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What to Look for in Your Online Program if You Work Full-Time

Published: January 15, 2018 | Updated: October 12, 2020

You’ve always considered going back to school to get additional career training, but you just can’t afford to stop working full-time. Now you don’t have to! Online programs allow you to work full-time, while you earn your certificate or degree. But you’ll want to make sure that the program you choose meets your unique needs. 

Does the Online Program Teach You Job Skills?

Some schools build their curriculum on academic theory. But if your aim is to further your career, you need to consider what skills you’ll need to get ahead—in practice. Choose a school that bases its programs on industry demand. Whether you want a business career or one in healthcare or IT, make sure the skills you’ll be taught are those that will be in demand now and in the future. Check out job postings for that management position you hope to attain. Is the company looking for critical thinking skills and an understanding of personnel training, management, evaluation, and customer service management? Make sure your business program covers all of those!

Does the Online Program Offer Flexible Schedules?

The reason you chose online is BECAUSE it’s flexible. But that doesn’t mean there won’t be assignments, projects, and tests with absolute due dates. On the other hand, synchronous learning may not fit into your full-time work schedule. That means you have to be in front of your screen at an exact time for lectures or group discussions. Asynchronous learning allows you to hit those lectures and forums when it’s right for you.

Will You Receive In-Person Support from Your Online Instructors?

Just because the course is taught through technology doesn’t mean you should only deal with computers. You want to be sure there are real live people behind the screen. At a minimum, the school should have plenty of technical support to help you out at set-up or when things go wrong. But you’ll also want academic support. Whether there are instructors, tutors, or peers, look for people with whom you can connect when you have questions and concerns. You’re too busy to waste valuable time just because there’s no one there to give you a few minutes of their time.


If you’re interested in an online program, check out all Charter College has to offer. We have a variety of certificate and degree programs especially designed for working adults like you. Fill out the form and we’ll be in touch to start answering your questions now.