Online degrees are more accepted than ever

Posted October 13, 2011, by Josie Chun

A recent Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) poll has found that online qualifications are becoming increasingly common and increasingly accepted by employers.

The SHRM poll found that 87 per cent of surveyed employers agree or strongly agree that online degrees are viewed more favourably today than five years ago. More than one third of organisations view job candidates with online degrees just as favourably as those with traditional (bricks-and-mortar) degrees, and more than one half say that if two job applicants with the same job experience were applying for a job, it would not make a difference if their degree was obtained online or on campus.

Not surprisingly given these findings, 79 per cent of organisations indicated that they had hired a job applicant with an online degree in the last 12 months.

Online qualifications are considered particularly acceptable for entry-level positions (for example, assistant and coordinator positions), with 83 per cent of employers viewing online credentials as perfectly acceptable. Even for mid-level (analyst or specialist) positions, online qualifications are acceptable for 56 per cent of employers, and somewhat acceptable for 35 per cent. For management-level positions they are considered acceptable by 39 per cent and somewhat acceptable by 37 per cent.

Employers themselves are also going online for staff training and development.
According to the Australian Flexible Learning Framework’s 2010 E-learning Benchmarking Survey of 800 employers, 50 per cent of Australian organisations use e-learning as part of the training they provide to their employees.

The majority of employers believe that e-learning increases people’s access to training (88 per cent) and is an efficient way for people to undertake training (75 per cent). Sixty per cent of employers said they expect their organisation’s use of e-learning for employee training to increase in the next two years.

Josie Chun

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