Online learning, from high school to graduate achool courses, has become an important and growing part of education around the world. There are a large number of websites on the Internet devoted to helping students find schools and courses that meet their needs. Surprisingly, there are a number of online high schools offering high school and college level courses, including state sponsored programs, individual high schools and universities.
Other sites focus strictly on colleges and universities while other sites list career or para-professional online learning schools as well. The number of schools listed at websites varies varies from 210 to over 300. However, it should be noted that many of these schools may not be accredited and in the world of higher education, proper accreditation is extremely important for the validity and prestige of the degree or certificate conferred. With that fact in mind, it is important to ensure that any online college or university considered is fully accredited.
There are also advantages to taking college or career related courses online. The biggest advantage is convenience, especially for those who are working part or full-time. Online learning gives students the freedom to fit course work into time periods that do not conflict with work and exposure to students from other areas. Students can also pace themselves, depending on the course material. Online learning may be less expensive, especially in terms of travel and books. Cost is an important aspect that needs to be checked out thoroughly before committing to a program. Most importantly, it is important to recognize that online learning requires good time management skills, discipline and commitment to be successful.