School at Home: Universities Offering Degrees From Home

The advancement of the Internet and web-based technologies has made earning a degree from home not only possible, but just as challenging and rewarding as traditional campus-based learning. Online programs and degrees are becoming more and more recognized and respected as technology becomes increasingly sophisticated.

Two universities offering online study programs include Washington State University and the University of North Carolina. Depending on the program, course material may be delivered through a variety of methods.

Earning a Degree from Home

There are quite a few online degree options available for students who want or need to complete a degree from home. Many accredited community colleges and 4-year institutions offer a variety of majors and degrees online, including professional certificates, associate, bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees. The application and enrollment process for online programs are different for each school, but generally, they are the same for online programs as they are for on-campus programs, as are general educational requirements and admission costs.

Washington State University

Washington State University Online offers both undergraduate and graduate level programs online. The school's undergraduate offerings include ten bachelor's degree programs, including the following:

  • Accounting
  • Criminal justice
  • Social sciences
  • Psychology
  • Hospitality business management

There are also a variety of undergraduate certificates available. Some options include:

  • American Indian studies
  • Gerontology
  • Molecular biosciences
  • Professional writing

At the master's degree level, Washington State University offers Master of Science (MS), Master of Arts (MA), Master of Education (EdM), Master of Business Administration (MBA) and professional science master's degrees. Program options include:

  • MS in Agriculture
  • MA in Strategic Communication
  • EdM in Special Education
  • Executive MBA
  • PSM in Electric Power Engineering

There are also three graduate certificates available through Washington State University, in the following subjects:

  • Bioethics
  • Engineering and technology management
  • Sustainable agriculture

University of North Carolina Online

The University of North Carolina Online offers almost 400 programs in 11 subject areas. Students can take non-degree classes in a wide range of subjects, including:

  • Agriculture
  • Business
  • Health professions

Bachelor's degrees are also offered in many subjects, including:

  • Business administration
  • Health services management
  • Hospitality management

Master's degrees available through UNC Online include:

  • Art education
  • Business administration
  • Construction management
  • Criminal justice
  • Library science

The school also offers several graduate certificates in these fields:

  • Horticulture
  • Security studies
  • Nursing administration

Technical & Other Requirements

Students wishing to earn a degree from home must have a computer and access to the Internet, since online degree programs rely heavily on web-based technologies. Most degree programs make use of chat rooms, webinars, videos, online libraries and online learning management systems to deliver course material, provide lectures and discussions, deliver assignments and provide interaction with instructors and fellow students.

Some online degree programs allow students to attend 'school' completely at their own pace, basing progress on the successful completion of challenging assessments. This allows students to earn their degree as quickly or as slowly as they like. On the other hand, some schools require students to follow the school's regular term schedule or even attend synchronous online lectures at specific times. Additionally, some programs are 100% online, while others offer a combination of both online and on-campus classes.

Students who are interested in at-home studies can consider the programs offered by Washington State University and the University of North Carolina. Program formats vary.

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