6 Tips to Get Back on Track with Online Colleges and Universities Part 2

How’d You Get Here?

If you started college, only to leave before successfully completing your degree, you aren’t alone. The truth is, only about 40% of individuals have obtained either an associates or bachelors degree by their mid-twenties. Roughly another 10% have earned a certificate. Only 56% of those enrolling in a four-year college attain a bachelors degree after six years, and less than 30% of those who enroll in community college succeed in obtaining an associates degree within three years.7

There is also a growing gender divide as well: Men represent just 43% of enrollment in our nation’s colleges. Women, on the other hand, account for 57% of these undergraduate degrees. Furthermore, women who recognize the power of a higher education account for 60% of the nation’s graduate students.8

Some of the common reasons students don’t finish college are:

  • Financial pressure
  • Competing claims of family and jobs
  • Under-preparation for required academic work.9

Sound familiar? You no longer have to remain stuck in the status quo. There are a variety of paths to take to obtain your college degree that weren’t available before the advent of online education. With online college classes, you have the freedom to take courses when and wherever you want; to navigate your college education on your own terms.

Where Do You Go from Here?: 6 Tips To Keep You Moving Forward with a College Education

One of the best ways to approach college, even if you abandoned your first attempt at higher education, is to break down the college process into a series of parts. Taken by itself, each part is specific and doable. Here they are, in the form of 6 tips you can follow to keep moving forward.

Tip 1: Assess your career aspirations. Knowing where you want to be allows you to make a specific plan. The more specific your plan, the easier it is to break it down into specific steps. For example, are you interested in switching careers into areas such as health care or business? Or perhaps you just need to fill in a few credits here or there to complete your degree in your current field.

Tip 2: Determine what kind of post-secondary education is necessary to get hired in that field -- and to make you stand out from the pack. For some careers, taking college courses leading to a professional certificate may be sufficient; for others, an associates degree may be required; for others still, a bachelors degree may be mandatory.

7 IBID, p. 6

8 IBID, p. 13

9 Harvard Graduate School of Education, Pathways to Prosperity: Meeting the Challenge of Preparing Young Americans for the 21st Century, 2/2011, p.10