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Going to School Online? How to Know Which Online University is Right for Your Family

If you will be attending school online, there are several things you should take into consideration before choosing a university. Attending school online is not only a commitment that affects the student, but it can also have a significant impact on the family as well. Attending online university classes can be time consuming and the rigorousness of online curriculum is just as rigorous as that of any brick-and-mortar university. Determining which online university is right for you can be a challenge. To simplify matters, here are five tips you must consider when determining which online university is right for your family.

Does the Online University Have a Good Reputation

One of the most common ways of investigating whether or not the online school you’re interested in has a good reputation is by reading online reviews. In particular, read reviews given by current or former students. Some online schools who are particularly proud of their reputation, such as Independence University, will provide a platform for their student’s to leave Independence University reviews that illuminate and inform prospective students.

Is It Accredited

Accreditation is a form of verification by an accrediting authority that confirms a university meets higher standards of providing education to the public. You want to attend an online university with solid academic credentials, but determining if a university is accredited, and whether or not their accrediting authority is legitimate, can be difficult information to ascertain. However, the U.S. Department of Education keeps a data base with a list of all valid accreditation authorities operating in the United States, and this is where you can begin your research. Completing this basic search before enrollment can save your family the burden of attending a university that is not well respected by potential employers.

Review the Curriculum

Ask questions and do some research on the curriculum that will be part of the courses you or your family member will be taking. Stop by the local library and checkout a few books on related topics and read through them. Determine if the course curriculum meets your needs or expectations. If not, continue your search, because it is very important that you are comfortable and confident in the education you are receiving.

Is Financial Assistance Available

Many families considering attendance at an online university are not only considering the functionality and freedom that online school provides, but many are also employed full-time, and are seeking higher education to improve their current financial situation. It may be important for you to find an online university that has reasonable tuition fees and financial aid.

Is Class Attendance Flexible

The attractiveness of attending online school is marked by its flexibility for students to attend classes and complete assignments at the students convenience or on a flexible schedule, which is usually not available to students at regular brick-and-mortar universities. However, some online schools also have a strict schedule for attending classes, therefore if you or your family member will be employed while attending school, it is imperative that you confirm that your class schedule will not conflict with your work and family schedule.

Once you have considered and completed the tips listed above, you will be ready to make the final decision regarding your selection of the online university that is right for your family. You can rest assured that your commitment to consider the tips above, will have great long-term benefits for your family, and you will be glad that you invested the time to do so.

Tim Esterdahl

Tim Esterdahl is the editor of IFCS blog. He is a married father of three and enjoys golf in his spare time.

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