Online college courses can help you earn a degree, improve your resume, or develop a new skill just for fun.  A growing number of students are taking online college courses to earn their degrees. Some students earn entire degrees online, some transfer traditional college credits to an online program, and some transfer credits from their online college courses to a traditional school.  Making it possible to be enrolled in a course and engaged in discussions even though you do not need to log on to a website at a specific time, college courses online are convenient and many can be taken asynchronously. Online college courses in thought-heavy topics (such as English, humanities, math, etc.) tend to be more common than online college courses covering action-specific subjects (like lab science, art, medicine, etc.) Make sure that the school you’re choosing is properly accredited in case you are interested in taking online college courses that lead to a degree.  Keep in mind that many traditional and online colleges do not easily accept credit transfers. Talk to counselors at both schools to make sure that your online college course credits will be approved in case your plan includes transferring schools at some point.

How to take online college courses

You can take online college courses to improve your resume and develop skills that are valued in the workplace even in case you don’t want to earn an entire degree through the internet. You may choose to take online college courses ala carte. Or, you may enroll in an online professional development program. Check with your workplace or experts in your field to see how a particular online college course will be received in your industry. For example, some computer certification courses that are highly coveted for secretarial work would be considered unnecessary for those employed in a managerial position. Many students are able to take online college courses for free by asking their employers to cover the cost of their tuition. Tuition reimbursement programs are designed for employees that complete coursework or earn degrees related to their position or a position they may qualify for.  He or she may be willing to work with you to subsidize coursework that will help you do better at your job even in case your employer doesn’t have a formal tuition assistance program in place. Online college courses aren’t all about profit and degrees. Many students enroll in online college courses just to learn a skill they are interested in or explore a subject they are curious about. Some schools will allow students to take a class pass/fail so that students do not need to concern themselves with receiving grades. You may want to explore many of the free online classes that are now available as an alternative to taking online college courses through formal enrollment. Dozens of traditional colleges make their course lectures, assignments, and reading guides openly available to the public as opencourseware. You won’t have access to an instructor to help you through the content. Nor will you receive graded feedback by taking free online college courses.