The online course space is getting quite crowded. Separate from the crowd by getting formal accreditation in your industry.
When you are first creating and selling courses the number one priority is to get the course launched and generating sales.
But as time goes on you will find yourself looking for ways to further differentiate and to add value to your offering. One of the best ways to do this is by getting your course officially accredited.
When a course is accredited it means that learners get formal continuing education units (CEUs) upon completing the material. Many professions require that people maintain a certain level of CEUs each year in order to stay in good standing.
If your course offers learners these formal CEUs, they will not only choose your course over a competitor who does not, they will actively seek you out!
That is just one of the many benefits of accreditation.
Getting Accredited is a Process
It takes more than filling out a form to get your material accredited. It’s a process, and that process depends on how you go about it.
In the United States there are two major certification organizations:
These two programs are designed to recognize professional programs. The process is a bit different if you are interested in accreditation for a formal education institutions. For example, you would need to look into the council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA).
If you have a course related to a profession then one of the two organizations listed above is the way to go. They have comprehensive process that you will need to follow. It will be a journey and will cost money but it’s a smart investment in your business.
Is It Worth It?
In short: yes.
Accreditation puts your program on an entirely different level. If it were easy to gain accreditation then everyone would do it – so if your course is accredited then it will naturally be seen as a higher quality offering (which could command a higher price).
Getting accredited also means that you have new avenues for marketing. Professional associations are more likely to list your CEU courses as options their members. You can sponsor events these professional associations put on, or even just participate for networking purposes.
If you’re really ambitious, you can apply to speak at these professional networking events – which is great visibility for both you and your course offering.
If you are thinking about accreditation for your own courses then I would encourage you to continue learning about the process. It is a great way to differentiate your offering, build credibility, and open up access to entirely new markets & opportunities.