What Is the Application Process for Enrolling in a Distance Learning Program?

Enrolling in a distance learning program usually involves the same application process as enrolling in an academic program with classes that meet on campus. Learn about the application process for a distance learning program below.

Application Process for Enrolling in a Distance Learning Program

The application process varies depending on the type of distance learning program to which you're applying. For example, you may only need to fill out an application form and provide credit card information. Sometimes, applying to an undergraduate, graduate, post-baccalaureate or graduate certificate degree program will be more complex.

Important Facts About Distance Learning

Common Courses Public administration, entomology, English, forest bio-materials, environmental technology and science, electrical and computer engineering, food science, history
Degree/Certificate Levels Certificate, undergraduate and graduate course levels
Prerequisites Most programs at the bachelor's level require a high school diploma or equivalent
Concentrations Design, arts, humanities, languages, law, mathematics, health and well-being, engineering, business management, computing

Undergraduate Degree Applications

Allow at least a month for the application process for an undergraduate degree; you may need more time if you have to take an aptitude test. You may also be required to write a personal essay as part of the application process, which can be time-consuming. The College Board website offers lots of information about preparing for and applying to college (www.collegeboard.org). Below is a brief summary of the application process for distance learning programs:

  1. Go to the website of the college of your choice, and try to find information about the application process
  2. Review the list of required items
  3. Fill out the application form (many schools now use the Common Application at www.commonapp.org)
  4. Pay the non-refundable application fee
  5. Request your high school and previous college transcripts (and send them directly to the school you are applying to)
  6. On the College Board website, schedule the test or report existing SAT, ACT or other aptitude test scores as prescribed by your chosen school
  7. Contact previous teachers, advisors and employers to ask for letters of recommendation

Graduate Degree or Certificate Applications

The application process for a graduate degree program is very similar to that for an undergraduate degree program. You will provide your bachelor's-level transcript and diploma, which must be from a properly accredited school. You may need GRE, GMAT or similar graduate admission test scores. Some programs may require work experience or a professional license in your field.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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