Online college education programs have become a popular method for completing college coursework and degrees. Internet programs can be convenient, effective, and a great way for busy people to achieve their degrees. However, with the explosion in online classes and schools, one has to be sure that they are obtaining an education from a reliable web based institution. Below are some tips to ensure that you are receiving a legitimate diploma.
First, ask the University or college if they are accredited. If they are not, your certificate will not be considered valid with most employers. If they state that they are, ask to see their accreditation. A legitimate college will either send you information or direct you to a location in which you can find and read about their credentials.
Next, inquire about the schools teaching staff. All instructors teaching college or masters level courses should have at least a Masters degree in the area that they are teaching. Many will have Doctorates in addition to graduate coursework. If an online school tells you that their teachers have Bachelor’s degrees, this is a sign that the school may not be credible.
Furthermore, many accredited schools require that their instructors have at least 2 years of teaching or job experience in the area that they are instructing prior to conducting a class. If the instructors just finished a Masters or Doctoral program and do not have any work experience in that field, this may be a clue that the University is not accredited.
In addition, legitimate web schools will have guidance, financial, and academic counsel to help you through the process with scheduling classes, financial aid, and answering any questions or concerns. Credible schools work very hard at walking students through the process and assisting them with any problems relating to teachers, coursework, or other students. If you are not receiving this type of one-on-one attention, it may be a sign that the school is not credible.
Lastly, make sure to get detailed information concerning coursework and curriculum. Accredited schools follow a very specifically designed curriculum. The curriculum should be similar in learning objectives, coursework, and requirements as a traditional school. This means that students have to work for their grades. A legitimate online school will make it a point to let you know that you will need to work hard, be disciplined, and that the classes will not be easy. However, counselers will be there to help you and find tutoring and recourses if needed. If a school tells you that the courses should not be too hard or that it is easy to get good grades, it is a clue that they are strictly passing students through without much regard to learning.
When searching for an online program, make sure to ask questions regarding accreditation, instructors, counselors, and curriculum. By asking these questions, one can ensure that they are receiving a legitimate education from a good school.