The Rise of Online Colleges and Online Education
The 2002 American Community Survey, taken by the US Census Bureau, indicated that 52.7 percent of the American population has some sort of college education; however, only 27.2 percent of Americans actually continue their education long enough to obtain a college degree. These numbers seems pretty dismal when compared with countries like Finland and the Netherlands where the percentage of people with college degrees range from 34 to 40 percent. Fortunately, the number of people taking online classes continues to rise, increasing the percentage of people working towards obtaining a degree. When you take into consideration the benefits online classes offer it's easy to see why the popularity of online education has grown immensely over the past few years.
Popularity of Online Degrees
Sloan Consortium conducted surveys in 2004 and 2005 to gage just how popular online college degree programs were. The survey indicated that the popularity of online degree programs grew vastly over just a year's time. In 2004, it was reported that over 2.5 million people were pursuing online degrees. That number increased by more than 800,000 people in 2005, when nearly 3.2 million students were reported by various online colleges.
The reason online college programs are so popular is simple. They are more convenient. The flexibility of the classes attract people who lead hectic lifestyles. Those who have a family and work full-time jobs now have the ability to pursue a higher education at their own pace. They can work all day, spend time with their families in the evening and still study at night after the kids have gone to bed.
Online Colleges vs. Traditional Colleges
It wasn't long ago that employers considered a degree from a traditional college superior to that of an online college. However, the Internet provided the opportunity for people to get an education from home and it wasn't long before traditional colleges picked up on the high demand. Now, it's not just online colleges that offer degree programs over the Internet; most colleges have programs and classes that you can take solely online. The wide acceptance of the general population and the fact that most colleges have implemented online programs, forced businesses to think otherwise.Continued on the next page