When I was in college, there were few accredited distance learning programs in the entire country, and attending one was often viewed like you were not really going to school in the first place. That has all changed in recent years.
A number of accredited distance learning programs have popped up around the country, and generally, people do not turn up their noses at them the way they once did. One of the most important developments is that employers don’t seem to care, either.
I suppose that it is only natural in an ever-shrinking world in which technology rules that more people would opt to learn from home rather than go to a college campus. A number of college campuses actually offer accredited distance learning options from their university, and numerous students take advantage of them.
My sister actually utilized two accredited distance learning programs, one in high school and the other in college, to complete her education. She went through a high school program that she could do from home, and while she took some classes at the university she attended, she did the bulk of her work from home in the distance learning courses.
I have a friend who took advantage of an accredited distance learning program for graduate school. She went to school on campus for her undergraduate work and wanted to further her education in her field of study. The university we attended did not have a graduate program in her field, so she applied for a distance program and was accepted.
Even though I took all of my courses at the university when I was in college, I never had a problem with people that took accredited distance learning classes because I knew how much work they put in and the discipline that they required.
That was the biggest problem for me I never would have stuck with an accredited distance learning program because, to me, it seemed to involve a larger work load than traditional college courses offered on campus, and I did not have the discipline to do my school work every day unless I was in the classroom.
The fact of the matter, though, is that they do work. Another friend of mine went through an accredited distance learning program, graduated, and went on to get a pretty good job for an established and respected company. She said her courses helped prepare her for the job, as well.
While accredited distance learning programs were never my cup of tea, I can understand why they would appeal to some people, and they are becoming more and more prevalent. I truly believe there will always be a need for the traditional college environment of classrooms and lectures, but I think that distance learning programs have their place, too.