5 Things Veterans Should Know About Online College

Online College Facts for Veterans

  • You Must be a Self-Starter
  • Online Learning is Flexible
  • Scholarships are Available for You and Your Family
  • Accreditation Matters
  • Get a Valuable Degree

When it comes to furthering your education after you’ve served your country, there are five things veterans should know about online college. This is because not all programs are created equal, and as a veteran, you should be given the best education possible. In fact, as Forbes reports, getting an online degree when transitioning to civilian life can lead to opportunities you didn’t know existed. Check out our top things to know before starting online college.

You Must be a Self-Starter

Just like in the military, there is an immense amount of responsibility. You will be expected to complete assignments and take exams on your own schedule and while all of your degree requirements are laid out for you before you start, you’re largely left to your own devices about making sure everything gets done on time.

But veterans like yourself will benefit from this; you’re used to making decisions and getting things done. For the most ambitious veterans, it’s also possible to get down to business and graduate early, something that will let you transition to civilian life much faster.

Online Learning is Flexible

This is one of the most important things veterans should know about online college. Online learning generally doesn’t have fixed times for classrooms, meaning you can choose when and where you study. The only things that are scheduled are assignments, projects, and exams; participation in live sessions is rarely required.

But online learning is also flexible in other ways: courses can be taught in 16-week, eight-week, and even five-week terms, allowing you to choose how long you study a subject. Some schools also offer J-terms, which is a short term in January to help online students stay on track with their degree plan.

Scholarships are Available for You and Your Family

American schools are well-known for their dedication to veterans. That’s why one of the most important things for veterans like yourself to know is the existence of military scholarships. These are scholarships specifically created to fund the online education of this country’s veterans and don’t require more than proof you were in the military.

But it doesn’t stop there: many colleges offer veterans-only online tuition fees, which tend to be half the normal tuition rate. Scholarships for your spouse and your children are also available from select schools, so take the time to research these benefits and the schools that offer them.

Accreditation Matters

No matter if you go to a traditional campus or get your degree online, a school’s accreditation matters; however, it’s more important for online schools. This is because online schools are a relatively new invention, having first appeared in 1998 and have been mainstream for the last decade.

Schools are accredited by both regional associations and by independent associations for select programs. Accreditations mean that a school meets a standard of academic excellence and is valued by employers in the public and private sectors.

One of the most important things a veteran should know about online college is to get a degree from an accredited school. Many of the schools who don’t hold accreditation are for-profit scams or degree mills and will not help you get a job.

Get a Valuable Degree

It goes without saying that one of the things veterans should know about online college is to get a valuable degree. Fields like computer science, criminal justice, engineering, education, management and nursing are all great choices for veterans.

While there are many degrees available at the college level, some lead to jobs that are estimated to increase in demand over the next ten years, ensuring that veterans leave the online college experience with viable options for employment. A site like Forbes can help you pinpoint which of your interests you can translate into a fulfilling career; most of these jobs require a college education that can be obtained by online colleges.

Deciding to go back to school is a smart decision for anyone, including veterans. However, be smart about how you approach this next part of your life. Keep these five things veterans should know about online college in mind while searching for the right school and make your transition to civilian life an easy one.

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