Online degrees are here to change the world. If you are thinking about changing careers, especially into a demanding role like nursing that not only requires a degree as a prerequisite but also that you pass a state exam, then an online degree is just what you need.
If you aren’t sure what your options are, don’t worry. This short guide will go over everything you need to know about online degrees, including how to choose the best one for you.
History of online degrees
In the past, online degrees were clunky, difficult to use, and didn’t convey information well enough to be worth the hassle. This meant that many professionals simply didn’t commit to their further education goals because relocating for school becomes less and less of an option the older you get. You may have a family or are simply happy with where you are after spending years building a life there. Thankfully, online degrees have changed for the better.
The pandemic meant that all students had to be taught online suddenly, and with that need came massive investments and improvements to the online degree framework.
Online degree options
Today there are many great degree options to suit all types of learners.
If you need to continue to work or require flexibility to, for example, raise your young kids, then a part-time online degree can be the perfect option. It does take longer to graduate from a part-time program than other options, but if you have no other option, it is just what you need to see your goals come to life finally.
Full-time degrees take around one to four years to complete (depending on the program) and are meant to be committed to in a full-time capacity. They are great for those that are either just getting their first degree or going back to finish their degree.
If you already have a degree, always see if you can accelerate your second one. This is a particularly popular choice for second-career nurses since many accelerated BSN programs, like this second degree in nursing from UIndy, that lets you graduate in just over two years. Accelerating your degree is the best way to save money, put your previous education to good use, and kickstart a new career path.
Part-time, full-time, and accelerated degrees can all be hybrid. You’ll usually see these hybrid options when the role you are preparing for has clinical placement requirements. Nurses, for example, need to complete a clinical placement to graduate.
Hybrid options are great since they add in the hands-on training you need without requiring you to move permanently to do them. Any on-campus components are a week or two at most, so you can book a rental for that short period and afterward go home.
Choosing the best degree option for you
Consider your personal responsibilities, budget, and your options. If you want to start a new career path, then taking a degree full-time is a great way to go, especially if you can accelerate it. If, on the other hand, you need to work to keep paying bills, part-time is a great choice. Ultimately, it doesn’t matter how long it takes you to complete your degree, so long as you progress and the option you pick suits your needs.