How to choose the best online degree program for you?

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How to choose the best online degree program for you?


Find out which careers suits you

If you are planning to start online education, don’t make your decision without doing your research. First brainstorm about why you wish to go for a particular program. Will it help you have your dream career?  Are you going for a career because of its good job prospects or you would really love to work in that field? You can also take a career test to find out the field that suits you best. Once you have decided about a career that suits you in multiple ways, selecting a related degree program will become a lot easier.

Look for accredited online programs

After having a made an informed decision about your career, the next step is to look for accredited online programs. Accreditation is crucial when acquiring quality education. With accreditation, you can be confident about the quality of education and methods of instruction. Besides employers prefer graduates from accredited programs, as they usually link quality of education to a successful and prosperous career. Once you have a list of accredited online programs, shortlist the programs further by going through different curriculums, and find out which curriculum suits you best.

Find out about your instructors

When you have narrowed down your list of programs by looking for the relevant curriculum, you can search about the qualifications of your instructors. Find out if they are trained and experienced enough to provide effective online education. Since the learning resources and methods used in online education are different, it is always preferable to look for instructors who have experience in online education.

Get feedback from students

Word-of-mouth or feedback from students taking online classes should not be ignored or underestimated. The students presently studying in the online programs can give you detailed information and very specific feedback. Students will give you a better idea about feedback of different programs, overall repute of the school, and the worth of its degree in the job market.


Affordability is also a factor that you cannot overlook. Make sure that the list of online programs you are considering are also cost effective and affordable. Once you have shortlisted a handful of quality online programs, it will be easier for you to find out about their costs. Although cost is not the only factor you need to consider, it can help you finalize your decision.

Go for a trial course

Before you decide to enroll in a program, it’s good that you take some trial lessons to see if it’s working for you. Trial lessons can give you an idea about how online programs work, and if the learning resources are effective for you. You can reduce your risk by taking trial lessons and finding out about online programs before committing.

Enroll in a program and plan appropriately

The final step is to enroll yourself in online program. However, the story doesn’t end here. In fact to be fully successful in your online program, you will need to plan, focus, and be consistent. Once you have planned how you will go about it, stay consistent in your efforts, and learn with full focus. If you are disciplined and determined, there is a pretty good chance of you succeeding.

Best mobile apps for online students you haven’t heard of

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Best mobile apps for online students you haven’t heard of

There are things that you can live without but you can’t deny that they make your life a lot easier. Mobile apps can become an indispensable part of your student life. If you want to make online learning fun and organized, try these wonderful apps:


Why look for a calculator or do long calculations on a page to find out your GPA? Don’t sweat the small stuff and go for GPA-mE! This app makes calculating GPA a lot easier. Just input all the details and you have your result right there. It also helps you organize your grades while you continue to take on more courses.


CourseSmart can turn out to be your favorite e-textbook reader on phone. Now, you don’t need to own a Kindle or an I Pad to read your e-textbooks. This app is not just any e-textbook reader. It helps you search words and phrases in the book, take notes, and find study tools. No more backpacks, Kindles, or iPads needed now.


Flashcards are great to make your study session interesting and efficient. But it’s quite a hassle to make flashcards on paper, and it’s not environmentally friendly as well. Now you have an app that not only makes flashcards on your phone but also estimates your progress with study statistics. Get this app to become one smart student and make your parents proud.

Wolfram Alpha

Think of this app as an elder and wiser brother of Google. It helps you search almost anything and gives very precise and comprehensive information. This handy app is what you need if search engines baffle you and you seem to get lost while on the first page. If you ask on Wolfram Alpha “What is the salary of nurses?” it will give you a correct number instantly and also give you the related sources.


Do you often come across great sources while conducting your research but never seem to know where they go? Try InstaPaper. It lets you save sources, so that you can access them anytime and anywhere. Now your research efforts will translate into grades and not in a waste of time.


Would you like to be more organized? Who wouldn’t. If you can’t recall a deadline or the assignment you had to submit this week, Astrid comes to your aid. With to-do lists, reminders, and organized collaboration, it is one useful app.  Just keep updating your Astrid and you won’t need a special effort to stay organized.


Do you learn new things easily when there’s a video available? Then, Howcast is just right for you. Learn here what interests you because this app gives you a treasure chest of detailed step-by-step instructional videos. You can find information on many educational topics, meaning students will likely find some interesting information here.

What’s your favorite app

You can use the best out of these apps to gain knowledge on the go through your mobile devices. Do let us know if you have any more apps that you think can help you for your online education.

Five Reasons why higher education is good for you

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Five Reasons why higher education is good for you

A recent report of the College Board, “Education Pays, 2013: The benefits of higher education for individuals and society,” makes it clear that higher education can do wonders for both individuals and the society in general. Findings from this study include some obvious benefits like employment and earning potential. It also states that those who graduate from college lead much healthier and prosperous lives.


With a college education, your chances of pursuing a challenging career increases. A college degree can add to job security and result in salary increments. Students might not be able to earn much during college and as a result debt may accumulate. But in the long run, college education can offer a number of monetary benefits. After graduation, individuals have their entire lives to earn till they retire.

A simple High School diploma might not cut it

If you are looking to switch jobs, your high school diploma might not be enough. Many employers now require a college education. When changing jobs, you will at least need an associate’s degree to be competitive in the job market.

Get rid of your dead-end job

If you feel you are working in a dead-end job and see no hope of ever getting out, higher education can help. You can also find colleges that will consider your work experience and will assign credit hours. Now the question would be how to take time out for higher education. Online programs and education can help in this regard. With online programs you can study at your own pace and also follow your preferred schedule.

You need to take the Stairs

There is no elevator to success; you need to take the stairs. Lack of education might be the reason your manager is not considering you for that promotion. If you have the right skills and dedication to climb the career ladder, but still feel that lack of education is holding you back, it’s about time you did something about it. Don’t make any excuses and start working towards a degree. Most organizations recognize an employee’s higher education and some even have tuition reimbursement plans to support them.

Be Your Best Self

Higher education is not all about jobs and promotions. It’s also a great way of grooming and adding a new skill set to your resume. Higher education can bring many positive changes to your personal life. It can bring a new outlook that you might have been missing. With learning, you experience personal growth and higher education is a great way to pursue your passion and make your life more meaningful.


No matter what your purpose is for higher education, there are always benefits of pursuing an advanced degree. It never goes to waste. Higher education can be worth the effort, money, and time. It can take you further than a high school diploma, and you can always feel proud of your achievement when you get that promotion.

Cost Comparison of Online Degrees and Traditional Colleges

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Cost Comparison of Online Degrees and Traditional Colleges

With the increase in college debt and rising education costs, students need to make the right choice. It is a general perception that online schools are cheaper than traditional education.  However, a thorough analysis of costs in both systems may tell a different story. There are many variables that determine the overall cost involved with each type of education. It is good for you to have prior knowledge of variables that determine the overall cost of college education.

Traditional Education Costs

The statistics stated by College Board about the average published charges for full-time undergraduates indicate that college prices are on the rise. Have a look at the following recent statistics by College Board to get an idea of traditional college costs:

  • The average in-state published tuition cost at public four year institutes increased from $8,646 in 2012-13 to $8,893 in 2013‑14.
  • In 2013-14, the average tuition fee for out-of-state students was 3.1% more than residents at four year public institutes.
  • The average tuition fees of private non-profit four year institutes showed an increase of 3.8% from $28,989 in 2012-13 to $30,094 in 2013‑14.

The cost of college education is hard to afford for many students despite billions of dollars spent in financial aid. In this case, online education can be an affordable option, but students should know how to make a correct cost estimate when going for an online program.

Online Education Costs

Online education does not include various costs that are associated with traditional education. These costs include room and board, ancillary fees, commuting, and parking. However, it will not be correct to assume that online education costs are always less than traditional education. In some cases, there might only be a minor difference between costs of online education and traditional costs. There are certain variables that can help you come up with the realistic cost of online education:

Degree type

It goes without saying that if you go for a higher level degree, the costs will be more. Associate degrees usually charge less. Online tuition costs increase when you go for higher level degrees such as bachelors, masters and doctoral.


You may have to pay higher costs when it comes to quality online education. Bargains in online education can be tricky. If you are going for well reputed accredited online programs, costs are likely to be higher. As accredited institutes hire qualified professors and offer reputable programs, they charge higher costs. These costs eventually benefit students and pay off in the end with better services and quality of education.

Tuition Rates

Online institutes have different parameters when tuition rates are involved. Some schools charge tuition by credit hour and some by class.  The difference between these two calculation methods can be significant and if you do not consider this, you may not be able to correctly estimate your college expense.

Additional Costs

Online education does not completely free you from expenses. You may require some additional learning resources, which increases the overall cost of education. Besides, you will still need books for online education.

Since online programs have varying tuition fees, the best way to estimate the cost of online education is by looking at the information provided by the institute on their website. To find out other costs, you will require some more efforts. Talking to the admission office and other students can be helpful in determining the overall cost involved.

Cost is a major consideration for many students going for college education. If you have prior knowledge of costs and variables, you are much more likely to make a sensible decision. Also keep in mind that you shouldn’t compromise on the quality and repute for lower costs. Quality institutes are likely to charge a premium for their services. The extra money you spend pays off in the end.

If you also have some useful tips to estimate college costs for students, feel free to share!

Lessons we can learn from Nelson Mandela’s Extraordinary Life

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Lessons we can learn from Nelson Mandela’s Extraordinary Life

Greatness doesn’t come easy, it requires determination and perseverance.  It also requires tough labor in Robben Island and being jailed for more than 27 years. Nelson Mandela  or ’Madiba’ is a real life super-hero who has inspired millions and will continue to do so for future generations.

“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”

This man was able to change the world not only because he was determined, but he had his facts right. He had his education to back his vision. Nowadays, there is absolutely no excuse for you to stay uneducated or uninformed. Go for online programs if you can’t take out time for on-campus ones. Live your dreams!

“The greatest glory in living lies in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.”

As a student, you are likely to face disappointments, lose motivation, and even fail. But don’t make your failure permanent. If you imagine the strength of Mandela’s resolve, you wouldn’t ever want to give up!

“A good head and good heart are always a formidable combination. But when you add to that a literate tongue or pen, then you have something very special.”

Everyone knew that Mandela possessed this combination – a good head, heart, and the knowledge to use his tongue and pen wisely. If you feel that you possess this combination, be determined to get the latter as well. Learn to use your tongue and pen. With your good intentions, education can only work wonders.

“Resentment is like drinking poison and then hoping it will kill your enemies.”

Don’t be a hater! Don’t just avoid hating humans but also inanimate objects like your education courses. Hating only consumes you, even if it’s just that math class you hate. Let go of the bitter feelings, and replace love and wisdom to deal with what bothers you.

“There is no passion to be found playing small – in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.”

Playing safe will get you across the road but not over that mountain. Mediocrity can become your biggest regret. Reach out to your dreams and have the belief that you’ll realize your vision. Work hard, stay determined, and do not bow down to circumstances. Have a clear vision and no hurdle will ever dampen your spirits. Learn from this man’s experience, and never ever work below your potential.

A life of courage, education, and determination is a meaningful life. Sounds idealistic? You have witnessed a man who has been a living example and inspiration for all those pessimists out there. In the end always remember, never make small plans, they don’t have the magic to stir men’s blood.

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