Accredited Online Colleges
Applying to colleges and universities is a major step on the road to your future. It is important that you apply to accredited colleges or universities for your studies if you want to complete your program and walk away with a degree, diploma or other valid certification.
"Accredited" means that an institute is certified and meets the standards necessary to provide you with the credentials that you have been working so hard to earn. While this may seem obvious, there are many colleges and educational institutes that are not accredited. You might be wondering, "What happens if I didn't apply to any accredited colleges?" If you do not attend a college or university that has the power to issue you your degree or diploma, you typically have to write a board certification or other standardized test. That's right, yet another test!
Accredited online colleges and universities culminate each semester with an examination period where your skills are tested. All your grades are recorded and saved at the end of each semester and work toward your final, overall grade. Like non-accredited colleges, you must maintain a certain average to avoid being expelled from the program and you do have to complete tests outside of the examination periods. The major difference is seen at the end of the program, however many years or hours it sums up to, when you write your finals and have enough credits accumulated, along with a satisfactory average to graduate. Accredited online colleges graduate you and hand you your credentials. All other institutes require you to usually wait a period of time, register to write some-sort of board examination – and pay additional money for any associated testing costs.
Non-accredited colleges are common in areas of healthcare such as dental assisting, massage therapy or other such direct-entry occupations. The actual learning process is similar, although the learning curve may be significantly steeper. Many such institutes boast that "you could be in the work-force in as little as eight months!" but fail to mention that this is made possible through an accelerated program, which means much less time to learn the same amount of material.
Accredited colleges may not be for everyone, sometimes fast tracking via a non-accredited institute and paying additionally for certifications at the end is more suited to what you are looking for. However, if you are looking for an all-inclusive learning experience without the added hassle of separate credentialing – accredited colleges are for you.