After accreditation, consider the resources and services offered by the educational provider to their students. These may include:

  • Tutoring: Tutors should be available to students, either online through a discussion board or via email, to assist with confusing concepts or difficult coursework.
  • Online Library Services: A good online library is essential to effective research. Some schools offer some or all course material online, free or at a reduced cost in digital format. Library access should be easy, with resources accessible online or by email.
  • Academic Advising: Most schools offer academic advising services to their students. Academic advisors work with students to tailor each program’s curriculum to specific academic needs and busy professional schedules.
  • Career Services and Career Placement: Career placement resources are often available to current students and recent graduates. These range from counseling services that provide students with valuable information about the job market, resume-writing, and interviewing, to networking career placement assistance. Find out if these services are offered, and for how long after graduation.
  • Faculty: Teachers make an education. If possible, research the faculty of a particular institution before enrolling, through the schools themselves or through 3rd-party Web sites like Rate My Professor. Even if you cannot research individual members of the faculty, ask questions about instructor accessibility and qualifications. In many cases, instructors and students at online universities are geographically diverse working professionals, and students may be able to build a wide-reaching professional network.

A good online school should offer its students a reliable, high-quality support system from before enrollment through graduation, or beyond.