asynchronous (no set class time) program. Because there is no set class time, students have the option to complete coursework when it’s most convenient for them. This could be in the middle of the night when the rest of the family is asleep, in the airport and on airplanes when traveling for business, or in the lunchroom at work – anywhere with an Internet connection.
- Knowledge gained
Research shows that the knowledge gained in online college and university classes is essentially the same as that gained in face-to-face classes. The learning environment is different with new and innovative teaching methods, but the outcomes are not. And, you can enroll at the college or university you want – regardless of its location.
- Career opportunities
Today’s career opportunities are highly connected to education. Many jobs that ten years ago didn’t require any type of college degree are now requiring one, and many jobs that did require a college degree are now interested in those who have a graduate degree or advanced certificate. Employers are also seeking individuals who continue to learn throughout their career – not just prior to starting it.
- Earning power
According to Georgetown University’s Help Wanted: Projections of Jobs and Education Requirements through 2018 report, a Bachelor’s degree is worth about $1.1 million more earned in a lifetime than an Associate’s degree, and a Master’s degree is worth $457,000 more earned than a Bachelor’s degree. And a recent study by The Learning House, Inc. found that 45% of those who completed an online program within the past 12 months obtained pay increases, and 36% received promotions.
Many colleges and universities charge less tuition for online degrees and certificates than they do for face-to-face programs. Additionally, you don’t have the added expense of commuting to campus or paying for on-campus parking.
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