Best Online Degrees to Fit Your Schedule


See how you could fit these flexible online degree programs into your busy life.

By Tony Moton    

Do you ever wish that you could be in two places at the same time?

For busy people who want to pursue their educational goals - on top of their already hectic lifestyles - this could be especially true.

Luckily, there is an option - though admittedly not for everyone - that could let you balance the demands of work, family, and school: online education.

Click to Find the Right Online Degree Program for You.

"Online education really allows you to save time and money, while enabling you to take part in the educational process in more ways," says Richard Garrett, a managing director at Eduventures, a Boston-based educational consulting firm. "You are able to individualize learning and instruction."

Check out these five online programs that could better adapt to busy schedules.

Online Degree #1 - Business

The clock never stops in the world of business, so why should time constraints slow down your career goals?

In an online bachelor's business program, you might have the opportunity to take flexible courses and interact with business students from around the world. Team-oriented assignments can also help give students an idea of what it's like to work under pressure, as well as how to run a company with people.

Business courses generally include economics, accounting, management, business law, and business communications, according to the College Board, an organization that administers academic aptitude tests.

Click to Find the Right Online Business Program.

Career options: An online bachelor's in business could help you prepare to pursue a career as a marketing research analyst, financial services sales agent, or management consultant, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

Online Degree # 2 - Criminal Justice

With flexible class schedules, "night owl" and "early bird" students alike could maintain their regular routine while earning an online bachelor's degree in criminal justice.

As an online criminal justice student, you could take advantage of the opportunity to study the ins and outs of the justice system when it's convenient for you. If you have other responsibilities like a day job, you could "attend" classes after the sun goes down.

Courses might include criminology, policing society, criminal-justice research methods, and statistics, according to the College Board.

Click to Find the Right Online Criminal Justice Program.

Career options: With a bachelor's in criminal justice, students could be prepared to pursue a career as a police officer, probation officer, detective, or criminal investigator, notes the U.S. Department of Labor.

Online Degree # 3 - Psychology

Although it can be difficult to fit education into a busy schedule, an online bachelor's program in psychology has the flexibility to help ease your mind while you study what makes people act the way they do.

As an online psychology student, you could have the opportunity to share and discuss research with classmates and professors when it's most convenient for you. Chat groups and discussion boards are communication tools that you can utilize around the clock.

Coursework in various areas of psychology - including social, cognitive, and developmental - could potentially help prepare you for a career in this dynamic field, according to the College Board.

Click to Find the Right Online Psychology Program.

Career options: Bachelor's in psychology grads could be prepared to pursue a career as a social worker or human resources specialist, notes the U.S. Department of Labor.

Online Degree # 4 - Education

Teaching in an increasingly high-tech world could require you to brush up on your computer skills.

By earning an online bachelor's degree in education, you'll learn ways to teach and communicate with today's tech-savvy students. And studying online is also beneficial because you could coordinate study time around your daily routine - particularly if you're transitioning from another career, or have other social and family obligations.

Education majors may take a variety of courses that could prepare them for work as mentors and academic leaders, including teaching methods, psychology of learning, and philosophy of education, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

Click to Find the Right Online Education Program.

Career options: With an online bachelor's degree in education, you could prepare to pursue a teaching career for kindergarten, elementary, middle or secondary schools. Note: after completing an education degree, the Department of Labor reports that it's required to obtain a license to be prepared to teach in public schools.

Online Degree # 5 - Nursing

Are you interested in a career where you can help others recover from sickness and regain their health?

When you enroll in an online associate's in nursing program, you could have an opportunity to take classes remotely and then apply what you learn during clinical exercises, where you generally practice the examination and treatment of patients in face-to-face settings, often in health care facilities.

Though most nursing programs generally include classroom instruction and supervised clinical experience, according to the U.S. Department of Labor, an online degree in nursing could allow you take a majority of your classes when it's most convenient for you.

Some common courses include adult nursing, anatomy, nutrition, microbiology, and psychology, according to the Department of Labor.

Click to Find the Right Online Nursing Program.

Career options: An online associate's degree in nursing could help you seek a career as a registered nurse, according to the Department.

Note: Online program courses and schedules will vary by school.

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