I miss school
July 30, 2008 6:49 AM   Subscribe

Are there any reputable online degrees? I'm mostly interested in doing an online degree in web design or marketing/advertising. I already have traditional B.A. and M.A. degrees in a different field (international affairs and economics).

The online degree therefore would not constitute an integral part of my CV but would be an addition. I am looking for programs where I would genuinely learn as opposed to obtaining a piece of paper (diploma). Can you recommend any schools or programs in particular? Are there any recognized rankings of online degrees?
posted by barrakuda to Education (12 answers total) 14 users marked this as a favorite
Open University. The largest academic institution in the UK, students from all over the world are welcomed.
posted by fire&wings at 7:01 AM on July 30, 2008

The thing about "online degrees" is that it isn't just University of Phoenix-type places granting them anymore. MANY state universities are now granting them right along side regular degrees.

So your first step should be to look at a U.S. state that you are' in-state' for if at all possible. (Although it looks like you are in Germany) but that you are American.
posted by k8t at 7:01 AM on July 30, 2008

Degreeinfo.com is a great place to start. The key is 1) make sure the school is regionally accredited, 2) make sure the online program is the same curriculum and faculty as the classroom program, and 3) make sure you have the self-discipline and motivation on-line learning requires.
posted by hworth at 7:14 AM on July 30, 2008

Seconding Open. I've been doing Maths with them for the last few years and it's hard but good; you really do have to put in the effort, and you really do learn as a result. Their qualifications are recognised as being as worthwhile as the bricks-and-mortar institutions - probably not top 10 in the UK but definitely close - and they only do distance learning so are very good at it. You can just do individual modules, too, if you want to pick up some credits but not do a whole degree.
posted by handee at 8:06 AM on July 30, 2008

Definitely look into the type of accreditation. I have heard good things about Capella University (in fact, I applied for a job there recently), and they appear to have a few degree programs that are up your alley.
posted by antonymous at 8:32 AM on July 30, 2008

Thirding the OU. I took the Certificate in Web Applications Development as a part of my degree. You could combine this with something from the Business and Management side (several marketing modules there). You can basically follow almost any interests that you have, building to an 'Open' degree, or you can do a more traditional, subject-specific degree like this where you choice of courses is partly decided for you.
posted by boosh at 8:43 AM on July 30, 2008

Previously. The quality of online education has been debated a lot around here (short version: it varies). Lots of brick and mortar schools are offering more distance learning, night/weekend courses, etc. to compete with the growing online market so don't neglect to investigate that avenue as well.
posted by nanojath at 9:43 AM on July 30, 2008

ITunes has interesting classes, lectures, and podcasts available for free in its ITunes U section. They are not part of any online degree programs, but are good reference for sorting out which academic subjects may/may not be interesting at the college and above level.
posted by doppleradar at 10:16 AM on July 30, 2008

I got my MSEE from the Illinois Institute of Technology taking all distance learning classes. My brother got his Master's in Engineering Management from Old Dominion while he was stationed on a submarine, so it's definately possible to do and find programs that will work with you.

Accredidation of the program is important. So is figuring out how the distance program deals with proctoring any tests. Finally, finding a local school that you have the option to occasionally show up in person is a good idea for things that just don't work out online.
posted by garlic at 3:45 PM on July 30, 2008

I'm not entirely sure if they do their courses online, but the University of Southern Queensland is known for being a leader in distance education.
posted by divabat at 11:36 PM on July 30, 2008

ah bugger, I've done the borked link thing. http://usq.edu.au should work.
posted by divabat at 11:37 PM on July 30, 2008

Harvard Extension School lets you complete a certificate in IT completely online.
posted by lsemel at 10:48 PM on August 2, 2008

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