Online Bachelor Degree Myths Uncovered

By Fort Hays State University on July, 12 2023

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Whether you are looking to finish a degree or start the process of earning one, an online bachelor degree can open up a number of opportunities for higher earning potential, career advancement, and gaining competitive skills.

Continuing your education is a big decision, but it can be a powerful tool in unlocking your potential and changing your life for the better. If you are stuck in a job with few opportunities for advancement or want to advance your career in your current profession, a bachelor’s degree can open new doors and jump start your future.

Earning a degree online has become a new normal. Over 1.2 million people engaged in some type of distanced learning in 2019. Earning a bachelor’s degree online allows students to have more flexibility in the location and time of their learning. 

As earning a degree online continues to grow in popularity, digital learning will continue to be normalized and open up education to students across the country. But new opportunities and innovations can lead to misconceptions as the traditional way of attaining a degree changes. Let’s clear up some of the myths around earning an online bachelor degree. 

Is an online degree comparable to a degree earned in-person?

Yes. An online degree takes the same amount of learning and dedication as a degree earned in-person. And earning an online degree isn’t easier simply because it’s a different format for learning. Like a degree earned inside a lecture hall, online students attend classes, do homework, study for tests, take quizzes, and complete team projects. Additionally, with the flexibility offered by many online degree programs, students are more responsible for their time-management and accountability in watching lectures and completing assignments. 

While in-person degrees have been the more traditional route of attaining an education in the past, online degrees:

  • are often based on the same curriculum as in-person classes
  • teach competitive skills
  • are degrees of equal worth

Online classes offer students a different format to be able to learn with more flexibility, but the degree earned upon completion is the same. Earning a degree is hard work. Whether you earn your bachelor’s degree online or in-person, you should be proud of your accomplishment! 

Is it harder to connect with professors and classmates in online courses?

No. While the opportunities for connection will be more digital than those of an in-person student, connection is not only possible but encouraged in our online courses. Additionally, many online degree programs have career services support, student groups, networking events, and other opportunities to create friendships and build professional relationships. At FHSU Online, digital students can join student groups, run for virtual student senate, and even travel abroad. Students on-campus and online have similar opportunities for connection, but it’s up to each individual student in both cases to make the most of their time at school. 

Do employers prefer degrees earned in-person?

It depends on the employer. Although there is no need to specify that your degree was earned online when listing it on your resume. The quality of the online university where you earn your degree matters. Choosing an accredited, award-winning institution to complete your online education can give employers confidence in the quality of your degree. For many employers, what matters most is that you have a bachelor’s degree, as 82% of business executives consider a college degree very important or essential.

Employers may ask about your degree, particularly if it was earned while working full-time or if you took time off from working to earn a degree and have an employment gap in your resume. This is a great opportunity to expand on the knowledge and skills you will gain throughout your education and to highlight the skills you can accumulate in an online setting. Earning an online bachelor’s degree builds your time management skills, your ability to work independently, and your technical skills, among many others.

Do online students have less support than in-person students?

No. Educators teaching online classes are as dedicated to their online students as their on campus  colleagues. Similarly to classes taught in-person, professors hold digital office hours and encourage students to seek out help. Online students have opportunities to meet with professors during digital office hours and engage with digital tutors and teaching assistants. Online students also have access to career services throughout the course of their degree for assistance with resume building, career exploration, and job hunting. 

Will online credits transfer to another school?

Maybe. Transfer credits are a difficulty faced by in-person and online students alike. Every college and university has their own requirements for accepting transfer credits and unfortunately, a student’s ability to transfer credits depends on where they are looking to transfer. Overall, online credits are just as likely as credits earned on-campus to be accepted. Talk to an admissions advisor at the school you’re looking to transfer to for further information about whether your credits will transfer. To determine how many of your credits may transfer to Fort Hays State University, we offer free transcript evaluations for prospective transfer students.

Do you need to be tech-savvy to succeed in an online course?

No. Some basic familiarity and experience using a computer and navigating the internet is needed, but similar requirements are expected in most professions. Many online education tools are created and consistently improved with user experience in mind. While learning how to utilize online education platforms can be daunting as you begin your online degree, gaining technical competence with those platforms and tools has a short learning curve. And once you’ve mastered the ins and outs in your first few online classes, you’ll build on those skills throughout the course of your degree. You can even try a demo of Blackboard, a learning management system who has been helping students learn virtually for over twenty years. The demo course can give you an idea of what you can expect from an online education.

Are all online degrees at different institutions the same?

No. Every institution that offers online education has different teachers, class offerings, and degree requirements. As with an on-campus education, online universities vary widely in their degrees offered, class sizes, and culture to focus on and offer their specialties. Some online degree programs are accredited while others are not. When you are considering an online degree program, do your research and find a university accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and with the degree program and experience to help you make your online education a lifelong success. 

Interested in pursuing an online bachelor’s degree?

Check out Fort Hays State University! We offer award-winning online education in more than 200 online degree and certificate programs. We focus on connecting innovative faculty with passionate students who are looking to earn or complete their degree with flexibility, affordability, and quality in mind. Get in touch to learn more about FHSU Online today!

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