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Julie that's awesome that you are so happy with your path!

Jilly that's great that you had so much fun immersing yourself in great biology classes!


Lisa Shea, Low Carb and Video Games Editor
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What I always think is that I can make suggestions to people or state my opinion about something but that I have to respect their decisions that they make for themselves. No one can know what the best program is for someone else nor when they have paid too much for it. My values are different from your values so I will choose a different program than you at a higher or lower cost depending on exactly what I want from the program. It is true that there may be another program that offers exactly what I want at a better price. However, if I spend time researching before making the decision and don't happen to come across such a program, that doesn't make my program choice any less valuable to me.
A free accredited program would be great in some ways but I would expect that many people would start and drop out of it and /or not put a lot of effort into it. That seems to be what people often do when they don't pay for something. It would probably disrupt the class interaction and positive atmosphere that had been or was in the process of being developed. So, as with everything in life, there are advantages and disadvantages and we can only choose what is most suitable for us at a given time.


Elizabeth Stuttard
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@Lisa, I don't think I did, and certainly am not now, trying to tell you what is best for you. I see most of what I've said to be offering the harder-to-find, less advertised information about substantially similar or better (from my perspective) programs at a lower cost. When I posted my 'recommendation' to you a while back, it was based on your precise and stated goals for your education. Further, I had not yet read your post about having made your decision and enrolling at Northeastern. I am glad you are happy with it, and I do not criticize their program or your choice to enroll in it one way or another. I do, however, believe that for many looking at online education money is a very big factor, and the for-profits are excellent advertisers, so offering options from well-reputed schools is perhaps a bit of a mission for me right now. @Julie, Absolutely! Other big factors are the student experience, quality of education (pragmatic value of the skill-set, etc.), learning style (pedagogical preferences), proximity, support, job placement abilities of the institution and community preferences (diversity, network, alumni involvement, etc.) Other students' experiences provide a good read of what your experience might be, and that is a big advantage to the for-profits. The communities of online learners in the schools I've referred to are certainly smaller and more varied, and thus more difficult to find. Outside that experience, I believe that a school's reputation is largely based on the quality of its educational offerings, and while no measure is perfect, I think that it is one of the most reliable indicators of whether you will be provided the best possible opportunity to get a solid, well-grounded and practical education that will translate effectively into the workplace, whatever that may be. And as I said above, cost is a factor for many of us. So again, they are not the only factors in choosing education, but they are the two biggest ones that I can use to assess ANY school while trying to avoid the influence of big money advertising campaigns.

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