Are Online Degrees Worth It? Here Is What Employers Think Of It
Online degrees including the masters are looked upon with a certain degree of suspicion. This is so especially since schools now practically hawk degrees online with annoying pop up adverts even on social media. The traditional view has been that students should be the very ones seeking out the schools of their choice. So when students see schools who soliciting for admissions online, it tends to put them on red alert. It is more like a woman trying to woo a man. All can’t certainly be well.
With that said, online degrees do have their positives. They offer the working class the opportunity to live their dreams pursuing their dream careers while also working at the same time. So they can juggle both work, school and family all at the same time while fulfilling needed credit hours of school work. Inviting, right? Again the fact that a student was able to combine these array of things all at the same time would endear them to employers. It would demonstrate their ability to multi-task at work (a skill in high demand in the 21st century job market).
Even recent surveys conducted to determine employer’s perception of online degrees would be music to the ears of online-degree holders. In a survey done by online institution Excelsior College & Zogby International, they found out that 83% of the executive find online degrees credible.
But in terms of employability, employers often take into account a number considerations before deciding whether to employ a particular candidate holding an online degree. They are listed below
As earlier said, employers do have their doubts about online degrees since they are usually not proctored. This leaves the risk that students could engage in some foul play in getting their degrees. However employers would be willing to look past that if the on-line degree was obtained from an accredited school.
(2) Reputation of the Institution
Some less than reputable schools have been known to award degrees for money in the past. The more reputable the awarding institution is the more likely employers will accept your degree.
(3) Similarity with the traditional degree
Almost all on-line degrees are similar to the traditional degrees offered to students graduating from the same course. But it’s still worth it to find out if both degrees are similar. If however there’re discrepancies then you should steer clear.
(4) Duration of study.
The duration of your on-line degree matters. The fact that it took you less time to complete your on-line degree than it would normally take to complete the formal degree could scare potential employers. They may think you acquired the degree.
(5) Nature of the discipline
Online degrees are virtual in themselves since they involve long distance learning. So they may only be relevant for certain fields. Due to the tasking and hands-on nature of some disciplines, employers may feel that a traditional degree tailored through classroom teaching and clinics would better prepare students for the intricacies of their undertakings than an on-line degree. So ensure you find out the demands of your field before you ever decide to pursue an on-line degree.
This may also be an important consideration employers may take. Were your professors and lecturers accessibility during the course of obtaining your degree? Were you able to reach them whenever you had important questions that needed answering?
(7) The experiences of your potential employer
While some employers are generally open to the idea of hiring on-line degree holders since they may either hold such degrees themselves or have employees in their establishment who do. Others may not thrill to the idea since they hold traditional degrees in your discipline. So before you approach any employer, it is important you run a background check on your interviewer and the employees within the establishment to know if there those with similar degrees. You can at least appeal to this when making out your case to the prospective employer.
A youngish lawyer with penetrating insight, Patrick Herbert is the Editor-in-Chief and founder of Lawstudenthub, a site dedicated to helping new wigs find their footing in a trickily slippery legal profession and stay current with emerging developments in the legal industry. He holds an LL.B from the University of Benin and a BL from the Nigerian Law School, Abuja.
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