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Should I Get My Bachelors Degree Online?

With the proliferation of the internet access to higher education has become easier than ever before.
Many adults and even young people who never had the chance to obtain their Bachelor's Degree can now do so through various distance learning programs in an almost unlimited number of subjects.
Online education can offer many advantages, especially to those where a traditional school is not an option.
Still, there are some important things to keep in mind before you jump into an Online Bachelor Degree program.
Just like traditional schools, not all online bachelor degree programs are the same.
There are those schools that are 'virtual' and don't have an actual physical presence.
Then there are 'distance learning' variants from traditional schools.
Distance learning programs from established schools have the advantage of having the same value and reputation as the school that issues the degree.
This can be great if you obtain a degree from a major institution that offers an online option.
In the job market, school reputation can be an important factor in gaining interviews and competing against other job seekers.
Some nationally recognized traditional schools that offer great Online Bachelor Degree programs include Adelphi University, Boston University, Berkeley College in New York, several of the UC Schools in California, Colorado State University and New York University among others.
These online variants of traditional degree programs are nice in that no one will know that your "NYU" degree was gotten online.
It will hold the same weight as if you lived in NYC and completed it in person.
But with the added prestige of obtaining a degree from one of these schools also comes the reality that they typically are more expensive than lesser known online programs.
For that reason many people choose to pursue their Online Bachelor Degree from one of the many quality 'virtual' schools such as The University of Phoenix, Devry, Kaplan or WGU.
These virtual schools offer much of the experience of the traditional schools but without the cost and often with more lax admission standards.
One important factor to consider however is whether or not the institutional is accredited.
Accredited institutions usually only accept course credits from other accredited schools.
This can be important if you plan on pursuing a Masters Level Degree down the road.
For this reason, I would definitely recommend you steer away from non-accredited programs.
While they can save you money, they limit your options and might not be as respected in certain career fields.
One thing to keep in mind when considering obtaining your Bachelor Degree online is whether employers will accept the degree as readily and with as much respect as a traditional degree program.
For most liberal arts related fields that are not top tier firms this usually will not be an issue.
In fact, most employers will not even know your degree was achieved online.
In certain fields however, it will make a difference.
Those areas of study that require hands-on practical experience as well as mandatory hours of intern or externships such as nursing and certain physical sciences might not be accepted by employers.
Additionally, one should remember before one embarks on a fully online degree program that you will be missing out on many of the internship, network building and personal growth experiences that one does when in a traditional school.
A great number of people get their first career job after college through internships and personal connections they made during school.
This should not be downplayed.
With that said, for certain individuals an Online Bachelor Degree can be a good choice.
Especially for those already working, those where funds or time preclude a regular school, or those that already have a traditional degree but want to simply learn a new subject where the reputation of the school or the benefits of a 'brick and mortar' institution are not important.
Online Bachelor Degrees open up the world of higher education to a broader audience than ever before.
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