Categorized | Education

The Right Online Learning Program

Posted on 22 February 2009

You are an intelligent, ambitious person, but you didn’t have the money or inclination to go to college after high school. Or maybe you did attend college, but your degree is in an area that doesn’t interest you anymore or is leading your career nowhere. Either way, you are stuck in a job that you can’t possibly do for the rest of your life. Sound familiar?

Next question: What’s your excuse for not going after the degree you need, for not doing what you really want?

Your reasons will likely amount to poor excuses. If you are reading this, you already have what it takes to earn a satisfying and lucrative new degree: a computer and an Internet connection.

Our online education remains a social experience. It very much imitates what goes on in a typical classroom.

Many reputable, accredited institutions of higher learning offer degree programs entirely online. Students get their lectures, questions, and assignments from an instructor, and then review them offline at their convenience. In other words, you don’t go to the university–the university comes to you.

Such is the slogan for the University of Phoenix. Founded in 1976, UOP is the largest private university in the United States, with 110,000 students currently enrolled throughout the country. Its founders pioneered the notion of catering to working adults via a “university without walls.” In fact, to enroll, you must be 22 years old and employed.

University of Phoenix Online is perhaps the biggest and oldest online university system, according to Brian Mueller, chief operating officer. UOP began enrolling online students in 1989. As a result, Mueller says, 35,000 students within the current UOP population are earning their degrees exclusively via online degree programs.

With the exception of its masters degree program in counseling, “Every degree program offered in our classrooms is also available online,” says Mueller. “A lot of people find that surprising.”

While the flexibility is undoubtedly appealing to many working adults, some fear that they may lack the self-motivation to complete a degree program within the comforts of home. Never fear, the school’s COO says. “It is so interactive, and there is so much contact with the instructors and other students, our online education remains a social experience,” Mueller says. “It very much imitates what goes on in a typical classroom.” There are some trade-offs for the online student. The program may be more demanding and time consuming, particularly since the emphasis is on writing, rather than testing. And because online courses cost the university more to operate than classroom programs (for the technical infrastructure and 24/7 tech support), tuition is 15 percent more than that paid by other students.

“It’s expensive,” says Mueller, “but there are huge dividends. Our graduation rate is very high. Ours is one of the first to offer a complete degree program online.”

Other benefits?

  • An extremely small class size, averaging 10 students
  • The world’s largest electronic library
  • All UOP students enjoy lifetime access to that library

Summing up, Mueller says: “The fact that we have built our programs for working adult students, who work one course at a time in an accelerated nature, and move through them sequentially in a non-nonsense manner, has been very attractive.”

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1 Comments For This Post

  1. Why Online University Degree? says:

    The online degree route has many advantages and benefits espcially for people who are working full-time and raising a family. The article precisly explains people, who have with dim knowledge about online eductaion, the benefits of studying online.

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  1. Dream Strategy » Blog Archive » Carnival of College Admission - A College Information Dream… A Dream Strategy that is! says:

    [...] school on-line?  Find out if it is right for you from  Thinking about The University of Phoenix?  “The Wrath of Khan” gives out some great info on the oldest online college and the many [...]

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