Online Universities: an Inside Look

May 12, 2011 by  
Filed under About Online Degrees

Online Universities: an Inside Look

As online college courses increase in popularity, online college courses are a rapidly growing segment of the nation’s higher education curriculum.  In fact, over one-fifth of the higher education population of students is taking at least one online course, that is, 3.9 million students, in the fall of 2007, and this number was a 12% increase over the previous year (Staying the Course, Online Education in the United States, 2008, I. Elain Allen and Jeff Seaman, Sloan-C.org).  By the fall of 2008, it was expected that almost 2 million college students will be attending school without leaving home.  How do they do this?  By attending online universities…

Online Learning at Online Universities

When you pursue a degree at an online university, you take all of the classes required to get a degree entirely online.  In online learning, sometimes referred to as E-learning, teachers mostly use computer-based technologies such as video streaming, e-mail, or other technologies over the Internet to teach material to their students.  Online college students rarely attend school campuses because almost all, if not 100%, of their studying is done online.  Keep in mind that online universities may or may not have a local campus, but that should not deter you from believing the college is a reputable university; just make sure that the university is accredited by an outside accrediting agency such as Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools, New England Association of Schools and Colleges, North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, and Western Association of Schools and Colleges.  A great way to check accreditation is to visit the U.S. Department of Education Database of Accredited Postsecondary Institutions and Programs.

What To Expect From Online Universities

As mentioned above, when you attend an online university, you will be taught over the Internet via e-mail, video streaming, or other online technologies.  While some perceive this teaching method to be impersonal, it is quite the contrary.  The quality level of online teaching is equivalent to the quality level of face-to-face teaching methods on campus. Some would even argue that the quality level of online teaching instruction is higher because an online student would have constant personal interaction with the through e-mail or online chat rooms whereas students that attend college classes at a campus-based university may be in a class with 300 other students. 

With online universities, you can also expect to avoid travel costs, parking fees and the convenience and flexibility of studying on your own time.

A Wide Array of Degree Options From Online Universities

Is the degree you want to pursue unavailable at your local community college or university?  If this is the case, there is no need to move to a new city with a college or university that does; just pursue your degree online.  More and more online universities are increasing their program availability to cater to the needs of every student.  From art and design, business, and engineering, to criminal justice, education, and social science, almost every degree imaginable is available at an online university.  With hundreds of accredited online universities offering accredited online college degree programs, you can pursue just about any specialty you desire.

Online Universities: The Wave of the Future

With the economic downturn, more and more students are expected to attend an online university.  Though rising fuel costs may no longer be a factor, students have realized the benefits of attending an online university.  With the convenience, flexibility, and wide range of degree programs, student enrollment at online universities continue to excel.  Don’t get left behind!

Kimberly Diane Feb 10, 2009
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