What You Need to Know About Online Education

1. Determine How Much Time You Can Commit

An online setting for your school will still require that you create a set schedule
for your studying. You will need time for writing papers and contributing to
group projects. Although some schools might not require classroom attendance
at specific times, there may be required chat sessions. Most will have
deadlines on Sunday evenings for big assignments and deadlines throughout
the week for bulletin board posts. Determine if exams are online or if you will
have to travel to an approved location for a proctored exam. Some schools
offer accelerated or semester courses but each will require a lot of reading and

2. Determine Type of Accreditation

Familiarize yourself with regional accreditation. Any school you attend in the
US should be regionally accredited so that your courses are recognized and
are more likely to transfer. Some schools have multiple locations (satellite
schools) so you will have to make sure the one you are attending is also
accredited. Browse forums, websites, and news articles to learn what the
public perception of your school is. If you go to the FAFSA website, you can
learn more information about the retention and graduation rates of the school
you are considering.

3 Determine What Curriculum Fits Your Needs

Be careful of a degree program that has a lot of individual courses that really
could be combined into one course. Avoid courses that are unlikely to transfer
because they are geared toward your school only. See if there are options to
exam out of courses so you can save time and money. Decide if you prefer an
environment where class participation and group projects are mandatory or if
you'd prefer to just submit assignments without much interaction.

4 Academic Support
It can be easy to fall behind if you are dependent on emails and the telephone
to get assistance. Browse the faculty profiles and research the retention rates
of professors. Most will publish their resumes online so you might find that they
are working for the school on the side. Look at websites that publish student
reviews of professors. Make sure that free online tutoring is offered in case you
need it.

5 Software
Typically you will only need Microsoft Office (Excel, Microsoft Word, and
PowerPoint.) Be prepared to purchase these so that you can complete