Category Archive: Degree Decisions
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With the influx of online degree programs for adult students, more adults are finding it easier to return to school. However, with the rising number of online degree programs to choose from, adult students are questioning which degree programs are most popular. Popularity can indicate a few different things. Firstly, popularity may mean more competition. The more adult students receiving an online degree, the more competition there will be in the job market once all of the students complete the program. On a more positive note, popular online degrees also illustrate that these degrees are great degrees to earn online. With so many adult students enrolling in certain online degree programs, we had to research why.
According to Yahoo!, a criminal justice degree is the best degree to earn online. Why is this true? Many attribute its popularity to the fact that many professionals earning a criminal justice degree online are still working in their criminal justice career. Most career paths in criminal justice require extra schooling, and with the option to earn online degrees more and more adults are signing up.
So what’s the second most popular college degree to earn online? You guessed it, business. The field of business has always been a popular field. Similar to criminal justice, many business professionals return to colleges and universities for additional schooling and higher degrees. With the option to earn an MBA degree online, no wonder so many adult students are enrolling in business online degree programs.
The third most popular college degree to earn online is a degree in healthcare. A career in healthcare requires professionals to be very computer literate. With almost all healthcare data stored on a computer, it’s no surprise that degrees in healthcare are now offered online.
IT (Information Technology) is a very popular college degree to earn online. Because IT professionals use computers each and every day throughout their career, earning a degree online prepares students for what their career will consist of. Becoming familiar with online courses will help adult students enrolled in online IT programs feel comfortable working with different computer systems throughout their career.
Last but not least, the fifth most popular online degree to earn is nursing. Because nursing requires a lot of clinical experience, some of the degree will have to be completed in hospitals to gain experience. But most of the courses that nursing students are required to take are now offered online! With nursing being such a popular and booming field, earning this degree online has really appealed to adult students.
So there you have it, the five most popular online degrees to earn according to Yahoo!. Will you follow the trend, or beat to the sound of your own drum?
As an adult returning to college you may be afraid, intimidated, or you just may not know what to expect. But it’s important for you to know you’re not the only one. There are many adults returning to college with the same fears and concerns you have. That’s why we’ve created a list of possible concerns you may be having, so you can stop having them and be confident and ready for this journey.
Concern 1: “I’m too old to become a student, what’s the point”
Adult students are more common than you think. Some colleges and universities even enroll more s than traditional ones. Adults are quickly realizing how important education is and how earning a college degree may open up many doors. If you plan on working for many more years and you want to increase your skills, than you’re not too old to earn your college degree. Adults are retiring later in life than ever before; if you think you’re too old for school, think again! 50 is the new 25 – so act accordingly!
Concern 2: “I don’t remember how to be a student.”
Sure, it may have been awhile since you’ve sat in a desk with the smell of chalk in the air. But that doesn’t mean you forgot how to be a student. In fact, adult students have an advantage being that they have real life experience. You may study differently than you did 20 years ago, but “different” could sometimes mean “better”. Believe it or not, you know more than you did as a young adult. You’ve been in contact with more people and you’ve been in more situations. Being a student is like riding a bike; once you learn it, you’ll never forget it.
Concern 3: “I don’t have time to earn my college degree”
Yes, earning a college degree is a time commitment but there are so many ways to incorporate studying and learning in your everyday life. Many schools for adults offer online degrees that be completed while you keep your career and whatever else your busy life may consist of. You may be one of the many adults that need a college degree in order to advance in your career. Many law enforcement professionals are in this position and end up enrolling in an online criminal justice degree program that could easily be completed from home. They get to keep their career and earn a degree.
Concern 4: “I can’t afford to earn my college degree”
Although earning a college degree can be costly, it’s a great investment! There are many adult students who have this same concern. Some are saving up for their children to attend college in the future and others just don’t have the extra cash. Based on a financial need basis, many adult students receive financial aid. You can apply for financial aid by going on the website and filling out your information. This information could take a while to fill out so it’s best to start early. Another way to save money is to rent your books or buy used books. It’s not just the tuition that costs people, but it’s also the room and board, books, and more. Figure out how much your education is going to cost you and figure out simple ways to reduce the cost. Whether that means carpooling or cutting back on that yearly vacation earning your college degree is certainly worth the cost.
Becoming a nontraditional student will be a transition and earning your college degree may be a challenge, but it will be rewarding in more ways than one. Write down the concerns you’re having and figure out ways to fix them. Once you see your fears written down you’ll realize that every obstacle you come up with has a solution.
With colleges and universities everywhere you turn, it can be difficult to decide which college is the right one for you. Should you earn your degree in a different state? How about a different country? Or maybe you should earn your college degree online? There are pros and cons to every big life decision you make, especially in college. That’s why we’ve created this checklist – to help make your decision an informed and easy one.
You should earn your college degree from a school in which you feel comfortable. Some students question how they’ll know what they do or don’t like about a school. How can you predict if you are going to enjoy the colleges and universities you’re interested in or not? Simply. Do you like rural or urban environments? Do you want to attend a small or big school? How safe is the campus? Once you figure out the environment you want to earn your college degree at, plan a visit and see for yourself.
As you earn your college degree, you will make connections with peers, professors, and employers. You may work as an intern and make professional connections that could land you a full-time career. The college or university you consider attending could be the location you end up living in for a large portion of your life. If you earn your degree in a city you hate, you may have to learn to love it, which is why you should visit and research the colleges and universities you’re interested in before earning your college degree there.
Although the thought of moving out-of-state or out of the country may be appealing to some, is it practical? You may have children, close friends and relatives, and a career where you currently live. It is important to consider colleges and universities that will not cause you to give up your life to earn your degree. With online degrees and many colleges and universities to choose from, earning your college degree shouldn’t be as much of a sacrifice as it once was.
Let’s say you are interested in earning your degree in Art. Before earning your college degree from just any art school, research the colleges and universities you’re interested in. Use search engines to research which art schools are the best in the nation or the best in the state you live in. You don’t have to attend the #1 art school, but you should shoot as high as possible.
Unfortunately, there are many colleges and universities that are not accredited. You don’t want to earn your college degree only to find out you can’t use it. Do your research and find out which colleges and universities are accredited and which aren’t accredited. There are many colleges and universities that will try to scam students, don’t be one of them.
Earning your college degree could take several years to complete depending on the program in which you’re enrolled. Don’t you want to spend those years in an environment you enjoy? And an environment that works for you and possibly your loved ones? Remember to focus on these 5 things when choosing which colleges and universities you want to earn your college degree from. Sure, this may take some time and effort but in the end it’ll be worth it.
All colleges and universities offering an accounting degree online have different requirements to get admitted. Depending on the school ranking determines how difficult the admission process will be for students. If you’re interested in earning an accounting degree online, prepare yourself by adhering to the following criteria:
- GPA- Whether it’s your college or high school GPA that you’ll be using to apply to an accounting degree online, it’s important that your GPA is decent and at least average. High ranking colleges and universities will require applicants to have very high GPAs in order to get admitted. Remember that earning an accounting degree online can be very competitive; therefore, try your best to earn the highest GPA possible.
- College Test Scores- ACT and SAT scores are weighed very heavily for applicants who wish to earn their accounting degree online. Colleges and universities want to make sure that students are well rounded in all subject areas. Because an accounting degree online touches on all different subject areas, colleges and universities rely heavily on these test scores to analyze students.
- Activities- If you lack in one area, it’s important to make up for it in another. Getting involved in clubs and organizations is an easy and fun way to add to your application. Colleges and universities really admire students who have become president of a club or organization because it shows initiative and leadership. Most students look past this area of the application, but most colleges and universities really stress the importance of getting involved in your schools and communities.
- Relevance- In order to be accepted to an accounting degree online program, it will help if you’ve had relevant experience. Although this is not mandatory, this is another way you can higher your chances of getting admitted to the colleges and universities you’re interested in. Whether you’ve gained experience through an internship or through volunteering, discuss it in your personal statement so that the colleges and universities you’re applying to are informed.
If you feel that your GPA is too low or your college tests scores are below what they should be, maybe it’s best to earn your accounting degree online at colleges and universities that are not as highly ranked. You will have a better chance of getting accepted and earning your accounting degree online. But be sure to check and make sure that the colleges and universities you’re interested in are accredited.
Children often dress-up as a superhero for fun, pretending to save the world. Aside from the red capes and supernatural powers, real life superheroes do exist. As a child, you may have known what a superhero was, but did you really know what crime was? Did you know how dangerous neighborhoods and schools could be? Maybe you did, maybe you didn’t; but today you do and now it’s time to do something to control crime.
By earning a criminal justice degree, you can live out your childhood dream and a criminal’s nightmare. There are many areas of criminal justice that you could possibly find a career in after earning a criminal justice degree. Become an FBI agent or a security guard. What about a detective or a fraud investigator? Often times, criminal acts go unnoticed when they shouldn’t. There are so many crimes that happen right before our eyes; in our neighborhoods; affecting our loved ones. With a criminal justice degree, you may not put a complete end to violence, but it’s a start. Some criminal behavior deals with finances and others deals with juvenile cases. There are so many different sectors of criminal justice that you could choose from. You have options with a criminal justice degree. Check out this list of careers from payscale.com and find which careers you can explore with a criminal justice degree and how much you could earn.
Before completing your criminal justice degree find out which career you’d enjoy working in. If you feel strongly about preventing crime in schools, you can become a security guard. Or, pursue a career in forensics and analyze crime scenes, behind the scenes. A great way to find out what interests you most is to shadow a professional. You can do this by contacting local professionals. Most professionals would love to help you because they remember when they were first earning their criminal justice degree. They’ll give you a clear understanding of what it’s like working a day in their shoes. Who knows, this person may open up doors for you after graduating with your criminal justice degree. Not only will you learn the skills needed for the job, but you will also discover if the career interests you or not. Because many careers in criminal justice can deal with sensitive material, it is important to know how much you can handle. Could you work on a crime scene? Could you put your life at risk to save others? These questions aren’t meant to scare potential criminal justice degree seekers away, but these questions instead are meant to prepare students for what a career in the field could deal with. A ride-along with a professional could easily answer these questions so you’ll have a clearer understanding of what your career will really consist of.
Another way to build skills and gain experience in the field is to volunteer. There are many opportunities to volunteer your time while earning your criminal justice degree. You could volunteer to walk students home from the library, a program most large colleges and universities have. You could join clubs that deal with criminal justice. Many colleges and universities organize clubs for particular majors. Ask other criminal justice degree seekers what they’ve done to prepare for a career in the field. If you can get a hold of Batman, Superman, or Spiderman- more power to you!
Before beginning any college classes, it’s important to know what type of student you are. We’re not talking about jocks vs. non-jocks… we’re talking about the way you study and interact in the classroom. Read the following student descriptions and the problems each student faces to determine which student represents you best.
- Slacker Sam - Sam is studying business and he’s very intelligent, yet his GPA is suffering. Since Sam has always been told that he’s intelligent, he doesn’t feel the need to attend the “unnecessary classes” (note: there is no such thing). Sam goes to class a few times a week and still does well on the tests. So why is his GPA so low? Well, participation is a large percent of class grades and that is where Sam lacks. Sam doesn’t like going to class and participating because sometimes he feels that he already knows what the teacher is saying. “Class is for people that need to learn, not me. I’m just here to earn my degree” is the attitude that Sam has. Not only is Sam’s GPA suffering, but when it’s time to apply to MBA programs he will have a hard time asking professors for recommendations. To them, Sam is just a name without a face.
- Distracted Denise- Denise goes to every class, every day. She truly enjoys her classes in photography. In the beginning of the semester Denise is very attentive, she studies a few weeks before each exam, and does pretty well on them with so much preparation. As the semester continues, Denise gets a little lazy. Although she still goes to class, her mind is in another place. Either she’s texting her friends about weekend plans or she just falls asleep in her desk. She wishes that she could maintain the same enthusiasm about school throughout the entire semester, but this seems to always be an issue for her.
- Virtual Valerie- Valerie has just started earning an online degree. This seemed to be a great way for her to earn a degree because she already works full-time. The problem that Valerie is facing is a lack of motivation. Sure, she has the time after work to study and interact on online message boards, but instead she takes a long bath and watches T.V. She’s starting to think that an online degree may be for a more structured student, something she’s never been much of.
- Anti-social Andy- Andy is a straight A student. He has never missed a day of college in his entire college career. He has a 4.0 GPA and is involved in a number of organizations. Sure, Andy has great grades and is an excellent student, but he has a hard time working with others because he is a perfectionist. When Andy is in class, he dreads hearing the words “group work” because he’d rather just work alone. Andy hopes he can overcome this struggle so that he can one day work well with others in the workplace.
- Overworked Owen- Owen has four daughters all under the age of 10. He thought that he’d be able to manage a full-time job and attend full-time school, but he’s starting to think again. Owen is starting to wish that he chose to earn an online degree because he misses being home with his family, and they miss him too. Owen wakes up at 6 a.m. to start working and goes directly to night class from work with no time to study. His grades are suffering, but he just can’t seem to find enough time in the day to do everything he’s supposed to do.
How would you fix these students problems? Come up with methods for them to be better students. Sometimes seeing problems in someone else’s life are easier to fix than when they are your own. Use the methods you came up with to help yourself become a better student. It is important to remember that no student is perfect. Figure out where your flaws are and work on them to avoid any obstacles throughout your college career.
Earning a college education is quickly becoming a reality for more than just high school graduates; many adults are choosing to go back to school to transition careers or to gain a competitive edge over their peers. Whatever your reason may be, choosing a degree or certificate program is an important decision that takes careful consideration. To help make your decisions easier, we’ve put together a list of 5 easy ways to search degree or certificate programs that best match your interests and goals.
1. On-campus or online?
When searching degree programs that fit you best, it’s important to be realistic and consider your lifestyle and study habits. Are you a self-starter who will stick to a study routine without needing to be accountable to a professor? Do you work full-time and need to find a degree program that works around your schedule? If the answers are yes, then searching for online degree programs may suit you. Online degree programs also free you from travel expenses to and from campus. Be sure to find accredited online schools while conducting your search, or your college credits won’t be valid.
2. Search degrees or certificates that are in high-demand.
While you continue your degree search to find the perfect match, searching degrees that are in high-demand will ensure lots of job opportunities after graduation. If you’re transitioning between careers, search degree types with job opportunities that will propel your career, not let it remain stagnant.
3. If you already have a degree, is there a certificate program available?
If you already hold a degree, it might be wise to search degree endorsements, certificates, and licensing that can be used with your current degree. Medical Billing or Paralegals are popular examples of certificate programs that result in well-paid positions.
4. Know what you DON’T want to find and what you DO want before you search degree programs.
Is it important to you that your work results in some social benefit? Do you have qualms with business practices taught in certain industries? It’s important to keep your personal values in mind while you search degrees and schools. It may be harder for you to succeed if you’re compromising your values.
5. Consider the time it will take to complete the degree (and make sure the commitment is feasible).
Refer to tip #1 – be realistic about your lifestyle and how much you’re willing to sacrifice while you’re enrolled in school. As you’ll learn when searching degree types, an undergraduate degree takes from 2-4 years, Master’s Degree take 1.5-2 years, and Doctorate or PhD upwards to 5-6 years. These time commitments will impact your family and social time. Even online degree programs require a lot of time and dedication.