Online Degrees

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Saturday, March 08, 2008

Advancing Your Career with an Online Graduate Degree

There are multiple ways to get ahead in your career field. Many professionals choose to earn a graduate degree online to further their income potential. With today's technology and use of the internet, earning a graduate degree may not be as difficult as you may have thought. If you hold Bachelor's degree already, an advanced degree is easier than ever to achieve with the many options available to you. With online graduate degree programs, students are easily obtaining their MBA, MS, M.Ed and MA degrees without having to sacrifice precious time and resources away from work and family.

Often time, students enter the workforce after obtaining their undergraduate degrees, leaving little time for graduate studies. Let's face it-after working hard all day, it is difficult to devote time and energy to writing a thesis or reading a 600-page advanced level textbook.

As if these hurdles weren't difficult enough, graduate programs have always been notoriously time-consuming, involving extensive time in the library, researching, writing and consulting with faculty mentors regarding research proposals and projects.

Many graduate programs from traditional universities are highly competitive and involve a full-time commitment, making it difficult for nontraditional students with full-time jobs to earn an advanced degree in that setting. If a student has family obligations as well-which is often the case-obtaining a graduate degree could seem to be an impossible dream. In addition, traditional university graduate programs are more costly than undergraduate programs, making the commitment of earning an advanced degree not only time consuming, but costly as well.

Yet, it is becoming a growing trend for companies to require MBA degrees for many upper-level positions, forcing employees to either continue their education or accept the fact that they have hit the "ceiling" within their company as far as their salary and position is concerned. Even jobs that do not require an advanced degree often offer a higher salary for the same position if the employee has a graduate degree, making going back to school an attractive prospect, despite the inconvenience of it.

For these reasons and more, online graduate degree programs are increasing in popularity as a convenient, inexpensive way to earn an advanced degree. Working adults are finding that they can earn their graduate degree at their own pace, and without having to sacrifice their full-time jobs and time with their family. Most of the online degree programs offer flexible payment plans as well, allowing students convenient options of paying in addition to convenient options for studying. Students of online degree programs can receive the same individualized attention given to students at traditional universities. Professors at online programs are available by phone or email, and incorporate new technology in the learning process to make a student's experience as educational as possible.

Online graduate degrees aren't limited to Masters programs-some colleges also offer Doctorates in limited fields. While these programs aren't as common as Master's programs, they are available, and a viable option for students wishing to earn a Ph.D. without enrolling in a traditional university.

Some online Master's degree and Doctoral programs are run in conjunction with traditional universities, allowing students to complete their graduate work in a combination of online and on-site studies.

If you are a nontraditional student wishing to advance your career to the next level, online graduate programs might be the best option for you. Their convenience and cost-effective approach can mean the difference between attaining your graduate degree and only dreaming about it.

by Tonya Thompson - a directory of accredited online colleges, universities and campus based institutions nationwide.

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