It’s pretty much standard that every job hunter should have some kind of college degree. You’ve probably seen job listings that require a specific level of education, probably at least a bachelor’s degree for any kind of specialized work, as well as a certain amount of experience even to be considered for the job.
On the other hand, we all know the danger of student loan debt that accompanies that degree and the fear that even with a college degree you won’t be able to find a job in your chosen field. So what’s the solution here?
Most employers are understanding when it comes to all of this. As a result, many will consider a candidate with an online degree alongside one with a degree from a “bricks and ivy” university. The stigma against online degrees is dissipating and they’re becoming a viable measure of talent and ability in the workplace.
What employers are looking for
There is an expectation that employers will look down on people who have online degrees, or at least favor those with a degree from a traditional university, but that’s proving to be untrue. In fact, most online schools offer high quality education and prepare students to enter the workforce. There are many factors that matter a lot more than where you got your education, such as:
- Your college GPA
- The degree you have
- Previous work experience
- The interview and your resume
- Your attitude, the way you present yourself, and your ability to work on a team
In most cases, employers won’t ask whether you attended classes on a campus. The ability to preform the job well, previous experience in the field, and whether you can work with others as the position requires are all far more important than where or how you secured your education to get to where you are.
If you can show in the interview that you would be a great employee, then having an online degree won’t count against you.
The benefits of an online degree
Getting a degree online isn’t right for everyone, but if you’re driven and self-motivated then it’s a great option. Getting an online education will let you fit classes into the rest of your life, rather than having to squeeze your job and personal life between classes.
Not only are online classes easier to adapt to, but online schools are usually a lot less expensive than other colleges and universities. Plus, if you’re a first-time student, you won’t get bogged down by housing and meal plans at an online school the way you would be if you attended a university.
When considering an online school, it’s important to look for one that offers the classes and the degree you want (the ones that will help you land that dream job). Also check to see that it has positive reviews from alumni and professionals, and, of course, fits into your budget.
As a student taking online classes, it’s your responsibility to ask for help and talk to professors via Skype or email when you need clarification. Getting a degree online doesn’t mean you have to learn alone, but you do need to make an extra effort to get help and make connections in order to get the most out of your degree.