For those of us who did not have the opportunity to go to college after high school, there are now a variety of colleges and institutions that offer online courses and degrees. But like anything else, one has to know what to check for when applying for online courses. Here are some things to consider what to check for when applying for online courses:
– Accreditation. Verify the accreditation of the school and verify the accrediting body which accredits it. These days, a lot of the major universities do offer online courses which are good but just in case the course you are looking for is not being offered in a well known institution, double check the institution that offers it. One of the best things to check its legitimacy is to see if it is state certified or regionally certified. In cases when the school is located internationally, check the veracity of its claims. It may take some time in researching for this but it is worth the effort in doing so. In most foreign countries, there is a government agency that handles higher learning facilities and these agencies have an online presence. A simple browse or perhaps an inquiring email may give you the answer.
– Research the faculty listing of the school you wish to enroll. This is a very important consideration in what to check for applying for an online course or degree. See where the faculty member graduates from and double check with that school did if indeed that faculty did graduate from that school. With prestigious universities, this is not a problem but sometimes the courses offered by them are limited and may not fit your specific needs.
– Be wary of schools that offer quick financial assistance anda course in miracles quick degree earning programs. More often than not, these “scholarships” are just a rouse to get you to enroll in a fly night operation of a diploma mill. These online degree programs, while convenient, do take time. A year in the program more often than not will not lead you to an undergraduate degree. If the normal time period for a bachelor’s degree is four years, expect the same amount of time or even more.
In the end, double check and use common sense in choosing your place to get a degree program. If you are able to, choose a university that you have heard about and is well known, and if it is in your vicinity or area, do take the course. These online degrees may ask you to come in to school at least once a semester. This may be a bit of an inconvenience but it insures you that you are enrolled in that institution and it also does give you a bit of the “college experience.”