Gone are the days of students having to attend a brick and mortar college or university to obtain a higher degree. Online colleges and universities have emerged to offer potential degree seekers the option of taking online college courses, either to complement a more traditional degree or as a path for a full credential obtained via an accredited online college or university.
In fact, many traditional colleges have added online college courses in an effort to accommodate both traditional and non-traditional students who desire more flexible alternatives to traditional learning. The are a wide-array of colleges that offer online certificates, diplomas as well as higher degrees, from an associates degree all the way up to a Master's degree.
Of course, when you are working to complete an online degree using online college courses, you should keep in mind that there are certain degrees that will require that you take some campus coursework. For example, if you are in a biology program or something pertaining to a medical field, you will almost certainly need lab time on-campus. As you examine the various online college programs available to you should take into account several important factors, including accreditation, reputation, course availability, Instructor credentials and, of course, cost.
Equally important is finding resources that will help you complete your online college courses. When it comes to finding resources to help you excel in the online colleges courses, there are an enormous number of digital resources available to online students. If you have a college account or a local library you use access to them, you can make find a vast collection of journals, books and other resources available through JSTOR to ProQuest, MUSE.
Even without a university account, you can use free resources like Project Gutenberg. Project Gutenberg offers thousands of books on just about any subject you need to research. Another good resource that anyone can access is the Library of Congress database. One of its major resources is the American Memory archive of documents and photos from American history.
Additionally, there many websites that offer information to students looking for information of any given topic. These resources range from large research projects, such as the ones in physics underway by the Large Hadron Collider to government websites like the Department of Education. These sites often offer data to students who need up to date statics for a research paper in Education.
It's important, however, to be guided by your online instructor on credible verses credible resources. A good rule of thumb is to look for online sources that are either government or educational websites with addresses ending with . edu or . gov. These sites usually have better sources for their information, and often are the authors of that information.
Of courses, just because you're taking online college courses doesn't mean you can't make use of more traditional non-digital resources like your local library. Even though there is a great deal of information on the Internet, the majority of reliable information on most topics is found in printed books, journals, microfilm and microfiche.