Best Degree Programs to Earn Online
Let’s face it—it’s harder to earn an online degree in some areas than others. Some industries have licensing restrictions that limit the type of education you have. In others, a more traditional mindset means that employers are likely to favor more traditional forms of education, whether that’s merited or not. Still, online education is more accepted now than ever. Here are a few industries where your online degree program is likely to take you far.
A teaching degree
Accredited online degree programs for teachers are now much larger than any traditional state university program—and this industry tends to be quite accepting of online degrees. Three of them are for-profit—including the University of Phoenix, Columbia University Teacher’s College, Walden University.
Traditional colleges still give out more Bachelor’s degrees in education than online programs. It’s the education Master’s degree that’s driving the expansion for online colleges. One reason for this may be that many aspiring teachers wind up earning their Master’s degree while working in teaching positions—some districts will even help you pay for tuition if you’re teaching in a high needs area. With so many nontraditional, working professionals getting their Master’s in teaching, it’s no wonder even traditional schools are feeling the demand for more online instruction in this area.
A business degree
An online MBA is another degree that employers often encourage their employees to earn—and that many employees earn on their own to qualify for better jobs and higher pay. Some employers will pay for tuition, and many see the online MBA positively. This isn’t surprising, considering how important the online sphere is in doing business these days. Online MBA programs allow students to fit studies around a full-time schedule, which companies and employees both benefit from.
A computer or IT degree
Traditionally one of the most accepting industries of online credentials, the IT industry is highly comfortable with learning through software in an online environment. In addition, the skills learned in IT degree programs translate well in an online environment—practical aspects of the course don’t usually need to be done in a special setting, as they would with, say, a nursing degree. The IT industry is the pioneer for online certifications and other credentials for professionals as well.
An accounting degree
Accounting is a sought-after degree—and as with IT, the skill sets you’re learning in finance classes translate easily to an online accounting program. Instruction on manage balance sheets, prepare tax filings, and interpret financial risks tends to translate well into an online environment. And while accounting is in high demand, it’s not as competitive as finance—where some employers at high-profile firms may favor the most exclusive degrees. Almost all companies need an accountant to provide specialized expertise—so you can work anywhere.
An online marketing degree
Online marketing is still a new field—but the payoffs for people who can make it work are huge. In addition, this creative field lives and breathes online—and isn’t likely to look down on an online marketing degree. In fact, to some employers, it would be an asset—clearly demonstrating your familiarity with various forms of online communication.
It’s not easy choosing which field to go into—or making the decision to earn an online rather than a traditional degree. But in these fields, choosing an accredited online degree program isn’t likely to be a decision you’ll regret. Consider enrolling in a degree program in education, accounting, IT, online media marketing, or business, and your employer is likely to be supportive—possibly supportive enough to help you out with tuition.
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