Are Online Colleges Accredited? What You Should Know About Online Degrees

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Online degrees have become increasingly popular, and these numbers tell the story:

A common question arises in a rapidly evolving higher education landscape: Are online colleges accredited? This is a crucial factor that should be considered when you are looking at online education.

In this article, we will explore the significance of accreditation, how institutions earn it, the different types, and why it is essential for a college to be accredited. Additionally, we discuss affordability and accreditation of online education at New Mexico State University Global Campus (NMSU Global Campus).

What Is an Accredited College?

Accreditation is the stamp of approval that signifies an educational institution meets specific standards of quality and excellence. But what does “accredited college” mean?

It means that the institution has undergone a rigorous evaluation process by accrediting bodies to ensure it provides a high-quality education. This process involves assessing various aspects, including:

  • Faculty qualifications
  • Curriculum
  • Facilities
  • Student support services

Earning accreditation is important as more degree programs shift toward online learning and more companies look to hire qualified candidates with a college degree.

To earn accreditation, an institution or college will conduct a self-study review, followed by a site visit from evaluators appointed by accrediting agencies. This ongoing process ensures that accredited colleges maintain high-quality standards for current and prospective students.

How Do Institutions Earn Accreditation?

As we said before, the journey to accreditation involves a thorough self-assessment by the institution and a subsequent site visit by evaluators. 

The information provided in the self-study is verified during the site visit, leading to a decision by the accrediting agency. It’s a continuous process, emphasizing the commitment of institutions to maintain excellence in learning.

Choosing an accredited program is vital. However, it’s equally important to note that the two main types of accreditation differ significantly.

Are there Different Types of Accreditation?

Yes, there are different types of accreditation. Regional and national accreditation are the main distinctions. 

Regional accreditation, granted by regional accrediting bodies, is generally more widely accepted and prestigious. On the other hand, national accreditation is often associated with specific types of institutions, such as vocational schools.

In addition to regional and national accreditation, institutions seek professional accreditations for program-level commitment to quality education.

Common in licensure-required disciplines like teaching and social work, attending an accredited program is often a prerequisite to practice legally. Noteworthy accrediting agencies include:

  • Council of the Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar (ABA)
  • APA Commission on Accreditation (APA-CoA)
  • Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
  • Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation or National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (CAEP/NCATE)
  • Council on Social Work Education Commission on Accreditation (CSWE)

Why Is It Important for a College to Have Accreditation?

Accreditation is a seal of quality and a commitment to maintaining that quality, showing that the institution meets recognized standards. The main benefits of accredited colleges include:

  • Simplified credit transfers between accredited institutions
  • Boosted employer recognition and employability
  • Access to federal financial aid and graduate school opportunities

Basically, accreditation means your education is high quality and respected, and your earned credits are transferable.

Affordable Online Colleges in New Mexico

Seeking a reputable and budget-friendly education is a priority for many students. Affordable online colleges like NMSU Global Campus understand the financial considerations of students and strive to offer competitive tuition rates.

NMSU Global Campus Accreditation

NMSU Global Campus is an accredited online institution holding regional accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission (HLC)

Students can be confident in the value of their education, knowing their degree is from an institution committed to academic excellence. The added commitment to affordability is also evident at NMSU Global Campus, making quality education accessible to a broad range of students. 

The flexibility of online courses, dedicated faculty, and robust student support services create a conducive environment for academic success. For that reason, you can find your degree program online and unlock a world of opportunities at NMSU Global Campus.

What NMSU Global Campus Offers to Students

At NMSU Global Campus, students can benefit from:

  • Renowned Faculty: Our faculty members bring a wealth of knowledge and real-world experience to the virtual classroom, ensuring a high-quality learning experience for our students.
  • 100% Online: Enjoy the flexibility of earning your degree online, allowing you to balance your education with other commitments such as work or family.
  • Affordable Tuition: NMSU Global Campus is committed to providing competitive tuition rates and making quality education more accessible.

What is an accredited school? It’s one that has met rigorous standards, ensuring the quality of the education. Ultimately, when contemplating online education, accreditation and affordability are paramount. NMSU Global Campus is a prime example, offering both affordability and a pathway to academic success through its accredited online programs.

About New Mexico State University Global Campus

A group of NMSU students sitting posing for the camera

At NMSU Global Campus, our mission is to help prepare the next generation of leaders. We focus on offering high-quality education that spans a multitude of disciplines and career pathways. Whether you’re seeking a degree or certification in teaching, science, engineering, healthcare, business, or others, we provide exciting opportunities that can help shape your future. 

NMSU Global Campus is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC), with specialized accreditation offered for some programs. We offer flexible, career-focused 100% online courses and degree options in New Mexico, across the nation, and around the globe. Start your journey with our accessible and affordable degree options.