What Employers Really Think About Distance Learning

Distance Learning Degree: What Employers Really Think

The majority of college students are working full or part time while in school. While the demands of the job market continue to evolve, working adults struggle to evolve with them, attempting to enrich their own marketability with valuable degrees all the while trying to juggle their current career and family obligations. Many students struggle with the choice of whether or not to seek an online degree. What really matters in the end, however, is what a potential employer will think about your distance learning degree.

The Big Picture

A survey conducted by Zogby International showed that 83% of executives and business owners felt that online degrees were just as credible as traditionally acquired degrees, citing that overall job qualifications were taken into consideration along with an individual's degree credential. An employer wants to hire people that can perform, and whether or not an individual can perform cannot be entirely determined by where or how they earned their degree.

Names Are Still Important

There are still some misgivings concerning degree programs that are entirely based online and not affiliated somehow with a traditional brick and mortar school. In most instances if you earn a degree online from an established, traditional college or university, an employer will not know whether or not you were a traditional on campus student or an online student. Employers like to see credible, recognizable names of quality schools attached to a degree. Because so many traditional schools are now offering their degree programs online, it is not difficult to earn a well credited degree the more convenient way.

Accreditation Is Still Important

Employers are busy people and most of them will trust the value of your degree to whatever accrediting agency your school is operated under. It is extremely important to do your research on this point before choosing a school. Some accreditation agencies are more reputable than others. Even if the name of the school you choose is not highly recognizable, the accreditation agency associated with your school should be.

Show Me What You've Got

Students who earn an online degree should not be surprised or irritated if an employer requires a little more from you in order to prove yourself. You must consider that many traditional schools have been operating for over a hundred years and no one doubts the type of individuals and employees that these schools produce. The world of online degree programs is less than twenty years old; so many employers are still suspicious. Consider it a lucky break if an employer decides to take a risk on you, and do not be disappointed if they want a little something extra to put their mind at ease. Sometimes this may mean getting hired on probation so that an employer can observe your skills first hand. Some employers may ask potential employees to obtain further industry specific certifications or training. You should not find this offensive, but rather be thankful for the opportunity to expand your own knowledge and prove what an amazing employee you are going to be.

Hard Core Traditionalists

Despite the obvious evolution of education toward online learning, there will always be those hardcore traditionalists that insist their employees prove they earned a degree on campus at a reputable school. If you choose the online path for obtaining a degree, you will have to accept that some employers will think you have missed out on some valuable face to face learning experiences that can only be held in a traditional classroom.

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