Cost Of A Masters Degree

Cost of a masters degree

Many students choose to pursue their degrees online for a number of reasons. For example, they may have to schedule their learning around a full-time job or family responsibilities. Some learners hope to avoid long commutes to campus or enjoy studying at home. Others choose online programs due to their relative affordability.

These guidelines will help you determine the true cost of online education. Below is a detailed list of distance learning tuition rates, technology and virtual access fees, and indirect costs associated with studying on campus, such as lost wages, room and board, and student service fees.

The decision to pursue online study is no different than that of any other educational program. Before making any final decisions, it’s imperative for students to consider the true cost of an online program, and whether or not it will benefit them in the future.”

Determining whether to enroll in a program online is a significant and personal decision. If your chosen program offers coursework or formal concentrations in your field of interest, is accredited, and is suitable for your learning style, make sure to consider these factors in addition to overall cost.

Overall cost is the obvious first consideration when comparing online programs, but it’s not the only one. In addition to determining the cost of tuition and other required fees, make sure to also consider if a program offers coursework or concentrations in the area of interest you desire and if the program has appropriate accreditation. What’s more is that you should also look into whether online education best fits your learning style.

What Are The Cost Of A Masters Degree?

Pursuing a degree online is a great alternative to the traditional on-campus route. You might be interested in this because you have a busy career, or live in a remote location. Both have costs that traditional students don’t have to consider.

Those who choose to pursue higher education through an online program vs. an on-campus program will quickly discover that the cost of higher education is significantly different when comparing these two options. The cost of obtaining a degree through an online program is typically lower than the cost of going through traditional channels, although this isn’t always true.

As an example, students who prefer classroom learning may need to leave their jobs or take fewer shifts in order to continue their education. Although studying online may enable them to continue to work, they may not be interrupted by their classes. Single parents and others who have family responsibilities can also avoid the costs of professional caregivers by choosing an online educational option, and studying from the comfort of their own homes.

Traditional and online programs have different costs. In an online program, the tuition rate of a class is often the only additional cost — most schools do not charge other fees for online courses like they do for on-campus ones. However, students sometimes pay fees to access course materials online.

For online students who don’t intend to take advantage of campus-based student services, such as access to recreation centers or healthcare options, there may be no associated fees. The primary reason for a difference in cost is simply that online students can complete their education without requiring the same level of infrastructure as a campus-based student. The costs associated with providing physical amenities such as coffee shops and libraries are significantly lower in an online program than on a campus.

Access to Recreation Facilities: Traditional program students who pay a fee for gym, pool, or other such facilities may not have to pay these fees if they are enrolled in an online program that does not offer the same access to campus-based student services.

“Students at public four-year colleges paid an average tuition of $8,800 in 2016 if they qualified for in-state tuition.”

If you are planning to attend a public college or university, make sure to check whether online students are eligible for in-state tuition at the institution. National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) reports that in 2016, students pursuing a degree at a public, four-year college paid an average of $8,800 if they qualified for in-state tuition. Out-of-state students, as well as online students who didn’t get in-state rates, spent on average more than $23,000.

The long-term value of your degree is also important. Employers nowadays are less likely to differentiate between candidates who earned their degrees online and those that earned them on campus. However, some online programs may not meet the same academic standards as in-person programs. While researching where to study, make sure your school holds either regional accreditation or national accreditation.

What Are the Direct Costs And Indirect Cost Of An Online Program?

Online degree programs offer several potential advantages over traditional campus-based learning models, including lower tuition costs and the ability to earn a degree without ever leaving home. Even so, indirect costs add substantial amounts to degree expenses as well. Also think about the cost of room and board, the cost of books and other course materials, and a possible decrease in income. However, when you take a closer look at the costs of online courses and degree programs, you’ll find that they can be just as expensive as traditional courses.

We’ll break these direct costs and indirect costs down in the next section.

How To Lower The Cost Of An Online Program

There are many different ways you can lower the total cost of pursuing a degree online. Whether you find yourself trying to pay for college directly, or paying for it through your taxes, finding ways to reduce the total cost of education is important.  Our list below details five of the most common ways to save money on distance education.

Scholarships For Online Students

Being an online student can take its toll on your wallet, so be sure to look into scholarships for online students if you need financial assistance. Luckily, there are many scholarships offered exclusively to online students and those pursuing distance learning degrees.

Additional to scholarships for online students, detailed below, you should contact your academic institution’s financial aid office to determine which institutional resources, including scholarship and grant opportunities, are readily available to distance learners. Also, check our detail guide on scholarship for computer science majors and business majors.

Are Online Programs Worth The Cost?

One of the biggest questions for older students who are considering an online degree is whether it’s worth the cost. Online programs have become more flexible, accessible, and prestigious over the past few years, and studies show that online students tend to do just as well as their peers on exams. Still, some doubt whether online degrees carry the same value as degrees earned through a traditional campus-based program.

You can find free classes online that will teach you a variety of subjects. But an increasing number of people are paying for online education in order to earn credit toward a degree. That could be a great option for you to pursue your goals and dreams, but it can also be costly so you should carefully think through the pros and cons before deciding whether an online program is worth the cost.

Regardless of whether you choose to study online or in person, choose a program that is accredited. A school cannot be accredited unless it meets certain standards and appropriately prepares you for a career in your field. Unaccredited programs may not provide you with a quality education, and future employers may not even recognize your degree. Financial aid opportunities can also be missed, resulting in you paying more for a poorer educational investment.