For many U.S. students, moving out of their parents’ homes and onto a college campus is an expensive rite of passage. But with the economic recovery stalling and the cost of higher education increasing, some colleges are promoting a less costly way to obtain a 4‑year or Master’s degree. One of the latest programs being marketed by for-profit colleges is the online study option.
The College Board reports that the average annual cost at a traditional 4‑year college is $20,000 by the time room, board, tuition and supplies are added up. In addition, the average student who graduates with a 4‑year degree has $25,000 in student debt. These numbers are forcing college-bound students to look for alternatives.
For many, the for-profit college route has been attractive, despite recent news reports about some of these students incurring high costs and experiencing higher loan default rates. To lighten the financial burden, institutions like Ashworth College are promoting their online programs. These schools maintain affordable tuition rates by offering online instruction only. Students are able to choose from a variety of online degree and certificate programs. Prospective students can also find programs for military education, high school diplomas and support for homeschoolers.
As the cost of higher education continues to rise, more academic institutions may market quality instructional programs for an affordable price. This change could bring about market pressure and drive more advertising from traditional institutions as well.[Source: Attending College Online Can Offer Relief From Rising Tuition and Lingering Education Loans. Ashworth College. 26 Jul. 2011. Web. 2 Aug. 2011]