For many people, an online degree is the only kind they can acquire. They cannot afford to go to college or university. They need a job to pay for the rent and bills. They need to take care of their families. And yet, they want to earn a degree and use it for a job later on. They’re worried that employers won’t take their online degrees seriously. Is there a cause for worry?
The truth is that most employers accept online degrees. You can have a paralegal certificate online, and most lawyers would be willing to hire you. But there are certain things they watch out for to determine the eligibility and legitimacy of your online degree.
Legitimate Online Courses
Did you take your online degree from a certified and licensed college or university? Many colleges and universities, especially the ones from abroad, offer online degrees. Make sure that these are accredited programs. There are two types of accreditation: national and regional accreditation. As a general rule of thumb, regional accreditation carries more merit.
The employers would want to know if you completed 100% of the degree online or if you attended a hybrid program. Some programs are a mix of online and on-campus interaction. This means that you have to meet with your professors and classmates at least once a week or a month.
What kind of educational experience did you have with this online program? Did you complete the coursework? Did you finish a thesis or a term paper? Did you defend this research paper in front of a panel? The length of the degree program will also be considered. If it’s too short, it will arouse suspicions in the employers. You need to tell the prospective employers the things you learned in the program and how these can be applied in your job.
Company views still vary on online degrees. Most tech companies are very welcoming of candidates who got their degrees online. But some companies, specifically those in the human resources industry, are still wary of online degrees. They may not view your online degree as equal to candidates who got theirs the traditional way.
What kind of degree did you finish? Associate’s? Bachelor’s? Master’s? For many employers, the way you acquired your degree—whether online or traditional—is irrelevant. What they want to know is the level of degree you attained. The higher the degree, the more they are likely to hire you for the job. For example, you have a master’s degree in computer science from a reputable institution that offers an online program. This would be looked kindlier at by employers than someone who applied with only a bachelor’s degree in tow.
When applying for any job in any company, make sure that you are armed with the necessary skills and level of educational attainment. Whether you got your degree online or the traditional way mostly doesn’t matter. Since about 70% of employers have hired candidates with online degrees, what you need to do is to impress your bosses the moment you set foot in their offices.