Affordably Accelerating the Completion of Undergraduate Courses: A StraighterLine Success Story

Beth Dumbauld

e5_student_jenniferJennifer Eversull is a woman on a mission. She has been working full-time as a parent counselor in the public health department for years, and was eager to complete her undergraduate degree. She knows what she’s after professionally, but also realizes she needs to earn her master’s degree to advance her career more rapidly. Jennifer is helping to change lives, and her education will help her have an even greater impact.

There was just one catch: The master’s degree program she was planning on attending had a quickly approaching June start date. It was already spring, and she needed 9 more credits to complete her bachelor’s degree at StraighterLine partner, University of Phoenix. The clock was ticking. She needed to complete her final three courses quickly.

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To Wait or Accelerate? The Difference a Year Makes

Jennifer had a decision to make. If she waited to complete her last 9 credits through her current degree program, she wouldn’t be be able to finish her final courses for another six months--and that would mean delaying enrollment in her master’s degree program.

She explains, “I needed to finish up my bachelor’s in criminal justice degree. The master’s program I was planning on enrolling in started in June, and I was hoping I could find a faster way to get the courses done in time.”

Jennifer didn’t want to wait another year. She was ready now.

Online Courses that Transfer to Accredited Colleges

Jennifer knew what she needed: a way to affordably accelerate the completion of her undergraduate courses, but she wasn’t sure where to start. More specifically, since she was already enrolled at University of Phoenix, she knew she would need to find online courses that would be guaranteed to transfer to accredited colleges for credit.

Fortunately, she found StraighterLine. Through her research, she discovered StraighterLine has partnerships with nearly 100 accredited colleges, including University of Phoenix. The course offerings also seemed like a perfect fit - including topics that she was personally and professionally interested in, such as Introduction to Nutrition, Business Ethics, and Criminal Justice, all of which are three-credit courses.

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No Waiting to Take a Class

Before enrolling in her StraighterLine courses, she gave her University of Phoenix advisor a call to verify whether the StraighterLine courses would meet the requirements she needed for graduation. Her advisor was able to quickly reassure her that the StraighterLine courses would indeed be accepted in transfer - and a relieved Jennifer quickly enrolled in her final three courses, with the goal of accelerating the completion of her undergraduate degree.

“I thought the cost of the courses were extremely fair in comparison to other classes!” said Jennifer. She added, “I also liked StraighterLine’s online proctoring. The integrity is there. You show that it is you taking the tests and quizzes. There’s no questioning who completed the course. There’s no waiting to take a class."

Graduating from University of Phoenix

For Jennifer, earning her bachelor’s degree “is a huge deal” and fulfills an extremely important educational and professional goal. She added, “I live in a very rural area and there are no colleges here. I had to make sure that the online school I graduated from was accredited.”

She was grateful that University of Phoenix offered 100% online degree programs in criminal justice, had flexible transfer credit policies, and that she was able to continue to work full-time.

Advice to Online Students

According to Jennifer, “The number one thing to be successful in an online course is time management.” She added, “Every course I took, I took for a purpose, and it pertained to my future.”

Jennifer graduated from University of Phoenix with her Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice Administration with a concentration in Human Services in April 2015. Thanks to StraighterLine, she was able to start her master’s degree program in June, and looks forward to graduating with her Master’s in Clinical Mental Health and Trauma in the spring of 2017. Congratulations Jennifer!

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