Many online universities are offering certification for careers in medicine, laboratory science, and technology.. Some careers require uniform training in a specific set of skills and knowledge, without which, a person would not be able to perform that set of skills legally. The medical field is one area where there are many positions which require certification by a state-approved institutions.
In positions where certification is not mandatory in order to practice, an individual that holds a certificate will earn a higher salary than those that do not. Many certificate programs require continued education in order to maintain active certification over time. The individual earns the certification by completing a course and/or a comprehensive test. Most certification programs are so specialized that they only focus on one area, so individuals can earn their certification in a significantly shorter period of time than it takes to pursue a degree.
There are a wide variety of certifications that can be earned online. Schools like the University of Phoenix, Kaplan University, and DeVry University provide a range of options for students to choose from. There are Internet-based natural health colleges that offer certifications for a Master Herbalist, while other online colleges provide certifications for specific job placement like Wireless Communications and Medical Transcriptionist.
Many of these certification courses will only take a short time to complete, but others require a series of certification completions. For example, the Clayton College of Natural Health requires that in order to become a Master Herbalist, individuals must first complete the Family Herbalist and Consulting Herbalist certifications.
Some of the most popular online certifications offered through accredited universities include the Risk Management Certificate, Crime Scene Technician Certificate, and several computer program certifications (Microsoft Office, Computer Programming, Technology Specialist, etc.).
Certifications like the Risk Management program are usually acquired because of career demands. Those that are in upper management are oftentimes required to become certified in different areas of business in order to receive raises or promotions.
Fees can range anywhere from the normal cost of a single undergraduate course ($150-$550) up to around $3,000. In some instances, employers will foot the bill for their employees to obtain a vital certificate to do their jobs. Those that charge a higher fee usually include several courses with supplemental materials and services. Unfortunately, most certification classes and programs do not fall under normal federal financial aid regulations. But, if an employer is not paying the cost of the certification, there are usually payment plans and sometimes scholarships for those in need. Some online universities will provide both a certification and Associates degree at the same time, which allows students to apply for all types of financial aid.
Classes are typically styled in a manner similar to regular online courses. Students can complete work at any time, as long as assignments (if any) are turned in by a due date and tests are completed as scheduled. However, some online certification courses require that a student be present at a certain time on a specific day so that there is virtual classroom experience. Some online universities will conduct webcam lectures for certification classes, while others will ask that all students be in the same chat room for a "Q and A" session. Whatever the course style, students need to find the appropriate one to fit their needs and lifestyle.
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