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Online Accredited Courses - Make Sure Your Diploma Is Real
Many students are confused about what accreditation means. That’s understandable. But it’s important to learn about how both online universities and traditional colleges get the “stamp of approval” that comes with accreditation, and to find out what level of accreditation your chosen school has before you sign your first tuition check. Some schools have only some online accredited courses or majors, but don’t have blanket accreditation for all the programs they offer.
Whether you’re pursuing an associates, undergraduate, masters or graduate degree, it’s advisable that you make sure you’re taking 100% accredited online courses. You don’t want to get an accounting degree, for example, from a school and then find that the nursing program is the only accredited degree your school offers.
Key To A Good Job
The problem is that there's no single accreditation agency that provides online colleges and universities, or even traditional campus-based schools, with any kind of national accreditation. That's true whether you're attending live classes or pursuing an online degree. Educators have debated for years about whether a national authority should be created to certify all the accredited colleges and universities in America in a standardized way. But right now, college accreditation is given out by several different, and disconnected groups that look at most schools based on geographic location.
See a list of good, low-cost online bachelor and associate degree programs.
Top Accrediting Groups
Seven major regional associations have been given this authority by the USDE, and you can use those groups as a resource when if you’re researching brick and mortar schools, a list of accredited online degree colleges, degree completion programs, continuing education or particular online courses you want to take:
1) The Distance Education & Training Council (DETC), which rates and approves college degrees online from accredited colleges in about 70 different locations. DETC is the largest accrediting authority focused entirely on online college degree programs.
2) The Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges & Schools. (Read more on How credible are the accreditation agencies?)
Students looking for very specific college online career development courses need to "connect the
dots" on accreditation. In some states, you'll be unable to get a
teacher's license, for example, if your online degree is from a school that's not accredited
by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE).
State organizations that give licenses to practice law, engineering or
even to teach at the higher education level (college) will also, in many
cases, require that you have a degree from a school accredited by a
specific professional board.
Do Your Homework
For more research help to find a valid online degree, try our Resources for checking accreditation of online schools
Top Schools Specializing In Online Degrees:
Offers a very wide range of bachelor's, master's and associates degrees in
- Criminal Justice
- Health Care
- Computer Technology
- Information Systems
- Legal Studies
Learn more about Kaplan's degree programs
Liberty is a private Christian school that has grown into a major provider of online degree prorams. It offers a wide array of certificate, bachelor, associate and masters degrees in:
- Criminal Justice
Get free info on Liberty University Online
Iowa-based school established in 1918, Ashford offers a vast array of online degrees online across the range from associate to bachelor and masters, in addition to it's campus-based programs. Degrees available in:
- Business Management - BA & MBA in 19 different specialties
- Early Childhood Education
- Health Care Studies
- Homeland Security
- Sports Managment
Get information on Ashford's online programs
Herzing University Online
Herzing is a 13-campus school with an online division offering a very wide variety of associates, bachelors and masters degrees as well as diploma programs. All programs have a strong career focus, and the school has a particularly strong history in computer science. Degrees offered in:
- Public Safety
Get free info on Herzing University Online
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