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online-college4A Bachelor’s degree is a four-year credential that provides students with an inclusive college-level arts or science education. In addition to broad-spectrum learning, Bachelor degree programs target students’ specific fields of interest in scholarly courses and careers. Both on-campus colleges and universities, as well as online colleges, offer this type of degree.

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The Bachelor’s is the most common degree sought after by high school graduates and others who are looking to gain the experience and education recommended for transitioning into their desired profession. Before being considered for acceptance into the degree program, the student must first submit their high school transcript to the college(s) in which they are interested in applying.

Once enrolled, the first two years typically consist of introductory courses to the student’s chosen major, along with general education courses across the curriculum. The second two years of a Bachelor’s degree program usually focus on courses specifically related to the student’s major (primary field of study), minor (secondary field of study), or both. Online schooling provides students with an accredited education for a lower cost, saving them time and money by eliminating the need to commute or relocate to a school. Online programs also allow students to complete their degree at their own pace.

Obtaining a Bachelor’s degree can help individuals earn a higher salary than those without, and can also help secure a job with greater benefits. However, a Bachelor’s degree is not for everyone. In this text, you will gain insight into how valuable a Bachelor’s degree can be, and we will guide you in choosing the right degree program for you.

Does a Bachelor’s Degree Pay?

A 2013 survey conducted by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) concluded that individuals who have obtained their Bachelor’s degree earn significantly more than those with only a high school diploma. Graduates were projected to have an average salary of $50,556, according to online research in 2016. That’s up 5% from 2014 when new grads earned an average of $48,127. (NACE)

Bachelor’s Degrees: The Basics

Campus colleges and online schools both offer two different types of Bachelor’s degrees: A Bachelor’s of Arts, or a B.A., which focuses mainly on fine arts, social sciences, and humanities and a Bachelor’s of Science, or a B.S., which focuses on mathematics, and physical and life sciences.

Degree courses are divided into two parts. The first two years of the degree are considered lower-division coursework, typically covering the core studies and general education of the liberal arts and sciences curriculum. It is here where the student receives an introduction to their major field of study. The last two years of the program are the upper-division coursework, concentrating on advanced studies in one’s choice of major. Students may take progressive courses after completing prerequisites. Lastly, during the final semester, the student will begin working internships and building a portfolio of their experience and objectives.

In the following table, you will find a layout of what to expect from the bachelor’s degree curriculum.

Survey in Biology An overview of life processes and fundamental biological concepts for non-science majors. Included are some laboratory hours.
English Composition Lessons on how to efficiently gather information and conduct research, focusing on idea organization for the writing process.
Computer Science Fundamentals A base course that introduces theories and designs for employing algorithms and programming languages for computer science majors, with math 101 as a pre-requisite.
Introduction to Psychology Looks into the fundamental concepts and principles of psychology, covering topics such as personality, abnormalities, sensory perception, and coping strategies.
Contemporary Global Challenges and Issues Intermediate lessons on world topics such as culture, global warming, starvation, humanitarianism, energy policy, and peacekeeping institutions.
Principles of Criminal Investigation Insight into detecting and preserving forensic evidence. Includes laboratory sessions with Introduction to Criminology as a pre-requisite.
Race, Gender and Class in the Media The Departments of Communication, and American Ethnic Studies offer insight into media organization of stereotypes and its effect on public opinion.
Early Childhood Curriculum Designing and implementing early learning programs that support topics such as literary competence, social and cognitive development, and individuals with economic disadvantages, using evidence-based models.
Advanced Business Administration Includes studies on accounting, business law and organization, ethics, international commerce, networking, marketing, finance, and so on.
Undergraduate Independent Study in Urban Planning Students are mentored and assigned independent research projects and work associated to fields dealing with the environment of the community, sustainability, and ethics following these studies.

When a Bachelor’s Degree Makes Sense

When students are ready to enter a line of work beyond an entry-level position, earning a Bachelor’s degree is the way to ensure a well-rounded education and establish themselves in their career of choice. The students’ major should align with the type of work they are looking to pursue, as these highlighted skills will pique the interest of hiring businesses. Online and campus schools make it easy for students wanting to earn their bachelor’s degree by offering different options, like continuing to a degree program after earning an associate’s or having already taken a few college classes.

Bachelor’s degree holders can use their education in numerous fields of study to merge into careers, such as: auditing, architecture, financial analysis, sales management, insurance underwriting, cost estimation, credit counseling, teaching and training, tax collection, response to police, fire, and EMT reports, budget analysis, personal financial advisement, nursing, multimedia and software development, graphic design, consequences of financial risk, journalism, interior design, public relations, civil and environmental engineering and consulting, map creation, surveying, social work, clinical and laboratory technical work, economics, mediation, airline piloting, and conservation science.

Transferring to a Four-Year College or University

For students transferring to a four-year university from an Associate’s degree program, or for those merely looking for a change of school, it is essential that credits are transferred appropriately. Colleges and universities have academic advisers to aid students in these types of scenarios. Although not all credits are considered equal from one institution to another, many schools have suitable arrangements with one another in the event of a transfer.

Those looking to switch to a four-year school after completing an Associate’s degree should first take into consideration that universities have special requirements for an individual to be accepted as a student. Bachelor’s degree students who are switching schools should be aware that some of their credits may not be recognized for studies outside of standardized courses.

Online Bachelor’s Degree Programs

Some students may find that relocating for school is inconvenient for them due to other responsibilities or hindrances they may have, for example, transportation issues, family obligations, etc. The price of tuition also tends to play a role in a person determining whether they will continue with school. Fortunately, online schooling offers solutions to these issues.

Learning from home saves students commute, and is, less expensive than attending an on-campus facility, while still offering an extensive list of courses. Students with prior obligations and responsibilities also find online programs to be convenient, as the majority of online schooling is “self-paced”.

The around-the-clock access to assignments is another considerable appeal for many prospective online students. While most on-site educational facilities have a set block of hours for due dates and one-on-one student-professor time, an online educational experience allows a broader window for pupil-professor communication, as chat rooms and email are more readily available and utilized. Most online learning is geared around students’ unique daily schedules, although there are specific dates and times for some conferences and lecture

Online Learning Q&A

Must I be a nerd to use an online classroom program?

If you are reading this now, you have all the skills needed for online learning. In areas of video conferencing and such, technical and peer support are ready to assist.

What is the quality of online classes compared to on-campus ones?

Online schools employ professors from the campus college environment and receive specific accreditation. Researchers evaluate online schools to satisfy quality standards.

What happens to students who have to complete laboratories in addition to attending online lectures?

Online schools understand the reasons for distance learning. Laboratory work for the courses can be completed online or at a local site aligned with the college.

Is student aid available for online students?

Qualified students can be offered financial aid through schools with accreditation.

Will I miss the social aspects of a college education if I’m only online?

Sports games and pep rallies are not huge in online learning, but these aren’t activities you are paying for by learning online. As far as establishing peer connection, threads, chat rooms, video calling, emailing, photo sharing, and active online clubs have been responsible for many long-term friendships between online students.

Bachelor’s Degree College Accreditation

Colleges, universities, and online schools offering Bachelor’s degree programs pride themselves on receiving voluntary accreditation from researchers who specialize in analyzing the quality of their educational facilities. Accreditation agencies approved by the U.S. Department of Education, who are skilled in evaluating a school’s academic quality in comparison to national standards, complete college assessments. For example, the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) identifies over 20,000 accredited educational programs nationwide.

Entire colleges and individual programs are both subject to accreditation. Different departments can seek accreditation for their career-geared coursework. The United States Distance Learning Association and the Distance Learning Council are on the list of agencies from which online colleges typically seek accreditation.

In addition to regional accreditation, online schools look for specialized online accreditation. Students seeking online schools that offer financial assistance should research institutions with higher accreditation, as financial assistance programs tend to be more generous toward these colleges.