Considering getting your degree online? You are certainly not alone. Many people from all stages of life are choosing to pursue their education through online degree programs. In fact, the field of online education is growing extremely fast, which is great news for those looking for a way to get the education they need by means of a flexible online programHowever, as with any booming industry, there are those who are trying to take advantage of the situation by offering sub-par, over priced, or even outright fraudulent degree programs. Additionally, even if the degree program is 100% legit, you still need to consider whether or not getting your degree online is the proper course of action for you. These five questions should help guide you on your way to having a pleasant and productive online education experience.Question 1: Is My Online Degree Program Legit? This is the number one scam to watch out for when it comes to getting your education online. So called “degree mills” will claim to offer you a college degree without requiring very much work out of you. They will pitch these degrees using terms like “life experience degree programs,” which claim to take your previous experience into account, and offer you a “degree” based on them.As nice as this might sound to some, its all a fraud. You can’t get a legit degree without putting some time into accredited coursework, period. Any degree you get from these programs will be nothing but an expensive piece of paper.To understand what these diploma mills are doing, lets talk a bit about the concept of accreditation. To be considered a real degree program, an online course must be officially accredited by one of several accreditation boards. These boards look at the course material, and how its being taught, and determine whether or not it provides sufficient background in the material to warrant being counted as a legitimate degree program. If it doesn’t meet these standards, the program isn’t accredited, and thus employers and others can have no confidence in the quality of the degree. Since degree mills, in general, offer no actual education, they are not accredited, and therefore are simply scams.The good news is that it is easy to check to see if a program is accredited or not. Simply search the U.S. Department of Education site for your degree program. If its legit, it will be on the list, with details about the accreditation. If its not on the list, run, don’t walk away. Make sure you do at least this much homework before enrolling in any online degree program. A degree mill may have promising claims, but it will never, ever be worth it in the end.Question 2: Is My Online Degree Program Well Thought of by Employers?This is a question many have about online degrees. What do employers really think about online education? It seems that the simple answer is that while there is definitely still some skepticism, perceptions are improving all around.Let’s talk about the skepticism first. According to this article from the New York Times, most employers still prefer traditional, campus based degree programs to online programs. Given the amount of fraud in the online degree space, as well as the relative newness of online programs in general, this is understandable.However, it appears these negative impressions are changing as time goes on. This report from the Sloan Consortium suggests that those who view online education as just as valuable as face to face education are growing. I expect that as the field of distance education continues to grow, so will positive expectations. This is great news.Question 3: Is My Online College Offering A Quality Program?Not all legit, accredited online schools are created equal. Quality of online programs can vary for many reasons, ranging from quality of the course material, course organization, easy of use of the website, and many more. Unfortunately, there isn’t a simple quick and easy resource to turn to to get all this information. However, there are a few things you can investigate to gauge the quality of an online degree program.First of all, be sure to do a search and see if you can turn up some basic articles about a particular school. Try to find real student experiences, and not just sites trying to sell. Forums and such are good places to find genuine student reviews. See if people are getting a good education and good customer service from the college.Also, many online programs offer “tours” of their learning environment. Exploring this is a good idea, because you will be spending a lot of time navigating their interface when participating in the class. If you find the site confusing, you should probably look elsewhere.Additionally, if you’re trying to get work with a specific employer, or get skills for a certain job, don’t be afraid to call up the company and ask them what programs they recommend. They might have had some good luck with certain programs, and will be able to point you in the right direction.Question 4: Is My Online College Competitively Priced?This is probably one of these easiest points to address, but an important one still. You don’t want to pay more than you have to to get your degree, so be sure to compare prices once you’ve picked out the programs that work for you. Tuition rates should be clearly posted in the college’s information packet, and if they are not, I would think twice about enrolling. Take the time to compare prices, and you will be much happier.Question 5: Is My Online Degree Program Relevant to My Goals?This is a very important point. After all, why should you put in all this time and effort if you’re not accomplishing what you really want? You need to make sure that your degree program of choice is helping you achieve your goals rather than simply wasting your time and money.One of the best ways of checking the relevancy of a degree program is to request information from the school about the course list. When you look at the course list for a given program, the individual courses should seem relevant and interesting to you. If they aren’t, you should consider looking elsewhere.However, if most of the courses sound interesting and relevant to your goals, then by all means consider pressing forward and enrolling. You can achieve a lot through higher education, and doing it online can help make it possible for those on tight schedules.Wrap UpI hope you will take the time to carefully consider each of these questions before enrolling in any sort of online degree program. Though it may seem tedious at some points, having good, solid answers to each of these questions that you can really feel confident about will pay off tremendously when it comes to making the right choice for continuing your education on the Internet. Good luck with your search, and keep working towards those goals!
Financing College Education
College education is the main investment in human resource and therefore plays a major role in the development of a country. The US government plays a major role in ensuring that Higher Education is affordable and easily accessible to the larger mass through different loans and scholarships. Nevertheless, there are some factors that have contributed to the unfortunate reduction of federal aid. According to a Study by the Joint Economic Committee, tuition fee in High Education Institutions has doubled in less than 20 years and seems to increase by the day. The study also showed that in 1995 High education was far much cheaper at a price of US$ 6000 including accommodation for public institutions. College financing is therefore a nightmare for the average parent.
In the last 10 years, federal aid has increased by a margin of 65% margin but this has not helped in making education affordable. The cost of student loans is regularly increasing and this directly affects its availability. The upper and middle income earners are getting better deals, while the poor have to seek alternative Financing options. Some look out for Grants while others seek other scholarship chances for their education. Federal aid has gone down by 36% and this has left little if any hope for the poor students.
Student loans are not perfect enough to seal the gap for the middle income earners as well. The tuition fees have rapidly increased in the last 10 years by a 45% margin, which in turn affects the benefits of the student loans. In general this system depends on student debts not considering the less fortunate families. Due to these factors, the gap between middle income earners and the poor who attend college has significantly increased. The fear of getting into debt has made many poor families avoid the loans altogether and hence never attend college. So what is the way forward and what should parents do in order to ensure they are better prepared to see their children through college?
Saving for College
Parents are supposed to contribute a certain percentage towards college education and while this is the case, there is a tendency of not saving. Whether your child wants to get a 2 year associate degree or a 4 year bachelor degree, planning in advance is important. There are several things you need to consider before you start saving and this includes the college the child is going to attend, the course they will be pursuing and the charges for the same.
In this regard, community colleges are least expensive. They offer courses that range from $ 300 to $ 600. State colleges on the other hand are known to vary in cost though the average cost per course can be high or lower than $ 1000. Private universities are the most expensive and while this is the case costs vary from one school to another. Regardless of the costs, one thing you have to note is that college education is not cheap and you need to prepare in advance for the challenges that lie ahead.
The dangers of not saving for college
There are several dangers posed by the lack of an early saving plan for your child’s college education. Top on the list is the fact that you deny your child the opportunity to pursue college education. As mentioned earlier, education forms the backbone human resource and failing to educate your child only places them at a disadvantage in the job industry. In the future, it is expected that college education costs are going to rise higher and lack of preparation only poses a serious threat towards continued education. The future is also unpredictable and preparing early is the only way to ensure you are forearmed and your child is set for college.
Foreign Education and the Costs
Foreign education has been an alternative for some parents who have had it rough while trying to get their children an education. With the high increase in education costs in some of the leading cheaper foreign education destinations such as Asia and the Middle East, it is even more difficult for parents to meet the cost. This has led to an increase in the number of students searching for alternative funding such as scholarships and part time jobs. Yet, this has done little to alleviate the situation and make it easier for parents. Overseas education has roughly fifty scholarships and some countries do not allow students to work and study at the same time. Those who manage to get funding get lesser amounts and this is because of the recovery from the Global meltdown. It is for all these reasons that parents need to look for alternative financing options for their kids’ college education such as independent scholarships. For more information refer to financingcollegeedu.com
Mascots on College and University CampusesDating back to the 1800′s the use of mascots in colleges and universities has helped to foster pride and raise the spirit of fans. At the earliest incarnation, mascots used on college and university campuses for sports were largely live animals. This has become a tradition and some campuses still practice this even today. Mascots for hundreds perhaps thousands of years have been viewed as symbols of luck. This is why some college and universities will still bring out a live animal onto the field as a mascot to get the crowd involved. Animals such as: lions, tigers, buffaloes, and bulldogs have been used as live mascots to name a few. The Colorado Buffaloes will often bring a buffalo out onto their home field during half-time. Boosters at most campuses supply the necessary funds for the feeding and upkeep of live mascots.Use of Live Mascots a Controversy for Colleges and UniversitiesHowever, the use of live animals as mascots on college and university campuses has been fraught with controversy. People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has had much to say about the use of animals as mascots over the years. Many people in the group feel that it is unethical and perhaps unhealthy to keep animals in captivity for the sole purpose of being a mascot. Their concern arises amid some animal mascots dying such as a tiger from renal failure. PETA argues that the cages that the animals are kept in are barely large enough to allow for free movement. Also, sometimes temperatures can be extreme and having thousands of fans in one place near the animal can cause it distress. Rival schools will at times steal the mascot of other schools. This is an ongoing controversy that hasn’t come to a clean end. Some colleges and universities view using live animal mascots as a long standing tradition that is harmless. Animal rights activists feel it is inhumane and unethical and needs to end.Many Mascots Resemble Those in Professional SportsSeveral colleges and universities don’t use live mascots. Their mascots are very much like the ones seen at professional football, soccer, and basketball games. Someone wears a suit and becomes the personality for the team. A lot of intense training can go into becoming a mascot for a college or university. The person has to have a high level of energy, be enthusiastic and engaging, be able to give the mascot “personality,” and adopt gestures befitting a mascot. Many will learn dances, mime, perform skits, waves flags with the crowds, or hold up signs to get the crowd involved. It is quite the acting job and demands that the person performing as the mascot maintain consistent, upbeat, and positive behavior. It’s not only important for the mascot to interact with other college students. A mascot needs to be accessible to all college and university fans such as alumni, community, faculty, and children of fans.College and University Mascots aren’t Always StereotypicalThe use of mascots in colleges and universities do not always fall along stereotypical lines. Mascots are often patterned for characteristics of the school or the students attending the schools. The boll weevil has been used in college sports as the mascot for The University of Arkansas at Monticello. Some would argue that it doesn’t look like a formidable foe. Yet, it is one of the biggest detriments to cotton crops in the U.S.The Fighting Okra is the mascot representing Delta State. Fans of the school’s team were opposed to using the vegetable because they didn’t feel it portrayed the right image. Some argued that it was mean, green, and indigenous to the Southern region of America. Given this reasoning the mascot name has stuck.The University of Hawaii-Hilo has taken a different approach with their mascot. They have emulated the Vulcans of Star Trek fan and made them their mascot. Their reasoning is due to the large amount of volcanic activity through the islands, the name fits perfectly.