In today’s economic environment, going back to school to pursue a university degree has become an attractive option for getting a heads-up in the career game. But going back to school is not feasible for many. Work, parenting and other responsibilities take precedence over school. Fortunately, for many adults looking to return to school, there are plenty of online programs that can fit easily into their busy lives. Being able to study on their own time and at their own pace makes online degrees easily obtainable for working adults and parents. And at a fraction of the cost, affordable too.
Online universities have changed the way adult students earn their education and degree. There are quite a few online programs to choose from, so deciding which one is best can be a challenge. Just as there are prestigious brick and mortar universities, there are reputable online colleges. Deciding which program to enroll in will depend on the type of degree that is desired. To help narrow down the choices, give this list of the top ten online degree programs a look. Each university offers a comprehensive online program that leads to a degree that can unlock a new career.
The main campus of Liberty University is located in Lynchburg, Virginia. It has the honor of being the largest non-profit liberal arts university in the United States modeled on the Christian faith.
In recent years, Liberty University has built a rapidly expanding online degree program. High school students can begin earning college credits, while adults can go after degrees ranging from an associate’s to a doctorate.
To learn more about Liberty University Online, visit their website at: http://www.liberty.edu/online/
Walden University’s online program is known for its commitment to high academic standards and demanding curriculums. Their programs are perfect for professionals who may already hold a degree but want to continue their education.
Offering more than 60 different online programs in areas such as management, human services and public administration, Walden University boasts over 40 years of experience. Programs are designed to help students enhance their careers and personally enrich their lives.
Visit Walden University Online to find out which programs they offer at: http://info.waldenu.edu/
Organized in 1854, this university offers two- and four-year degrees online or at one of their campuses. Online students are offered a wide selection of virtual study tools and materials.
Bryant and Stratton College’s online courses can be earned from anywhere in the United States. In an attempt to include online students in a graduation ceremony, Bryant and Stratton held one of the first online ceremonies on Second Life.
Find out more about their programs at: http://www.bryantstratton.edu/Online-Learning.aspx
Arizona State University has called Phoenix, AZ its home since 1885. Their rapidly growing online offerings have been picking up awards for being some of the best online bachelor’s degree programs.
Offering bachelor’s degrees in the arts or sciences, Arizona State University Online caters to many fields, such as: English, information technology, communication, history, film studies and many other bachelor’s level degree majors.
Find out more about Arizona State’s online programs at: http://asuonline.asu.edu/
5. Southern New Hampshire University
Since 1932, Southern New Hampshire University has been offering continuing education courses for adults. Offering affordable, high quality online bachelor’s degree programs, this university has become a high-ranking online school.
Adult students of SNHU’s online program can earn a bachelor’s degree in communications, English, accounting, history and many others. Students can rest easy with their 24/7 student support in case issues arise.
Learn more about SNHU’s online program through their website at: http://www.snhu.edu/
6. Oregon State University Ecampus
Oregon State University has been educating adult students since 1858. The liberal arts program has become a mainstay, but the Ecampus offers several other acclaimed degree courses in various majors.
The Ecampus has proved to be quite benefical for students, and they are offered 700 courses in 70 subjects, 30 degree programs and 18 minors, along with many helpful tools.
To find out what programs Oregon State University Ecampus offers, see their website at: http://ecampus.oregonstate.edu/
7. Clarion University Online College
Located in the Pennsylvania town for which it’s named after, this university offers several associates and bachelor’s degrees, special programs, certificates and graduate degrees.
There are several online programs from which students can choose and three brick-and-mortar locations. One of their best programs available for both traditional and online students is their Master’s degree in library sciences.
Learn more about their online programs and degrees at: http://www.clarion.edu/263/
8. University of the Southwest
Founded in 1956 as a Baptist school, the University of the Southwest is a private university in Hobbs, New Mexico. Taking a Christian approach to education, this school has topped the charts.
The University of the Southwest offers bachelor’s level degree programs in majors such as psychology, business administration and criminal justice, with room for a wide range of concentrations in each program.
Find out more about the University of the Southwest’s high-ranking online program at: http://www.usw.edu/distance_learning
9. Penn State World Campus Online
Penn State is a name nearly every college student is familiar with. And it is no surprise that their online program tops the charts. The online program was launched in 1998 and continues to go strong.
Penn State online offers many bachelor’s degree programs online, including some unique majors and degree titles such as turfgrass science, labor and employment relations, and green programs like energy and sustainability policies.
Find out more about Penn State’s online degrees by visiting: http://www.worldcampus.psu.edu/
10. Saint Leo University Online College
In 1889, Saint Leo became the first Catholic university in Florida. Launching their online program in 1999, this outstanding liberal arts college began to pave the way for online degree courses everywhere.
Saint Leo has made a name for itself as a military-friendly college grounded in Benedictine philosophy. They offer degree programs in business administration and criminal justice, among many other online courses.
To learn more about Saint Leo’s degree programs, visit their website at: http://www.saintleo.edu/
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Top Paying Career #10 in 2012! SAP Basis Administrator
Earning your MBA is a proven way to turbo charge both your career path and your salary. Recent data indicates that earning your business degree still is a great way to increase your earnings, particularly in your first job after you get your degree. With the advent of MOOCs(Massive Open Online Classes), now even an affordable mba online search should be part of your thought process.
Some business career paths, naturally, will be in more demand and command higher salaries than others. Some of the most killer career paths for future MBAs include these:
#1 IT Systems Analyst
Computer systems analysts understand the technical side of their business – how to implement the best hardware, software and networks, and also can exercise good sense when dealing with people and preparing cost benefit analysis. A strong business school education can really hone these skills and make you very much in demand in the booming IT field. Leading tech companies, such as IBM, are known for looking for people who can not only handle the technical side of the job, but also are skilled in the business analysis side.
#2 Human Resources Management
While this may not sound like a killer career path for an MBA, don’t be fooled! There has been a recent surge in demand for human resource management professionals, and having an advanced business degree will help to put your application on the top of the pile. This is a particularly excellent career path for MBAs who are interested in training. Working in HR management directly affects employee productivity, and also the overall success of the company. You should particularly look for employment at companies that have a strong record of treating HR as a business partner and not as an operational necessity. Two good examples are Proctor and Gamble and Amgen.
#3 Health Care
The population is aging and are more active than ever, so there is major growth in health care. That is why there is more demand for more medical professionals and more medical and health care facilities. This, in turn, means there is much more demand for effective business managers with MBAs to effectively administer these health organizations. This makes health care one of the top professions for new MBAs. Some of the most killer career paths in this field for new MBAs include hospital administrator, pharmaceutical project manager, practice manager and hospital CFO.
#4 Database Administration
A good database administrator with an MBA possesses a strong understanding of how her role in building a good database helps the company as a whole. In this booming field, you will create the systems in a company that store and process information, and you will use your skills as an MBA to make this a highly efficient process. Some MBAs who start out as a database administrator may be able to move into a senior database management position and eventually into a role as chief technology officer.
#5 Management Consulting
Management consultants provide the direction that companies need to stay competitive. In this field, you will typically focus on one particular industry, such as technology or manufacturing. You will help the company solve complex management problems and to control costs. It is believed that management consulting jobs will grow by more than 20% by 2020, so this is another booming field ripe with opportunities for MBAs.
#6 Finance and Banking
While it is true that this traditional MBA field took a sizable hit in the financial downturn, things are beginning to turn around. And the money that you can make on Wall Street is impressive. For example, a hedge fund trader can make over $1 million a year easily, as can hedge fund research managers, who conduct vital research into investment opportunities. Proprietary traders also can earn over $1 million per year.
#7 Marketing Management
A good marketing manager is very important in helping a company expand into new markets and to find new customers. Your main objective will be to boost sales and profitability. You will research trends, find opportunities, estimate demand and develop effective marketing campaigns. An MBA degree will definitely increase your chances of landing a job in this growing field. The Bureau of Labor Statistics states that the field of marketing and advertising management will grow by 14% by 2020, so there will be plenty of jobs available.