What Is It Like To Learn and Study Online?
The choice to pursue a college degree online has often had conflicting outcomes for upcoming college students. With the introduction to online degree programs still looming recently in the past, more students continue to question how reliable these degree programs can actually be. This is a question that has plagued learners and researchers alike, since there are so few studies that research the comparison between traditional and online learning environments.
What the US DOE Says About Online Learning
The U.S. Department of Education has long been the providing element of information for educational practices throughout the United States. This government organization has provided detailed information about the reliability of online educational programs, especially when compared to traditional learning environments. In a meta-analysis (PDF report) conducted by this organization, it was found that students in an online environment were able to learn more efficiently than those in traditional learning environments.
The online learning environment can provide many benefits that are not present within traditional institutions.
Students that attend class online are not subject to the same time restraints and forced instruction that traditional learners may be subjected to. Online degree programs may allow students to attend classes on their own time, which makes for more preferable learning conditions for students enrolled.
In comparison to their traditional counterpart, online degree programs may also provide more independence in research and practice, since online learners are often given their own choice of research topics and practicum facilities in degree programs that may require them. The difference between these 2 types of degree programs may be within the methods used for instruction and the amount of liberty that students have with their studies.
Why Consider Earning an Online Degree?
There are many reasons that people choose to pursue their degree online. Have you considered the reasons why you might make the decision? Your personal needs and requirements can determine whether or not this type of degree program would be the right option for you.
Online degree programs can often encourage flexibility with your scheduling, which is a huge component for busy working adults with little free time for attending classes on campus.
2. Excellent for those with a family or current job
Online degree programs are an excellent choice for individuals that have obligations within their personal life that contribute to time restraints. This could include having a busy family life, a full-time job, or just difficult schedules that do not allow for scheduling classes. Some students even choose the online route just to have more free time to enjoy life. You do not have to be a busy working adult or have a large family to enjoy the benefits of online education.
3. Increased prevalence and quality of online programs
With technology changing the way that you do business and the way that you live everyday life, online degree programs are becoming more common now than ever before. Employers may be more accepting of online college degrees in this current age, due to the reliability of these programs and dedication of online learners. Online programs offer accredited options to interested students, which can further validate your degree when seeking better jobs or higher positions within your current field.
Accreditation for Online Colleges: National vs. Regional Accreditation
For students seeking a reliable online degree program, there are a few factors to consider. Perhaps the most important factor of all when choosing a school is the type of accreditation it holds and whether or not your chosen degree program is accredited.
When you are looking on a university’s website, the accreditation information can be overwhelming. Our team of educational experts has provided some information on regional and national accreditation below.
Regional accreditation is a long-standing accreditation methods used by colleges within different regions throughout the United States. The U.S. Department of Education currently lists 16 different regional accreditations in the country, including the Higher Learning Commission, the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities, and the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges.
Regional accreditation often means that students may have more difficulty when trying to transfer to colleges outside of their regional area. However, this is one of the oldest and most prestigious methods of accreditation for colleges across the United States, making it a reliable source of accreditation for colleges and universities within their areas.
National accreditation is seen more often in online educational programs than those in traditional environments. Colleges that hold this accreditation are not limited to any geographic region within the United States. The U.S. Department of Education officially recognizes 10 national accrediting agencies, including the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools, the Council on Occupational Education, and the Distance Education Accrediting Commission.
Nationally accredited colleges may be more liberal in their curricula, but offer distance students an advantage in terms of choosing a college for their degree program. Students that may consider transferring out to different universities may be limited to only schools that are also nationally-accredited in order to receive credit for any courses taken, however.
Program Specific Accreditation
In addition to the university’s accreditation, you should also take notice of your degree program’s separate accreditation. Most graduate-level degrees that can lead to licensure require some sort of accreditation for their programs. If you were to complete a degree program that did not carry the right type of accreditation, you could be refused licensure within your state. In order to give you more information on the different accreditation agencies, our team of educational experts has reviewed the top agencies for the most popular degree fields and listed them below for you to browse.
- CEPH: The Council on Education for Public Health is the most lucrative accreditation agency for degree programs focusing on public health. This organization provides a list of accredited schools on its websites for students that may be interested in pursuing them.
- CCNE: Students that are searching for nursing programs often look to the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education for reliable and reputable degree programs. This agency is nationally recognized as one of the leading accrediting agencies for programs that focus on nursing, making it a great resource for upcoming college students in this field.
- AACSB: The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business is an accrediting agency that focuses on business-related degree programs all over the country. The purpose of this organization is to continuously improve the curriculum found within business programs, so that professionals can have the best influence on society as a whole.
- NASPAA: Students that are interested in pursuing degree programs in Public Policy, Affairs, and Administration should familiarize themselves with the Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs, and Administration. This organization is responsible for accrediting degree programs in each of these areas. Students can view a list of accredited schools through this agency’s website.
- APA: Psychology is a hugely popular field for upcoming college students. If this is your field of choice, you should be aware that the American Psychological Association is the leading provider of accreditation for doctoral level programs within this field. This informative agency also provides helpful information for upcoming professionals or current affiliates on its website.
There are a number of program specific accreditation boards – this is by no means a comprehensive list, although we are working on one so come back soon!
Types of Online College Degrees
Online Bachelors Degrees
One of the most exciting and popular types of degree programs found in the online setting is at the bachelor’s level. Bachelor’s programs are introductory degree programs that can help upcoming professionals find expertise in a field of their choice. Across the United States, there are over 6,000 online bachelors programs available for students to enroll in.
The interest in online degree programs – especially at the bachelors level – is likely due to the rising costs of tuition and students’ need to begin or continue working while engaging in a degree program. These programs can provide flexibility that cannot be found at traditional institutions, making them a great option for students on the go.
Most online bachelors programs require that students attend courses online, with require discussions, assignments, and examinations held in the same setting. Most majors available for online bachelors programs also require students to choose from 2 or 3 minors, which is helpful in gaining a broad set of skills for future careers. The credit hour requirement for bachelors programs is currently around 120, making for around 4 years for completion for most students that are enrolled at a full-time rate.
Online Masters Degrees
Online masters degrees are a great way for students to find even more experience and knowledge within their chosen field. Masters level is a popular place for students to indulge in online education, since a lot of people have already nailed a great career and wish to remain employed while furthering their education. There are over 6,000 online masters programs in the U.S. for students to choose from, which makes this a great option for pursuing more in terms of an education and career.
Online masters programs often require students to have completed an accredited bachelors program prior to be admitted. The curriculum in these programs may consist of 1 to 3 years of specialized course work – which usually focuses specifically on a student’s chosen major. Enrolling in an online master’s program can mean more free time for work and personal lives for students that take part in them.
In the online classroom, students may be expected to turn in assignments by certain days each week. Class discussions and tests are also conducted in the online setting, with students communicating with each other and their instructor via convenient online discussion boards. With some majors, students may be required to engage in face-to-face experiences for licensure or completion of their degree program.
Online Doctorate Degrees
Students that want to go as far as they can with their degree often choose the online setting for many different reasons. With so many students graduating each year, the need for further education is more important now than ever before. Online doctorate degree programs can allow students to move closer to their dream of having the ultimate degree within their chosen specialty, without having to attend a school in person.
Research-oriented online doctorate programs often require students to take part in long-term research project that challenges them to independently conduct their own research and analysis of a topic in their field. Practice-based online doctorate programs may require students to engage in supervised work experiences or in-person practica as part of their degree requirements.
The completion time for online doctorate programs can be very different depending on your major. From masters level, some students can complete their online doctorate within about 3 years, while those coming from the bachelors level may take 4 to 5 years to complete their entire program. If you are interested in pursuing your doctorate degree online, there are over 600 programs to choose from.
Online Graduate Certificate Programs
Students that have completed their online masters degrees may feel the need to move into other plains of knowledge without having to go through an entire doctorate program. Online schools and institutions have found a way to fulfill this need for students, through the completion of online graduate certificate programs within their current field.
Depending on which field you are interested in, you might find that there are numerous availabilities to help expand your abilities within different areas in your subject area. Online graduate certificate programs often have specific purposes, which can be a great option for students that plan to pursue a specialized field within their career. These online programs are arranged similar to online bachelors and masters programs, with students taking classes, tests, and submitting assignments in an online setting.
The completion time for online graduate certificate programs can be variable, since some programs require more credit hour requirements than others. A large majority of these types of certificate programs can be completed within 1 to 1.5 years, making them a quick solution for students that are interested in pursuing greater endeavors.
Types of Online College Degrees, by Program Area
Business is one of the leading degree majors for students at the college level. This intriguing subject can be found at all degree levels, with various specializations such as Accounting, Management, and Advertising included. This type of degree program is best suited for individuals that have an interest in the growth of business, great communication skills, and skills in media and finance.
Programs that offer degrees in business are required to hold proper accreditation in order to be considered reliable in the field of education. The Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs is one of the leading accreditation agencies for business degrees and provides students with a guarantee of respectable and useful curricula within their programs.
Some of the course work that you may find in online business programs may include courses such as Personal Finance, Management Techniques, and Business Law. Diving deep into this curriculum could set you on track for careers as a Sales Professional, Adverting Specialist, or even a CEO of a top-ranking company.
Healthcare is one of the largest employers in the United States. In relation to this fact, online colleges and universities provide ample degree programs at the associate, bachelors, masters, and doctoral level that can help upcoming healthcare professionals gain the skills needed to be a helpful part of this field. One of the most popular fields in the healthcare realm is nursing, which can be found in numerous online degree programs for people at different educational levels.
Some of the common course work for healthcare students may include biology, anatomy, epidemiology, and management. These courses were implemented in an effort to educate healthcare professionals not only about the human body, but the many factors within the environment that can have an effect on it. Students that are interested in healthcare-related degree programs should be inquisitive in nature, have a passion for helping others, and have skills in communication.
In order to ensure that degree programs in healthcare are reliable and can lead to licensure, accreditation agencies such as the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing and the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education provide standards in which educational programs in nursing must abide by. Each subfield within healthcare has its own respective accreditation agency for educational programs, such as the Commission on Dental Accreditation for students that are entering into dental programs.
In this day and age, degree programs that are related to science, technology, engineering, and mathematics are more important that ever. Depending on what you are interested in within these subjects, you may find that there are multiple degrees available at all levels for you to choose from. Degree programs that focus on Computer Science, Astronomy, and Engineering are some of the most popular within this group, making them great options for students that want to pursue a career that can change the way that people engage with their environment in everyday life.
Course work common within these subjects may include those that focus on the structure and function of the human race, the constituents of the technologies that are use within society, and the creation and maintenance of structures found within the man-made environment. Depending on what major you choose, you may find a diverse set of courses set in place to teach you the most about your desired career.
Accreditation agencies such as the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology and the Applied and Natural Science Accreditation Commission work hard to ensure that degree programs within these fields are reliable and consistent for students that enroll in them.
Teaching degree program have long been popular with students that wish to make a difference in the lives of others. Upcoming students or recent high school graduates that are interested in pursuing teaching degrees may do so through associate, bachelors, masters, or even doctoral programs. Each educational level can provide its own benefits to learners, depending on what their goal is throughout their career.
In addition to flexibility with their level of degree, students may also choose many different paths for their teaching education. Students can choose from specific areas of study, such as english or math, or they may generalize their program by age group. The curriculum during teaching degree programs may focus on topics such as knowledge development, special needs education, and even behavior in the classroom.
The U.S. Department of Education provides a list of teaching-related accreditation agencies for those interested to browse. Among this list, agencies such as the Higher Learning Commission exist to help educational programs that focus on teaching to be of the best quality and standard.
Bachelor of Arts in Psychology, Master of Mental Health Counseling, and the Online MA in Counseling.
One of the most widely known subjects for college degree programs is psychology. Students often pursue psychology degrees at all degree levels, with the most popular level being masters. Since licensure is required for individuals to become practicing psychologists, the masters level is most popular due to it being the minimum degree requirement. Those interested in research or development in the field sometimes move forward to Ph.D. programs in order to gain the most possible experience.
The curriculum for psychology programs may include courses that look further into the human brain and its functions. However, students may also take courses that investigate human behavior, human interaction with the environment, and abnormal findings in psychology. This field calls upon individuals that have an interest in helping others, as well as those that want to know more about how humans develop, think, and act out their thoughts.
The top accreditation board for this degree field is the American Psychological Association. The APA is responsible for ensuring that degree programs in psychology are reliable, up to date with the latest trends, and follow all recommendations set for by the APA. Students that are interested in pursuing psychology-related degrees should ensure that their program is accredited by the APA prior to enrolling.
gavel Public Administration
Public administration is a field that touches on many different aspects of business, government, and social processes. Students that wish to pursue a degree within the field of public administration can do so through associates, bachelors, masters, or doctoral programs. Each level provides its own benefit to the field as a whole, so students are encouraged to research what each level provides for upcoming learners.
While in degree programs that focus on public administration, students can learn more about how public organizations function from an inside perspective, the financial processes that are involved with creating a successful operation, and the leadership skills that are needed to properly manage public facilities. Students that are interested in becoming finance managers, personnel leaders, or program analysts are a great fit for this field.
In terms of providing quality educational programs, the Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs, and Administration takes the lead for the most widely-recognized accreditation agency within this field. Educational programs that contain the NASPAA logo are some of the most reliable available, making them great options for students that are entering into them.
Types of Online College Degrees, by Popular Program
Top Online Bachelors Programs
Online Bachelor’s in Psychology
The Online Bachelor’s in Psychology is one of the most desired degree programs for students that want to pursue their degree online. Bachelor’s programs in psychology can be found in many forms, with many offering specializations to accompany the general bachelor degree. Upcoming students that are considering this program should have an investigative mindset and be willing to engage in research as part of their degree requirements.
These programs may include courses such as General Psychology, Abnormal Psychology, Social Psychology, and Research Methods for Psychology. Each of these courses can provide important components that can lead students into even higher degree programs in their future. Since bachelor’s programs in this field provide a lot of generalized information, students can often benefit from choosing a specialization that relates to their career of choice.
The American Psychological Association does not currently accredit bachelor’s or master’s programs, so this degree program should hold the accreditation of the university that you choose to take it at. Completing the online Bachelor’s in Psychology can lead to entry-level careers in case management, social services, psychological assistant, or even research.
Online RN to BSN
The online RN to BSN programs available at universities all over the country have been a growing desire for nurses that received their RN distinction prior to the bachelor’s level requirement. Since this implementation, nurses have been advancing their degree through transitional programs designed especially for them. The entire purpose of these programs is to advance an associate’s level degree to bachelor’s level within 1 to 2 years.
The curriculum included within the RN to BSN program may consist of courses such as Community Health Nursing, Aging and Health, and Leadership in Nursing Practice. The courses within this program can help get associate-level nurses up to speed in the latest developments in the field of nursing, without requirement 4 extra years of education.
One of the leading accreditation agencies for RN to BSN degree programs is the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education. This agency reviews and accredits educational programs that provide the BSN to learners, in an effort to ensure quality and reliability within the subject area. Graduates of this program may be able to pursue higher-tier or even specialty fields in nursing.
Top Online Masters Degrees
Students that are interested in taking on complex business decisions, leading a team of business professionals, or those interested in specialty fields of business such as accounting or finance can take part in popular MBA programs in an online setting. These online educational programs are a great way for upcoming professionals to learn the most about their field prior to taking on upper-tier positions on the business ladder.
The curriculum present within business programs are relevant to the specialty that students may choose during enrollment. As stated above, there are a variety of different specializations to choose from, each leading to careers in areas such as corporate management, advertising, non-profit leadership, and accounting. Depending on what interests you, there may be programs to match.
In order to online MBA programs to provide you with a reliable and relevant curriculum, accreditation agencies are employed to ensure that the program meets certain expectations. For business programs, the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business is the leading source of accreditation. If you are interested in taking part in this popular masters-level program, there are accredited programs all over the country that can meet your needs.
Online Masters in Accounting
Online Masters in Accounting programs are hugely popular for upcoming business professionals. This could be due in part to the strong need for experienced accountants in the planning and maintenance of big-name organizations all over the country. Students flock to this area of business in order to play a role in one of the most important components of everyday business, which is finance.
The masters program in this subject area may consist of advanced topics in accounting, such as tax accounting, cost accounting, and ethics. Students that engage in these courses can learn more about the forms, techniques, and laws that are associated with this line of work. People that are interested in mathematics and business are a great fit for this field.
Students that wish to find the best quality Masters in Accounting program should begin by choosing those that have received accreditation from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business. This organization is tasked with ensuring degree programs in accounting have all of the necessary components and topics required.
Online Master of Public Health
More and more students are finding online Master of Public Health programs the right option for a successful future. These online degree programs can help students dive further into the realm of public health organizations, which can lead to careers within healthcare, business, and even with the national government. Students that have an interest in science, biology, and healthcare in general would be a great fit for this field.
There are numerous courses that students can take during a MPH program. Depending on their specialty, students can take courses such as Epidemiology, Biostatistics, and Public Health Management. Each course offered throughout these programs can help to sharpen a student’s abilities within their concentration. The online domain may also allow students to engage in individual research projects that lead to more advancement within their field of study.
The Council on Education for Public Health is a great resource for students that are looking for reputable MPH programs within their area. Accreditation agencies such as this one can help to filter out schools that offer less-than quality educational programs for students searching for the right fit. Reliable MPH programs can be found all over the country.
Masters in Counseling Online
Counseling is a popular field for upcoming masters-level students. Degree programs that offer master’s-level counseling degrees can be found at universities all over the United States. The outcome of achieving this degree for most students is becoming a licensed marriage and family counselor, mental health counselor, or even a clinical counselor. In addition to completing this degree programs, students may also be required to take part in a supervised work experience during or after course work.
The courses that students may take throughout this degree program can include those that focus on psychology and development. Students may also see courses that are related to the ethics and practice of one-on-one and group counseling. These degree programs implement independent study and projects to help students gain more independence in their relevant skills.
If you are interested in pursuing a Masters in Counseling, you should choose a degree program that is accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs. This organizations is the leading accrediting agency for counseling degree programs and can ensure that your chosen programs meets all standards for great quality education.
Online Masters in School Counseling
One important sub-field of counseling that draws in large numbers of new applicants each year is school counseling. Online Masters in School Counseling programs are some of the most widespread in the counseling realm. This is a great degree program for upcoming professionals that enjoy making a difference in the lives of youth or for those that are in the field of education and want to provide more of a profound influence to the children they teach. Degree programs that focus on school counseling are popular in big-name universities across the country.
The educational components of this degree program can include courses that can educate students about the wide variety of needs of children at school age. This can include courses that talk about vocational needs for teens, family safety for younger students, and collegiate planning. Counseling techniques and ethics may also be covered in depth throughout this degree program.
In order to get the best possible education in school counseling, students must choose a degree program with high standards and a good reputation. Since school counseling requires licensure, those that enroll in these programs must be aware of their program’s accreditation status. The Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs is the top agency for this certification. Most universities list their accreditation status on their website for you to review.
Online Masters in Mental Health Counseling
Mental health counseling is a widely known sub-field of counseling that is popular with upcoming college students. The reach of this degree program can go beyond the norm in terms of daily practice, since there are so many areas that deal in mental health. Graduates of this program can move forward to become licensed through a supervised internship, and pursue careers in psychiatric facilities, private practice, hospitals, or even schools.
The courses that may be seen while in this degree program can include those such as Abnormal Psychology, Clinical Assessments for Mental Health, and Individual Counseling Techniques. Each of these courses can provide students with skills that can increase their awareness of different mental health disorders and help them to provide adequate counseling to those in need.
The leading accreditation agency for online Masters in Mental Health Counseling programs is the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs. A university that has the seal on their masters programs is likely one that provides ample information and experience that can help to increase your efficiency in the field.
Online Master of Social Work
The online Master of Social Work is frequently chosen by upcoming graduate students. This degree programs contains components of social work that are relevant to many different professional fields in society. People that have an inert desire to help others are a great fit for this field and can potentially pursue careers in Human Services, Education, and even the justice system. Social work has many different sub-fields for graduates to choose from after completing their degree program.
While in this program, students may take courses that are directly related to working with individuals in the field. They may also take courses that can help increase their knowledge of the different social services and provisions available, such as welfare, family assistance, and foster care. Students that are interested in becoming social workers should have a solid foundation of knowledge in social law, which is another main topic that may be covered throughout a student’s experience.
The Council on Social Work Education accredits online Master of Social Work programs all over the country. This organization has high standards in which universities and educational systems must comply with in order to remain accredited. As you are looking for a fitting degree program, you should consider accreditation status to be high on your list of amenities.
Masters in Engineering Online
With the rise in interest in the field of engineering, more people are finding it necessary to move forward to master’s-level education to help support advancement in their career. The online Masters in Engineering is a growing and popular field that can help increase a person’s skill in their specialized area, provide management techniques that are relevant to leadership, and potentially lead to higher opportunities in their current career.
Depending on the type of specialization you choose, you might find that the curriculum changes incredibly. Students can choose specializations such as Civil Engineering, Bioengineering, Aerospace Engineering, and Mechanical Engineering. The courses that can be taken may include Bioinstrumentation, Computer Genomics, and Cooperative Engineering.
Degree programs that offer Masters in Engineering must have accreditation from the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology in order to be considered reliable and relevant to professionals in this field. Accreditation can help to filter out schools that offer less-than optimal experiences for students and potentially set you up for more prestigious positions while working in the field.
Masters in Education / Master of Arts in Teaching Online
Teaching degree programs have almost always been a popular choice for upcoming college students. The implementation of online Masters in Education or online Master of Arts in Teaching may have only increased popularity for this extremely important field. Students that enroll in and complete these degree programs may have the option of pursuing broader positions in the field of teaching or even move forward to positions that take part in educational research.
Students in this program may have the opportunity to learn more about how children and young adults learn. Courses in this program may include those that focus on teaching strategies and techniques that are relevant to each age group, and the methods for implementing a curriculum in an educational setting. Some of the courses in this program may also focus on leadership, since some master’s earners go on to take higher ranking positions after graduation.
One of the most popular accrediting agencies for educational degree programs is the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation. This organization serves universities that are seeking recognition and acknowledgment of their high quality degree programs. Students that choose degree programs that are accredited by this agency can rest assured they are receiving a degree that meets high standards.
Online Masters in Psychology
The online Masters in Psychology is a well-known degree choice that numerous students choose each year. This program can take students in many different paths, depending on their desires for their professional future. Graduates of this program can move on to become licensed psychologists, research professionals, or even applied therapeutic professionals. This degree program can also lead to leadership opportunities within social service fields or business.
Course work that is included in the online Masters in Psychology may touch on the different aspects of psychology, such as Neurology, Growth and Development, and Abnormal Disorders and Disabilities. These courses can help expand a student’s knowledge of the human mind, which can lead to more growth within their current field or entry into a whole new area in his or her professional life.
The largest organization for psychology degrees is the American Psychological Association. However, this agency does not currently accredit Masters in Psychology degrees. The Masters in Psychology and Counseling Accreditation Council is a growing agency that accredits masters-level programs at universities in the U.S. Considering accreditation can assist you in finding a degree that can lead to licensure within your future.
Online Master of Public Administration
Students that are interested in pursuing a career in the public domain often want to have the best degree to accommodate their needs. The online Master of Public Administration is a popular choice for students that have undergraduate degrees in this field, or for those that have a prior degree in the field of business. After completing this degree program, some students have moved forward into leadership positions in public and non-profit agencies, pursued specialty positions in healthcare, and even worked for the government.
Public Administration is another field that can have many different specializations to choose from. Public Policy, Emergency Management, and Healthcare are just a few options for students interested in this major. The course work included in this degree program may dive into some of the most important components of this field, such as federal laws and regulation, personnel management, and emergency preparedness. These programs can be completed in around 2 years for most students.
As you search for the right MPA program, there are important things you may need to consider. The online setting is a great place to pursue a career, but you want to be sure that you are choosing a reliable degree program along the way. The leading accreditation agency for MPA program is the Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs, and Administration. Be sure to locate the accreditation of your chosen program prior to enrolling.
Top Online Doctorate Degrees
Online Doctor of Social Work
Students that are interested in becoming more affluent with the field of social work may desire a degree advancement to help spark growth within their career. The most popular degree option for students at this level is the online Doctor of Social Work degree. This degree program was designed for current social workers that want to indulge in the research-oriented aspects of their field and possible pursue careers in leadership and management in social services.
Most doctoral-level programs in social work contain similar elements regardless of which college you attend. While in this program, students may be required to engage in individual research projects, in-person practicums, and possible even supervised work experiences. The purpose of this degree program is to introduce students to some of the underlying factors in social work and help to encourage further learning and development within the field.
As with lower degree programs, the Council on Social Work Education is the agency to look for when seeking reputable degree programs. At the doctoral level, you want to ensure that you are receiving the recommended educational tools and curriculum needed to become an advanced professional within your field. Most students may find that choosing an accredited program can ease worry about their program’s reliability.
Online Doctor of Nursing (DNP)
One of the largest fields of choice within the United States is the field of nursing. With that being said, it is no surprise the the online Doctor of Nursing degree program is among the most popular for college students. For nurses that have experience in the field and complete the online DNP, there could be many different opportunities for career advancement. This degree can result in the acquisition of job titles such as Head Nurse, Clinical Nursing Specialist, or even Nurse Executive.
The curriculum of this degree program may differ than that of the BSN or MSN. At this level, students may learn more about the applied management needs of nursing professionals, the business-oriented aspects of healthcare, and the standard operation of healthcare facilities and hospitals. Students that take part in this degree program may have to complete an individual research project or take part in a practicum throughout their experience.
There are 2 major accreditation agencies in operation for online DNP programs throughout the U.S. The Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing and the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education are both agencies that can provide you with assurance on your degree program’s reliability. If you are seeking a reliable online DNP program, you should check these agencies for programs in your area.
Online Doctor of Psychology
Psychology is an incredibly research-oriented field that can contribute monumental findings to the field of mental health. Students that want to pursue the highest possible degree in psychology often look at the doctorate level for programs that fit their individual needs. Graduates at the doctoral level are often those that are interested in contributing to the growth of psychology, through research and development. However, many leadership positions may also call upon doctorate learners for their expertise.
While in an online Doctor of Psychology program, students may engage in in-depth research within variable aspects of psychology. Students may choose their own area of study, such as Clinical Psychology or School Psychology. Each of these fields has a different curriculum that includes courses relevant to the specialization. Course work may include a look into the research practices required within each field. Students may also be required to engage in a practicum or internship as part of their degree program.
The American Psychological Association is the top resource for anyone interested in pursuing a career in psychology. This organization currently accredits doctoral-level programs in clinical, counseling, and school psychology. If you are thinking of pursuing an online Doctor of Psychology degree and wish to become licensed, you should ensure that your school has received proper accreditation from the APA. The Council on Accreditation is also an accreditation agency for programs in psychology other than those in clinical, counseling, or school psychology.
Online Doctor of Counseling
The online Doctor of Counseling is a popular choice for current counseling professionals that desire a change in setting within their career. People often look to this degree program to gain more experience in the leadership perspective, which can help them to pursue high-level positions in their current setting. The result of this degree program could possibly be more lucrative counseling positions or even management positions within counseling agencies and mental health facilities across the country.
A lot of the curriculum in the online Doctor of Counseling programs focuses on leading teams of counselors to career success. There are many laws and regulations within the field of counseling, making these topics increasingly important for these degree programs. Students that enroll in these online programs may also need to take part in supervised work experiences and individual research projects as part of their degree requirements.
The Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs can provide students with a list of accredited schools that offer the online Doctor of Counseling program. Accreditation is a leading source of reliability for educational programs, since their curriculum is regularly reviewed as part of the accreditation process. If you might be interested in pursuing this degree in the future, please take this into consideration when choosing your school.