Let us help. Here’s a short checklist to help determine if you are on the path to a smart degree:
- You are able to take advantage of low-cost online college courses to earn credit for the general education courses required for your degree.
- You have access to qualified academic support, such as mentors, student advisors, tutors, and academic success coaches.
- You are treated like a real person, and not just another consumer in a “student marketplace.”
- Your degree program accept transfer credits, including ACE CREDIT recommendations.
- You are able to easily take advantage of scholarships designed specifically for adult learners.
- You able to pursue a degree in a growing field that puts you on a path to a realistic, rewarding, and financially stable career.
If you are confident that your degree program offers all the college savings opportunities above, chances are you are on the path to smart degree. If not, it may be time to rethink your degree path.
What is a Smart Degree?
A smart degree is one that helps you achieve your academic and career goals efficiently and cost effectively - without leaving you with a mountain of student loan debt after graduation. A smart degree helps you make the right choices – and puts you directly on the pathway to an affordable college degree.
The Path to a Smart Degree
The path to a smart degree starts with knowing your goals. Many students find it useful to take online career aptitude tests and education assessments in addition to working with a student advisor. Before enrolling in college, it’s important to get the help you need to define your career goals, be realistic about any strengths and weaknesses – and identify any academic gaps you may have.
If you are looking to earn a smart degree, start here:
1- Get A Smart Degree Plan
Talk to one of our Advisors about your career goals, any previously earned credits, and the school(s) you are interested in attending. Your Student Advisor will help you make the right decisions.
2- Complete Low-Cost General Education Courses Online
Take your general education and elective courses through StraighterLine for just $99/month with courses starting as low as $49. Low-cost courses are a critical component to a smart degree!
3- Evaluate Partner College Scholarships
StraighterLine Partner College Scholarships can help make your college degree up to 50% more affordable.
4. Enroll in a Partner College
All approved courses are guaranteed to transfer for credit to our partner colleges.
5. Complete Your Degree Program
Finish your remaining courses at our partner colleges.
6. Get Your Smart Degree
You will graduate and receive your diploma from our partner colleges.
Online Support for Your Degree - Free College Advice That Really Helps
When you are considering going back to college to earn a smart degree, it’s critical to get the type of unbiased support that can help you achieve your goals.
Your college-based support system should include the following:
- Student Advisors: Provide help to get you through challenges big and small, and can provide you with the confidence that you are making smart choices around your education. Student Advisors are the mentors you will turn to if you have any questions about degree completion, which classes to sign up for, technical difficulties, course requirements, course transfer issues, getting your transcripts, or just general questions about how your degree program works.
- Enrollment Counselors: Provide help so you can easily navigate the nuts and bolts of enrolling in a college course or degree program. Their expertise range from paying for college, admission requirements, and what forms to fill out when.
- Success Coaches or Academic Advisors: Will help you choose the right courses for your degree, walk you through course related issues, and mentor you through work-life and academic challenges.
- Tutors: Work with you one-on-one through specific homework challenges, and provide you the academic assistance to get “unstuck” and move on.
Your Smart Degree… or a Mountain of Student Loan Debt
With the cost of college so high these days, it’s particularly important keep your college expenses low. The average student graduates with student loan debt of over $33,000. With a smart degree, you can avoid the student debt trap.
Our First Year bundle, allows you to take ten 3- and 4-credit courses and pay only $1,299 for one full year of college. This allows you to save thousands on you way to earning a smart degree. Compare our rates to the average published college tuition and fees rates for undergraduates for 2013-2014 (according to The College Board):
- Public 2-Year (In-State): $3,264
- Public 4-Year (In-State): $8,893
- Private Nonprofit 4-Year: $30,094
- For-Profit: $15,130
The Right Choices for Your Smart Degree
With self-paced online college courses, you can trim a semester or more off the time it takes you to earn your smart degree. Students who complete just 2 StraighterLine courses each summer, can graduate from college a semester early.
Many students also take StraighterLine online college courses while in high school to start working on a smart degree before even starting college!
Accelerate Your Smart Degree with StraighterLine
When StraighterLine students transfer their credits to a college or university to earn their degree, their diploma looks exactly like all the other diplomas that school confers. But because they completed high quality, self-paced online college courses from StraighterLine first, our students pay less for their college degrees and usually get them quicker.
Are you ready to get on the fast track to you smart degree? StraighterLine can help.