Finding a job with your distance learning degree
If you're considering a distance learning degree, and are wondering about job placement, you're not alone. Find out how distance learning degrees compare with traditional degrees when it comes to beginning a career.
The distance learning degree
The first thing to consider is your motivation for getting an online education. If it's simply for reasons of convenience and flexibility, that's not a problem. Make sure your academic record is solid so that your resume shows you're a desirable candidate. Perhaps you're already working but want extra certifications to broaden career possibilities.
The Distance Education Council (DEC) maintains standards for distance education, and has particularly detailed norms and guidelines for information technology education and management programs. Recognizing programs such as the National Open University (IGNOU) and state open universities, DEC lists currently valid, complete status and expired DEC recognitions on their website. The DEC aims to maintain quality standards through accreditation and assessment.
The Times of India reports that the DEC recommends checking institutional status before taking admission. Some programs may advertise an out of date approval status.
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With a legitimate distance education, in addition to other academic and professional qualifications, you may find that your resume is stronger and more appealing than it was before.
Jobs after distance learning
DEC-approved programs can lead to job placement just as a traditional degree can. Students from traditional programs should make sure that programs are accredited by the appropriate institution or council just as distance education students do.
Hiring decisions are influenced by a candidate's ability to discuss his or her fit with the prospective employer, past work experience, apparent energy and enthusiasm, communication skills, personality and other factors. Be prepared to discuss in depth what you have learned through your degree program and how you anticipate applying it to a paid position.
Depending on what field you're in, a distance learning degree may not differ significantly from a traditional one. Even in fields where practical experience is valued or often required during the degree, employers might not find an online education a drawback. On-the-job training is sometimes desired by prospective employers.
Find out if your field is suited to a distance learning degree - this mode can give you convenience and flexibility in an independent learning environment. Traditional degrees don't have to be the only option to find your career of choice: you may be able to earn certifications online to get ahead in the job market. If your field is well suited to distance learning, consider how it could affect your job prospects.