Online Degrees in South Carolina
A 2009 report by the South Carolina Higher Education Study Committee lays out an action plan to boost the levels of educational attainment in the state. Two of the recommendations are to “develop a coordinated set of blended online/on-campus degree programs…” and also to “explore development of collaborative statewide graduate programs that would emphasize flexible learning, including extensive online coursework….” Finding new avenues to provide students the chance to achieve a college degree may increase the state’s prosperity and help fill future jobs. The Lumina Foundation, an independent foundation established to help increase the number of college graduates nationwide, reports that 56 percent of jobs in South Carolina will require some form of college credential by the year 2018.
Levels of Educational Attainment for South Carolina Adults (ages 25-64) in 2010
Percentage with Degree
Some college, no degree
Graduate or professional degree
Source: South Carolina, Lumina Foundation, 2012
As of 2010, nearly 22 percent of South Carolina’s adult population has earned some college credits but no degree. Online education might allow this demographic to return to school and complete their program of study, helping increase the state’s rate of educational attainment. The added flexibility and accessibility of online degree programs may also help working adults, parents and residents of rural areas obtain a higher learning education.
Online Associate Degrees - These programs provide students with career-focused training and usually take two years to complete. Earned credits are often transferable to four-year universities if more education is desired. For those looking to enter the workforce more quickly, an Associate of Science in Criminal Justice may give students an opportunity for entry-level careers in the justice system. The program covers philosophies of criminal law and the courts, as well as the purpose and function of jails and prisons, among other topics. Graduates of this program may be qualified to become security guards. According to the South Carolina Works Online Service (SCWOS) employment of security guards in South Carolina is expected to grow 19 percent from 2010 through 2020.
To browse schools offering online associate degree programs in South Carolina, click here.
Online Bachelor’s Degrees – This is typically a four-year program, and, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (bls.gov, 2012), can provide increased earning potential in comparison to those with an associate degree. Bachelor’s programs may also offer a more well-rounded education than their associate counterparts. A bachelor’s in economics, for example, may benefit individuals who wish to strengthen their ability to analyze patterns, work with numbers, and conduct research projects. Students learn to collect and analyze data to better understand and explain past economic shifts, or predict future ones. Courses may also have students evaluate labor economics by studying wage theory, income distribution, and unemployment numbers. Graduates of this program may qualify to become survey researchers, using their statistical training to analyze and explain information gathered by companies who wish to study public opinion or market fluctuations. The SCWOS estimates this occupation will grow by 23 percent statewide between 2010 and 2020.
To browse schools offering online bachelor’s degree programs in South Carolina, click here.
Online Master’s Degrees - Master’s programs typically take one to two years to complete, and may help graduates advance into management positions or transition into a new career altogether. Current teachers looking to move into administrative roles may benefit from a master’s in education administration degree. Students may learn how collaborating with teachers, parents and pupils helps create equal-opportunity learning within a community. They may also learn how to supervise large groups of teachers, implement state and national curriculum standards, and assess the quality of instruction in order to produce a valuable education.
To browse schools offering online master’s degree programs in South Carolina, click here.
Online Doctoral Programs – These programs can take up to six years to complete, with three years of coursework and three years to propose, research, and defend a thesis paper. Individuals typically pursue doctorates in order to become researchers or postsecondary teachers. They may also wish to expand their earning potential and responsibilities within their current careers. Those looking to become medical or clinical administrators may pursue a Ph.D. in Psychology. Courses may immerse students in advanced research methods and theories, as well as business concepts such as financial management and accounting processes of health centers. Individuals may also learn talent acquisition techniques, and motivational conventions to keep an organization as productive as possible.
To browse schools offering online doctoral degree programs in South Carolina, click here.
- The University of South Carolina (USC) has continuing education programs that offer a number of certificate options for working professionals. One fully-online program is designed to help students earn their Six Sigma certification, which is a set of tools and strategies that individuals can use to help improve product quality and customer satisfaction by minimizing variability in both manufacturing and business practices. USC offers both green and black belt versions of the certification. The Green Belt certificate trains students in the basics of the Define-Measure-Analyze-Improve-Control project methodology, and can normally be earned in one month. The Black Belt certificate focuses more on team structure and leadership, an understanding of direct and indirect costs, and project tracking and management. It can typically be earned in two months.
- Lander University offers two online bachelor’s programs for working professionals: a RN-to-BSN option for registered nurses and a bachelor’s degree completion program in criminal justice management. Requirements may vary on a case-by-case basis, but students interested in the criminal justice degree will generally need to have completed an associate program in a related topic and currently be employed in law enforcement. Each applicant is assigned a personal advisor in order to help with their transfer and transition to Lander, and may also be eligible for department and academic scholarships.
- Anderson University has a few bachelor’s and master’s programs available online, including a Bachelor of Human Services. Classes are conducted in an accelerated, eight-week format, and all coursework and curriculum can be accessed completely online. Prospective students need to have at least a high school diploma for acceptance. While an associate degree isn’t needed, individuals can transfer up to 64 credits towards the completion of this degree.
For more information on degree options, please browse through the online colleges below. A counselor will contact you to discuss specifics and answer any questions you may have.
AU Online, http://www.andersonuniversity.edu/auonline.aspx
Earnings and unemployment rates by educational attainment, Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2012, http://www.bls.gov/emp/ep_chart_001.htm
Lander University, http://www.lander.edu/default.aspx
Leveraging Higher Education for a Stronger South Carolina, Higher Education Study Committee, 2009,http://www.che.sc.gov/InfoCntr/HESC_Files/che_2169_Leverage_Report_web.pdf
Occupational Employment Projections, South Carolina Works Online Services, 2010-2020, https://jobs.scworks.org/analyzer/default.asp
South Carolina, Lumina Foundation, 2012, http://www.luminafoundation.org/state/south_carolina/
University of South Carolina, http://www.sc.edu/
Online Degree Programs in South CarolinaThis list also contains online schools that accept students from South Carolina.
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