We have all been impacted in some way, shape or form by the down economy over the past few years, whether directly or indirectly. For many this economic struggle created some relatively big changes in people’s lives, in either their career, home, lifestyle, or even education. While it can be hard to see the positives during these times, there are a number of people who took advantage and advanced their education.
The effect of the down economy on education can be attributed to a few issues, including the lack of available jobs, which encouraged people to consider going back to school, as well as people who were actively holding jobs deciding to advance their education, hoping to help them advance within their current careers. However, pursuing a degree while still holding a job or actively seeking a job can be a challenge, which is why there is such great appeal around earning online degrees. Online degree programs offer a level of flexibility that many students who are mid-career demand, as they balance a life of work, family, other commitments, and now trying to add college.
The appeal to earning a higher education online has been growing in popularity due to the convenience it offers its students, the various classes offered, as well as the potential opportunities that a higher degree can offer while mid-career. Many colleges and universities offer online education programs including degrees and post-baccalaureate certificates in a wide range of disciplines, including an RN to BSN degree, accounting degree, or even an accounting certificate, just to name a few. These are focuses of higher learning that many people may not realize are available in an online format for adult students. But due to the growing interest in pursuing higher learning mid-career, and the associated demand for online college opportunities, more and more people are becoming aware of what online degree and certificate programs can offer, and making the decision to go back to college.
Online enrollment continues to grow in 2011, with little sign of slowing down according to recent data in a Straighter Line report. The growth rate in online enrollment is at 21%, according to this report, as now more than 1 in 4 higher education students take at least one online course. These numbers have continued to rise over the past few years.
The increasing demand for online education is changing the way colleges are offering courses. As this trend continues, we can expect more and more colleges and college programs catering to the growing online demand.