Looking to earn a college education? Going online offers a more adaptable way to prepare for your desired career.
For people wanting to invest in an education, earning an online college degree might be worth a closer look.
Rich Feller, a career counseling expert, says online degree programs give you plenty of opportunities to put your educational investment to good use.
"As an investment, online education is a creative way for people to learn competencies in the work force and get the credentials they need," says Feller, president of the National Career Development Association, a trade organization for career counseling. "It also gives people maximum flexibility and more choices they need."
When looking for an online education program, check out the following five versatile degrees.
Online Degree #1 - Bachelor's in Business Administration
An online bachelor's degree in business administration usually teaches you about the world of finance and commerce - offering lessons you could use in a professional setting.
"It's a degree that allows you to apply information from the classroom right into the workplace," Feller says. "It has immediate implications for people who want to use the new models and concepts they learn and be able to use them tomorrow."
In an online bachelor's in business administration program, students will likely study the principles of buying and selling goods and services, as well as the inner workings of corporations.
Students in this program usually take courses in economics, management, principles of marketing, business law, and business communications, according to the College Board, an educational organization that administers aptitude tests like the SAT.*
Online Degree #2 - Bachelor's in Education
Earning an online bachelor's degree in education could prepare you to teach in both traditional face-to-face classrooms and virtual classrooms, according to Feller.
And with a variety of specializations offered, such as special education, child education, and K-12 education, it's no wonder that this online degree is growing in popularity.
According to "Hot Programs and Hot Markets," a 2009 report by the Boston-based educational research firm, Eduventures, enrollment in online bachelor's programs in education grew 22 percent from fall 2008 to fall 2009, making it one of the leaders of online options.
Educational psychology, teaching methods, and instructional technology are generally the courses taken by students in this online program.*
Online Degree #3 - Bachelor's in Criminal Justice
A bachelor's degree in criminal justice is a great option for people interested in pursuing a career in the justice system, as well as those who are already in the field, but looking to advance their careers.
"It's a great investment because police work now requires degrees for promotions or leadership positions," Feller says. "An online degree in criminal justice might allow people to compete for new jobs or move into management. A security guard or volunteer firefighter might use the degree to advance their career."
Online criminal justice majors often study the entire gamut of crime, law, and the judicial system. Courses are likely to include criminal-justice research methods, juvenile justice, criminal law, and policing society.*
Online Degree #4 - Bachelor's in Accounting
If you enjoy working with numbers, you may want to consider pursuing an online education in accounting.
Feller says an online bachelor's degree in accounting could also help to prepare students for a profession that's using more computer-based know-how.
"Accounting is a stable field that's typically in high demand, but it's using technology more and more," Feller says. "The further along you are in terms of technology, the further along you are in being competitive."
As a student in an online accounting program, you will most likely prepare for an accounting career by taking courses such as business law, tax accounting, accounting information systems, and auditing.*
Online Degree #5 - Bachelor's in Computers and Information Systems
Do you have strong computer skills and want to put them to good use?
In an online bachelor's program in computers and information systems, you could study in the comfort of your own home while experiencing the advances of technology first hand.
"You are increasing the number of ways you can enter the technological work force by going online," Feller says. "It's all based on quality, cost, and the access you have to the program."
Some of the typical classes taken by online IT students include computer networking, database management systems, systems analysis, and design.*
*Data of typical courses for bachelor's degrees is supplied by the College Board.
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