Online masters degree explained

Why get an online masters degree?

For some time, the American economy has been contracting. It began in the manufacturing industries where jobs were outsourced to countries with lower wage expectations, and then spread to the white collar jobs. Now all the top professional and business organizations have back offices in countries like India which speak English and offer cheaper resources. When the recession hit, this accelerated the process of downsizing. Since businesses are run for the benefit of the investors and not the employees, the jobs are cut back to save on costs and keep the profits high. So the only way you can get one of the better jobs today is to have the right qualifications. Twenty years ago, you could get a reasonable job with a high school degree. Today, the door to higher paying jobs will not open unless you have a masters degree in a relevant subject, e.g. you need a Master of Social Work to become a social worker.

What subjects are available?

When you look at the online masters degree market, the range of subjects covered is increasingly impressive. The most popular are in Business Administration, Education, Health, IT and Law. Equally impressive are the universities and colleges offering distance learning opportunities. Even some of the Ivy League universities are now making some courses available online.

Why study online?

The majority of universities and colleges require people to have practical experience before they can enroll on a postgraduate course such as the MBA. If you already have a job, it is dangerous to give it up to return to full-time study. For all a masters degree will give you an edge when trying to find a new job, it can be safer to work while studying an online masters degree program. It helps pay your fees and keeps your resume looking good.

What are the problems?

You should always check the online masters degree program is properly accredited. It would be a terrible waste of your time and money if you studied for a qualification no employer will recognize. Second, you have to be more self-disciplined. When you go to a campus, everyone around you keeps you motivated. Can you work at home? Finally, there's the question of funding. There are scholarships available for online masters degree courses. Ask the graduate schools for their guidance on where you may find financial help.

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