What Employers Really Think of Online Degrees
Online education has become more popular in recent years. Thousands of people regularly graduate from such programs, whether it’s a special education degree online or an online MBA program. However, many people who are considering their educational options are hesitant about online programs. They worry that the education they’ll receive won’t be quite as good as what they would get in a more traditional setting. They also worry that employers won’t take their degrees as seriously as traditional ones.
The Truth About Online Degrees
Fortunately, these worries can be put to rest. Online degrees have increased in both popularity and in quality. Employers are now much more accepting of them. In a study published by The Online Journal of Distance Learning Administration, hiring managers reported that they view degrees from online institutions as equal to those from traditional ones.
According to Excelsior College and Zogby International, 61 percent of CEOs as well as small-business owners are familiar with online educational institutions. They know that they provide a real alternative to traditional education. Eighty-three percent of executives find that the degrees received from reputable online institutions are just as credible.
It’s not all simply about the online degree though. Employers consider the online institution that the person received the degree from, too. They often will research the institution to determine its reputation.
How to Know if an Online Education Is a Good Idea
One of the biggest predictors of the credibility of your online degree is if the educational institution has a physical location. Many universities are now offering both on-campus and online learning. The reputation the university has on campus then translates to the online programs offered.
Another way to determine if a college degree program will get you the esteem you want is to check its accreditation. An online institution should be accredited by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation. If it isn’t, be wary of seeking your degree from it.
Just like anything else, there will always be pluses and minuses. While online degree programs aren’t able to give students the entire college experience, it does make education more accessible for people who otherwise wouldn’t have such opportunities, such as those who work full-time or are limited by their location.
The Future of Employers’ Views of Online Education
If you were to ask employers a few years ago what they thought of online degrees, they would have likely given more negative responses. However, with the increase in colleges and universities including online degree programs as part of their overall education, many employers view online degrees in a much better light.
The future of online education is positive. Just as with any change, people are skeptical until they see results come of it. As more people complete online degree programs and prove themselves valuable additions to companies and organizations, more employers will want to hire people with these degree types.
You Can Earn a Degree Online
Now that you know that an online degree is considered just as good as one from a traditional degree program, start your search for a reputable online education institution that will meet your needs. Research its reputation, accreditation, and if possible, ask any hiring managers, your peers and other professionals what their thoughts are of the school.
By choosing an online institution with a positive reputation, you can achieve your goal of earning an undergraduate degree. Then you can pursue the career you have always wanted.
About the Author: Sydney Simmons is a contributing blogger and Philadelphia resident who is studying for her PA teacher certification online. She was skeptical of online degrees at first, but has changed her mind.