Why Online Degrees Are More Popular Than Ever

BBC Director-General Tony Hall receives an Honorary Doctorate from the University of South Wales (PRNewsFoto/University of South Wales)

Some say this decade marks the beginning of the golden age for remote education, and there’s plenty of evidence to back up the claim. Online degrees are more popular than ever before because they’re convenient, affordable, offer the chance to get a diploma from schools around the world without having to leave home, and have earned the respect of major employers in virtually every industry. Here’s a closer look at the specific reasons millions of young and middle-aged adults are seeking out online college and graduate school degree programs.


Getting a remote degree usually costs much less than traditional classroom instruction. Still, a four-year program can be costly. Prospective pupils take advantage of student loans to cover enrollment fees, tuition, and other costs. In fact, if you opt for non-traditional classes for your undergraduate coursework, you can even apply for your student loan online. That means quick processing and the chance to obtain education financing at low interest rates and competitive terms. In all, if you are interested in earning a university-level diploma from the comfort of your home, your total expenses will be significantly lower than they would be for traditional, in-class curricula.

Geographical Choice

What if you live and work in a small Midwestern city but want to earn an MBA from a major university hundreds or even thousands of miles away? You could uproot your life and move across the country to attend in-person classes. Or simply sign up for the school’s internet connected option. Geographic choice is one of the unique advantages for remote students and is helping colleges and universities widen their recruiting base. This factor is yet another way to cut your total education expenses. When you can stay put in your hometown, not have to commute anywhere, and still get the advantage of attending your favorite institution, all the old assumptions go out the window. Today, getting an education is a whole new ball game.

Self-Paced Study

When you attend all your classes via a computer monitor and email homework assignments to your instructors for grading, there’s no need to finish a set number of credit hours within a certain time frame. Most computer-based degree programs are self-paced, which means you won’t have to quit your job to earn a diploma. One of the main reasons so many mid-career professionals opt for e-degrees is financial stability. When you can take courses at your own pace on weekends and week nights, there’s no reason to change your job schedule or even quit work to dive into your coursework.

Widespread Acceptance

In the past decade, major employers all over the world have begun to recognize the quality of non-traditional study methods. That’s why most job interviewers and human resource managers no longer make a distinction between traditional and e-diplomas. At one time, the latter was looked down upon, but that’s no longer the case. If you hold an e-MBA, for example, you’ll be able to compete for corporate positions with job candidates who went the old-fashioned route by residing in a university dorm for two years while they amassed enough credits to get those letters after their names.

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