Accelerated Online Degrees
An accelerated online bachelor's degree program is designed to take as little as two years to complete through distance education. Students take classes all year long without breaks, and classes are often compressed into 5- or 8-week terms instead of the 18-week semesters of a traditional university schedule. Both brick-and-mortar and online-only colleges have accelerated bachelor's degree programs online. The most common accelerated degree programs include degrees in business, management, health care or general studies. Many accelerated programs are offered as a degree completion program for students who already hold prior coursework.
Methods of Delivery
How does the college deliver classes? Colleges use synchronous and asynchronous distance learning processes. Synchronous - or real-time - courses have a set class time during which students must participate in live chat or streamed video lecture. Asynchronous programs let a student access course materials and work on exercises at any time of day, with communication by methods such as email, message boards, blogs or bulletin boards.
Taking classes at a set time may bring stability and structure to the learning experience, but a class may be set at a time that is not convenient for an online student. Taking classes at any time may be suitable for a student with a job, but can also cause problems if a student is not focused and motivated.
What are the admission requirements for an online program? Each school has different requirements for students to enter an accelerated online degree program. Schools may specify the number of credit hours that a student needs for admission to an accelerated bachelor's degree completion program. Online degree completion programs usually require that students hold some prior college coursework in liberal arts and sciences or an entire associate's degree to enter the bachelor's degree program. Students must meet a school's specified grade point average requirements. Some schools also require a statement of purpose and a resume.
Choosing a Program
So how do you choose an online program? A prospective student in an accelerated online bachelor's degree program may want to determine that the school is accredited by a reputable accrediting agency to ensure that employers recognize the degree conferred. When choosing a degree program, students might also examine the cost of tuition and books. Taking an accelerated bachelor's degree program online gives students many choices of schools, so students can shop around to find a high-quality education within their budget.
How to Choose an Online Program
When choosing an online program, consider the following questions:
- Would you like synchronous or asynchronous classes?
- What are the admission requirements?
- Is the school accredited?
- What is the cost of books and tuition?