How do I Choose the Best Marketing Distance Learning Program?

Dan Cavallari

Choosing the best marketing distance learning program starts with the decision as to what level of education you want to work toward. Associate's degrees, bachelor's degrees, and master's degrees are commonly available through marketing distance learning programs, so you should decide what level of education you want to obtain and what your budget will allow for. Find a program that is either taught by experienced and qualified instructors, or one that is taught in conjunction with an established marketing agency. The latter situation is rare, but worthwhile if you can find a marketing distance learning program that takes advantage of the expertise of an established marketing agency.

Asynchronous distance learning coursework can be completed at any time and in any setting.
Asynchronous distance learning coursework can be completed at any time and in any setting.

Be sure to choose a marketing distance learning program offered by an accredited institution. Attending a non-accredited institution may hinder your attractiveness as a job candidate, and it may make you ineligible for certain types of financial aid. Accredited schools have gone through the accreditation process conducted by an independent agency, and if the school has been granted accreditation, it has been determined that the school offers a high quality education that is recognized by employers and other educational institutions. Be sure to choose an accredited school to ensure you receive a high quality education and to enhance your chances of finding employment once you complete the marketing distance learning program.

Find out if the marketing distance learning programs you are considering offer internships at marketing agencies. This will allow you to gain valuable experience in the industry and increase the likelihood that you will find employment after completing the program. Some programs will require you to complete an internship or some other job practicum, so be sure to research specific requirement and keep in mind that such requirements may necessitate a trip to an on-site location. Internships very often cannot be completed online or in a distance learning capacity, but some programs may accommodate for distance learners.

Choose a program that combines knowledgeable staff with the most up to date distance learning methods. Some classes are taught via online message boards only, while others combine message boards with streaming media such as audio and video clips, podcasts, mp3 downloads, and interactive websites. Find out how each program you are considering delivers instruction and choose the one that suits your learning style the best. Also find out if classes are taught synchronously or asynchronously; synchronous classes are taught at a specific time, and all students must be online to meet with the professor, which means the students will get more direct communication with each other and the instructor. Asynchronous classes allow you to work at your own pace at any time of day, though you will have less direct contact with instructors and fellow students.

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