When considering to study software engineering, here are 5 reasons for choosing an online software engineering degree over attending a traditional university.
As every industry continues to rely on technology and the combination of software and hardware to make businesses run more efficiently, software engineers are in high demand. At the same time, online universities are gaining popularity and recognition globally as they offer students from around the world access to affordable and quality education. That’s why choosing an online software engineering degree is a solid choice to open career prospects, increase earning potential, and put you in a position to have a rewarding career.
While there are many opportunities to earn a degree to be a software engineer at a traditional university, here are 5 reasons why an online software engineering degree can potentially benefit you more.
1. Job Prospects
First things first, what do software engineers do and why are they so important? In general, software engineers design, conduct, test, and maintain computer systems and software to meet the needs of the user. In today’s day and age, the users are all types of individual entrepreneurs and small and large businesses alike that use technology to stay connected and run their business. From healthcare to education, logistics and retail, virtually every industry relies on software engineers to ensure their productivity remains efficient and secure.
Because of the continued reliance on technology, the job prospects for software engineers continues to increase. In fact, by 2026, the job prospects for software engineers is expected to grow by 24%, which is much faster than average.
In earning an online software engineering degree, you can be rest assured that there will be great employment prospects upon graduation.
Online degree programs offer something traditional universities logistically cannot, and that’s flexibility. While traditional universities are constrained by their schedules based around professors’ time and classroom availability, online universities solely require an internet connection to attend classes and take tests. This means that you can set your own schedule, work at your own pace, and learn the same information without sacrificing your time.
For example, if you have a family or have to maintain a job while you study, you can work around those schedules and set up your schooltime in what would have been considered “free time.”
Take it from a student, Farzad Karimi who studied Computer Science at University of the People who says, “Two major obstacles were the hardship for me in the past, tuition fees and time limitation. UoPeople is tuition-free and is online, so I could manage to study when I was working simultaneously.“
3. Lower Costs
In the same vein as the point before, online universities don’t have to maintain costs for physical campuses and recreational additions. Therefore, they are usually more affordable than their traditional counterparts.
Furthermore, there are completely tuition-free programs like University of the People, which is an accredited online university that believes education is a fundamental human right. With the ability to access the program from anywhere with an internet connection and only pay the minimal testing fees, the University is revolutionizing education for all.
Regardless of the online program you choose, you also benefit from not having commuting costs, like gas, a car, public transportation, or parking fees. Also, since the courses are online, books are typically digital too, and therefore much less expensive than they would otherwise cost.
4. Less Time and More Focus
With online programs and the ability to access them from anywhere anytime, you can potentially free up more time in your day. For example, you don’t have to waste time commuting, which means that time could actually be spent “in class,” studying, or reading.
Additionally, not all people are fond of the traditional classroom setting. There are usually students who either demand a lot of the professor’s attention or are disruptive to their peers. In an online classroom setting, you can learn in the environment that is best for you, both physically and mentally, without sacrificing peer-to-peer interaction and the professor’s attention.
It’s the perfect win-win for everyone because you can learn in whatever way is most conducive to your style while still having access to the professor and peers when you want to be in contact.
5. Transferable Skills
Like all universities, online universities teach skills that are highly transferable to many jobs or even becoming a freelancer. Perhaps the most noticeable is time management, because as previously mentioned, you have to devise your own schedule and stay on track so you don’t fall behind.
Having to be able to manage your own time with the flexibility of the program will either directly or indirectly help you learn time management skills. While everyone approaches their days differently, a useful tip is to break your schedule down into blocks of an hour or less to lay out how you’ll spend the time. If that’s too granular, you can always pick the days of the week you’ll dedicate to study versus the ones you’ll get work done or read for class. In this way, you can manage your schedule to make time for family, friends, fun, exercise, and whatever else you have to get down aside from school.
With these time management and self-starter skills, you will become a better employee or entrepreneur. While time is something that connects everyone on an equal playing field, it’s what you do with it that can set you apart!
How to Get Started
If you agree that an online software engineering degree is the right path for you, you’ll likely want to start with researching your options.
The most important consideration is to make sure that the program is accredited, which means it’s been vetted by a third-party and has proven it delivers what it promises to in terms of education.
Here’s an abbreviated list of some of the best online programs to study software engineering, plus their tuition per credit hour:
- Western Governors University – $240
- Brigham Young University – $163
- Kennesaw State University – $277
- Arizona State University – $633
- Southern New Hampshire University – $320
To see the complete list, click here.
Each university has their own set of requirements. For example, at University of the People, to apply for a Bachelor’s in Computer Science, you must prove you’ve completed high school and are proficient in English.
Regardless of the course you choose to enroll in, be sure to check out the following aspects before making your decision:
- Accreditation status
- Cost per credit hour
- Additional fees
- Admission requirements
- Program requirements and length
- Academic leadership
- Corporate partners
- Scholarship and financial aid benefits
Now, it’s time for you to make the next first step!
Studying an online software engineering degree will afford you many great opportunities in your future, and it all begins with enrollment.