They offer a host of advantages to people who would otherwise not be able to earn a degree; even so, online degrees are more than a few rungs lower in the professional world than their traditional counterparts. It’s not because they’re all inferior; rather, it’s the general perception that gives rise to this idea. Employers have been conditioned to think that people who have earned their degrees online are not as qualified as those who’ve spent four years in a traditional brick-and-mortar institute. And even though the trend is changing to reflect a more positive view of online degrees, there’s no harm in boosting your chance for suitable employment even though you’ve studied online:
- Choose a reputable college: This factor matters not just in the world of online degrees, but even in the realm of regular colleges – the name of your institution and its reputation matter immensely. An ordinary bachelor’s degree from MIT is much more valuable to employers than a doctorate that you’re earned at your local college. So when you choose to study online, choose a school that is well-known and recognized for its high standard of education.
- Ensure that the institute and the degree are accredited: Besides offering degrees that pose challenges for serious learners, online schools must rate high on credibility if they are to be taken seriously by employers. So ensure that both the school you choose and the degree you opt to study are accredited by the right agencies and that they’re recognized as legitimate in the professional world.
- Opt for a degree that is relevant to your chosen field of work: If it’s advancement at work you’re looking for, then choose a degree that will help you achieve the same instead of going back to school just for the sake of it. You may have a master’s or even doctoral degree, but if it’s not relevant to the field you work in, it’s not going to be of any use to you in the professional world.
- Augment it with practical experience: When your degree is augmented with a few years of practical experience, it gains in value and you’re likely to be rated higher by most employers. So make the most of your choice to earn a degree online and find an opportunity to work in the field you’re interested in simultaneously.
- Impress during your interview: It’s not necessary to stress in your resume that your degree is from an online school. Just list your qualifications and achievements and hope that you’re called for an interview where you can impress your potential employer with your confidence, gift of the gab, and professional acumen. Don’t lie about your degree, just don’t mention it at the outset before you’ve had a chance to impress your interviewer. When they realize your capabilities, they’re usually willing to overlook their prejudices towards online degrees.
Don’t regret your choice to learn online; instead, make the most of it and focus on securing a job of your choice.
This guest post is contributed by Anna Miller, who writes on the topic of online degrees. She welcomes your comments here or at her email id: firstname.lastname@example.org