Is Online Learning for You?

Many companies emphasize higher education for hiring and promotion. College and post-graduate studies often help employees advance faster. The gap between their education and employers’ expectations make many workers consider returning to university. This, however, can present challenges.

A job, family responsibilities, and travel requirements make returning to the campus difficult. These rule out even part-time college attendance for many people. Distance education offers a solution. Online distance learning programs provide many educational opportunities. They allow busy people to study without giving up their jobs. Technological advances let students receive advanced education while preserving content and quality.

Excelsior College of Albany, New York surveyed 1,547 CEOs and small business owners in 2007. Sixty-one percent said they knew about distance learning, and 83 percent of these agreed that an online degree was credible. Eduventures of Boston surveyed 500 HR training managers. Sixty-two percent said online education could equal traditional college. The surveys show distance learning is gaining acceptance.

Online universities differ. Enroll in accredited institutions of higher education. Accreditation suggests legitimacy and quality. Consider traditional universities with recognized online education courses. Many offer the same courses with the flexibility of online institutions. Lesley University’s head of online division, Maureen Brown, said their graduates get jobs because they have Lesley University degrees. Companies take into account the university’s name before the type of program.

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