Online degrees and certifications are becoming extremely popular for a variety of reasons. According to one study of past, present, and future online college students, there is a high perceived value of an online education.
The survey found that nearly two-thirds of online students do not even consider getting a degree in a classroom-only setting. A far change from a short 10 years ago.
In fact, if an online program was not available, 45% of the students said they would not have pursued the degree in the first place. Granted, this fact could be very well influenced by the sample, of which 55% had experience with online study.
Online Degree Appeal
Getting an online degree is very appealing to the modern student. Learners indicated that the primary advantages include:
- Ability to study wherever and whenever
- Flexibility to study around work obligations
- Ability to study at own pace
- Study at home eliminates travel
- Lower costs
- Flexibility to study around family obligations
While most (if not all) elearning degree programs offer these benefits, there are other factors that prospective students indicate they look for when choosing an online program.
- 44% look at school reputation
- 38% want no set class meeting times
- 35% care about tuition and fees (the first point is a driving influence of this)
- 32% value the amount of transfer credits accepted
- 31% want a personal academic advisor with regular contact
Interestingly, what learners indicate as most important in an online educational program is the same as what is valued in traditional institutions – primarily in regards to reputation and tution (cost).
For students who have taken an online program in the past, 65% indicated that it was completely worth the financial investment (31% – somewhat, 4% – not at all).
Similar sentiments are expressed involving opinions of the time investment, where 72% of respondents indicated the time they spent with their online education was completely worth it (24% – somewhat, 4% not at all).
For more details on this study, head on over to this page on the LearningHouse website.