The 20 Easiest Online Certificate Degrees in 2021

Job experts agree that post-high school technical and vocational training pays! According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), each higher education level can result in more skills development. In turn, you can have better access to higher-paying occupations

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In 2019, people with a high school diploma had median weekly earnings of $746 and an unemployment rate of 3.7%. But people with some college but with no degree, such as with certificate training, enjoy higher median weekly earnings at $833 and a lower unemployment rate of 3.3%. Indeed, completing an online certificate program can make a significant difference in your life! 

Certificate programs are considered technical and vocational programs that neither confer a diploma or a degree but increase employment prospects. These are available at community colleges, technical and vocational schools, and in four-year colleges and universities, albeit to a limited degree. These can also be completed in 12 months or less, although there are also longer programs designed for advanced training in specific fields, such as healthcare. 

20 Easiest Online Certificate Degrees in 2021

M E T H O D O L O G Y

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We considered them based on the following criteria when choosing among the dozens of possible candidates for the list. 

  • The school’s accreditation is the first criterion considered because of its importance among educators and employers alike. The comprehensive vetting process means that the concerned institution meets, even exceeds, the accrediting agency’s rigorous standards.
  • The flexibility of the online certificate programs was also considered in light of their online delivery. Classes should ideally be delivered online, either asynchronously or synchronously. The internship and externship periods can only be conducted in a face-to-face manner.
  • The price in terms of tuition, fees, and incidental expenses was also important considering that students want to enjoy good value for the money. Many of these programs are offered in public and non-profit private schools with more affordable tuition and financial aid packages.
  • The school’s overall reputation in the community and its alumni was also a factor in the listing. We included the best possible examples of schools that you can check out later on. 

FAQs on Online Certificates

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What are the best reasons for getting a certificate online? 

People who have earned their technical and vocational certificates online point out the numerous benefits that come with it.  

  • The programs demand less of your money, time, and effort than, say, associate and bachelor’s degrees. You will spend fewer dollars on a certificate because of the shorter period and cheaper tuition. You may earn a certificate in less than a year and get viable employment soon after. 
  • The online courses can be accessed and completed mostly online. You will use online learning platforms, such as Blackboard and Canvas, and digital messaging tools like emails, chats, and video calls. You don’t need to spend time and money on transportation, too. Indeed, convenience and flexibility are the commonly cited reasons for the popularity of online certificate programs. 
  • The programs are recognized for their excellent training for aspiring workers, whether in the business or healthcare sector. While many occupations don’t require formal training and certification, most employers prefer these credentials. This isn’t surprising as formal training and certification are evidence of an individual’s competency for the job.  
  • There are few prerequisites for enrollment in certificate programs. The typical admission requirements include a high school diploma or its GED equivalent; standardized test scores and minimum GPAs aren’t necessary. 

What are the drawbacks of these programs that interested persons should be aware of? 

While there are few drawbacks, these are still worth noting. 

  • You must have consistent access to reliable, high-speed Internet if you want to be in an online certificate program. Otherwise, you won’t be able to participate well in the online classes and activities. 
  • You have to meet the demands of asynchronous online programs. If you’re uncomfortable with online interactions or you prefer face-to-face participation, then you should think twice.  

Who are the best candidates for online certificate programs? 

If you fall into one or two of these categories, then you’re an ideal candidate. 

  • You’re a new high school graduate or an adult learner who wants to acquire foundational training for a specific occupation. 
  • You want to start a new career path or boost your chances at career development, but you don’t have the time and money for higher education. 
  • You want to build your knowledge and skills in another area, but you can’t attend traditional training programs for one reason or another. 
  • Your current position can be made even better with a resume boost in the form of certificate training. 

Certificate programs are open to young and old learners alike, and therein lies its enduring appeal in a changing world. 

What are the typical requirements for a certificate?

Keep in mind that a certificate is a non-degree achievement. As such, its prerequisites for admission and requirements for completion are less strict than for degree-granting programs. The typical admission requirements include: 

  • A high school diploma or GED equivalent; 
  • Proof of age (must at least be 18 years old at the time of admission in all programs) 
  • Proof of residence (Some programs will only accept residents of the state where their schools are located) 

You may also be required to demonstrate certain competencies, such as in geometry, through examinations. 

What are the notable differences between certificate and diploma programs? 

Certificate programs are offered to persons interested in pursuing specialized technical and vocational fields. These include plumbing, automotive mechanics, healthcare occupations, and computers and IT jobs. These include less formal coursework since the emphasis is on hands-on training, including academic credits. The academic coursework includes 20-30 credits that can be earned in one year or less. 

Diploma programs are also similar to certificate programs in the sense that these are available for specialized technical and vocational fields. But there’s more formal coursework and practicum training, which means more academic credits to be earned (40-60 credits). The duration is also longer, from 12 to 24 months. 

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Certificate in Computers and Information Technology Programs

The certificate opens up a wide range of career opportunities in computers and information technology, from database analyst to software engineer. But it must also be emphasized that the certificate programs usually state the specialization that students will learn, such as network administrator, systems engineer, or web developer. 

The great thing about these programs is the faster-than-average growth in employment – 11% from 2019-2029 that translates to 531,200 new jobs. But not all jobs will experience impressive growth. The best jobs are in big data, cloud computing, and information security. The median annual wage was $91,250 in May 2020, an amount significantly greater than the median annual wage for all occupations ($41,950). 

University of California – Berkeley

Certificate in Semiconductor Technology Fundamentals

1995 University Ave., Suite 200 Berkeley, CA 94704-7000

extension@berkeley.edu

UJC Berkeley’s program takes longer to complete since it’s a six-semester program, but it’s among the most prestigious programs. Students learn semiconductor and integrated circuits fundamentals, microelectronics and microelectronic circuit theory, and other related topics. 

The program includes four required courses and a choice of three electives, which can be completed in 30-180 days. The rolling admissions mean online classes are delivered in an asynchronous format. There are no prerequisites, but familiarity with scientific terminology, math, and circuit theories are recommended. 

Accreditation: Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC)

Why choose this online school_

The program is known for its academic rigor and professional relevance to the current demands of the job market. If you’re looking for the best certificate program to kickstart your career in the semiconductor industry, then this is it! 

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University of West Florida

Technology Systems Support Certificate

11000 University Pkwy, Pensacola, FL 32514

(850) 474-2000

Graduates can apply for positions as instructional systems support, telecommunications, and network specialists. The 18-credit program includes web presence deployment strategies, technology infrastructure analysis and recommendation, and technology systems operations. The asynchronous coursework, which includes five courses, can be completed in 2-4 semesters, depending on your course load. 

Students will succeed if they have basic computer skills and learn university-level lessons necessary for earning their TSS certificate. 

Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS).

Why choose this online school_

The graduate outcomes are among the best in the field! Graduates can either apply for entry-level positions with their TSS certificate or proceed to an AA or AAS degree that meets the State of Florida Career Service Classification Plan. Many also choose to pursue both a job and a higher degree. 

Certificate in Carpentry Programs 

Students learn the knowledge and skills to become qualified for entry-level carpentry jobs. The coursework emphasizes the proper use of tools, basic construction practices, and job site safety. The courses include blueprint reading, estimating materials and costs, framing and interior finishing, and basic math for carpentry purposes. 

Depending on the program, graduates can work in general carpentry or take on specialized roles like finishing or framing carpenter. Students may also consider other jobs like cabinet maker, building superintendent, and construction foreman, which require more training and on-the-job experience. Apprenticeship programs are also available for aspiring certified journeymen. 

Carpentry is an attractive occupation with a median annual wage of $49,520 in May 2020 and good overall job prospects. 

Penn Foster Career School

Construction Trades Course

925 Oak Street, Scranton, PA 18515 USA

1-800-275-4410

Students are provided with appropriate training for entry-level jobs in the light commercial and residential construction sector. Their training combines online classroom discussions and practical hands-on exercises with apprenticeship opportunities. The combination results in graduates who are well-prepared for the demands of the real world, from planning projects to assessing their progress. 

Graduates can: 

  • Produce and interpret blueprints, drafts, and architectural drawings 
  • Create carpentry works according to specifications 
  • Solve problems in the workplace 

Accreditation: Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC)

Why choose this online school_

Students benefit from the mobile-friendly coursework, virtual simulation, and hands-on experience provided by the instructors. Employers also recognize Penn Foster’s excellent reputation.  

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Montgomery College

Carpentry Certificate

51 Mannakee Street, Rockville, MD 20850

(240) 567-5000

Students have the choice to apply their carpentry certificate as general carpenters or apply the credits earned toward an associate degree in building trades technology. The certificate is proof that its holder has the knowledge and skills for employment in the construction industry, and many graduates also use it for career advancement. 

The 21-credit program includes courses like Introduction to the Building Trades, Fundamentals of Carpentry and Advanced Framing, and Exterior Finishing. There are academic coursework and hands-on practical training sessions, too. 

Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE)

Why choose this online school_

The program outcomes include graduates being able to apply basic and intermediate carpentry skills, work effectively in a team, and describe the construction process to clients and supervisors. 

Certificate in Personal Care Assistant Programs 

Personal care aides (PCA) care for people with chronic illnesses and disabilities, typically with their daily living activities and non-medical needs. Their workplaces include residential homes, hospitals, and hospices where the elderly live. Their median annual wage of $27,080 in May 2020 may be on the lower end, but their job growth – 34% from 2019 to 2029 – is quite impressive. 

Interested individuals will find plenty of PCA certificate programs in all types of educational institutions. Students undertake intensive coursework, including first aid, medical terminology and infection control, and complete a clinical internship. The latter provides face-to-face contact with patients and healthcare professionals. 

Graduates may apply for certification through the National Association for Home Care and Hospice. 

University of Arkansas

Personal Care Assistant Certificate Program

Global Campus – Bentonville 700 SE 5th Street, Bentonville, AR 72712

(855) 402-3300

Students must complete several modules as part of their training. These modules include The Residential Care Environment, Homemaking, and Safety Skills, and Basic Care Skills. Since PCAs deal with people with special needs, the curriculum also includes modules about Skills for Special Populations and Advanced Care Skills.

A clinical externship is also part of the program wherein students gain valuable hands-on practical experience. The academic and externship work enables students to be competent in PCA-related work, from basic housekeeping to advanced care. 

Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission (HLC) 

Why choose this online school_

Graduates can sit for the National Healthcareer Association (NHA) certification programs. But even without the certification, their job prospects are high considering UA’s excellent reputation. 

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US Career Institute

Personal Care Assistant Program

Lowe Street, Fort Collins, CO 80525

1-866-250-6851

The US Career Institute is well-known for its exceptional distance learning programs, emphasizing career-oriented fields of study. The PCA program is highly praised for its self-paced coursework, flexible class hours, and hands-on training delivered by capable teachers. Students also praise the helpful career services and conducive learning environment. 

This is among the shortest PCA programs with students ready to pursue their career in as little as two months of study. But its short duration doesn’t compromise the quality and rigor of the coursework. The courses include Nutrition and Wellness, Vital Signs, and Medications: What to Do and What Not to Do. 

Accreditation: Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC)

Why choose this online school_

The teachers make it easy for students to learn the lessons and enjoy the hands-on training. Students also get job placement assistance aside from all-inclusive tuition. 

Certificate in Accounting Services Specialist Programs

The accounting cycle, terminology, and processes are just a few subjects that students of accounting services specialist certificate programs learn. Students also learn about gathering and recording data, maintaining financial records, and interpreting financial statements. Most programs last for 3-12 months and require a high school diploma or equivalent for admission purposes. 

Since many of the accounting processes are computer-based, students also learn about relevant computer programs and applications. Other common subjects include business law, payroll accounting, and inventory management. 

Career possibilities include accounts receivable or accounts payable clerks, bookkeeping clerks, and administrative assistants, among other entry-level work. The median annual income for these positions is $42,410 in May 2020, with good overall job prospects. 

University of California – Davis

Accounting Specialist Certificate Program

1333 Research Park Dr. Davis, CA 95618

(530) 757-8777

Students spend 15-18 months in five online classes acquiring a thorough understanding of accounting principles and practices, a foundation for success. Keep in mind that the UC Davis Accounting Specialist Certificate Program is designed for advanced-level accounting that prepares students for senior-level positions. If you have a solid background in accounting, you will find it fairly easy to tackle. 

The program requires completing 20 units of academic coursework with a minimum grade of “C” for successful completion. Due to the ever-evolving nature of the coursework, students must complete the requirements within five years after enrollment. 

Accreditation: Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC)

Why choose this online school_

Students appreciate the online convenience, industry-standard curriculum, and access to competent instructors dedicated to their success. Credits earned can also be counted toward CPA requirements. 

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Southwestern Community College

Accounting and Finance Certificate

447 College Drive Sylva, NC 28779

(828) 339-4000

The 16-credit accounting and finance certificate program consist of five classes spread over two semesters. The covered topics include accounting software applications, income taxation, and managerial accounting. Students develop skills including financial statement preparation and interpretation, communication of accounting information, and other related topics. 

There are no admission requirements apart from a high school diploma or its equivalent. Applicants, nonetheless, are well-advised to have a good grasp of math and English for success in the program. 

Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSC) 

Why choose this online school_

Students are provided with the opportunity for self-paced learning consideration of their unique circumstances. The curriculum is designed to provide them with a basic mastery of accounting and finance principles. 

Certificate in Wind Turbine Service Technician Programs

Wind turbine service technicians, or wind techs, are responsible for installing, maintaining, and repairing wind turbines.  While there are only about 7,000 wind techs in 2019, the job prospects are excellent because of the increase in demand for wind turbines. Their median annual wage was $56,230 in May 2020, and their job growth is projected at 61% (2019-2029). 

Becoming a wind tech requires specialized training through community colleges and technical schools offering certificates in wind energy technology. The coursework includes hydraulic and electrical systems, braking systems and mechanical systems, and computers and programmable logic control systems. There’s also a 12-month on-the-job training that provides practical experience with a specific wind turbine technology. 

Clinton Community College

Wind Turbine Service Technician Certificate Program

136 Clinton Point Drive, Plattsburgh, New York 12901

(518)562-4200

The 28-credit Wind Turbine Service Technician Certificate Program prepares students for entry-level positions or career advancement in the renewable energy industry. Students undertake subjects like Technical Mathematics, Electronics Technology, and Wind Energy & Turbine Technology. Since the job involves physical work, students also have health and physical education, safety at height and rescue, and industrial health and safety. 

Graduates are more than ready to become wind techs, thanks to their strong background in wind turbine systems. Like wind techs, their competence is praised by employers, which isn’t an easy feat in the safety-conscious, efficiency-focused industry. 

Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE)

Why choose this online school_

If you choose to pursue higher education, such as an associate in applied arts degree in wind energy and turbine technology, all the earned credits are transferable. The college’s curriculum is also among the best in the state, if not the country, for aspiring wind techs. 

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Amarillo College

Industrial Technology Technician Certificate – Wind Energy Option

2201 S. Washington Amarillo TX 79109

(806) 371-5036

The certificate is part of the college’s Renewable Energy Wind Technology Program. Students learn the skills necessary to start careers in the renewable energy industry and get a solid foundation on their continuing education. Their skills cover the manufacturing, installation, and operation of wind turbines and their related components. 

The 45-semester-hour curriculum is divided into Industrial Fundamentals (15), Major Course Requirements (12), and Major Course Options (18). The coursework includes subjects like Basic Electrical Theory, Programmable Logic Controllers, and Machinery Installation. 

Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

Why choose this online school_

You have many career options with an industrial technology technician certificate under your belt! Your options include being a wind tech, quality control inspector, and industrial production assistant. 

Certificate in Small Business Accounting Programs

Several of these programs can be completed in two semesters on a full-time basis, although self-paced programs with a 9-month target completion are also required. These programs are designed for small business owners who want a basic knowledge of the accounting principles and processes applicable to their situation. These may also be suitable for people who want to learn the fundamentals of small business accounting practices, such as bookkeepers. 

With a small business accounting certificate, you can choose to become a small business entrepreneur or an employee in the accounting section. Small business owners earned $68,888 in median annual salary in April 2020, while accounting clerks earned a median annual salary of $41,230. 

Dakota County Technical College

Small Business Accounting – Certificate

1300 145th Street East Rosemount, MN 55068

(651) 423-8000

Dakota County Technical College (DCTC) is among the best technical colleges in Minnesota, and its small business accounting certificate program lives up to its reputation. Students become prepared for success as entrepreneurs or as administrative personnel with accounting functions. 

The 16-credit program includes subjects like Principles of Financial Accounting, Payroll Accounting, and Accounting Computer Applications. Students leave the program with a competent grasp of small business accounting principles and practices. 

Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission (HLC) 

Why choose this online school_

The award-winning faculty ensures that students learn by heart the accounting principles and practices that serve as pillars of small business success. The curriculum itself challenges students to do their best and, thus, encourages them to learn more. 

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Anoka Ramsey Community College

Small Business Accounting Certificate 

11200 Mississippi Blvd NW Coon Rapids, MN 55433-3470

(763) 433-1100

Anoka-Ramsey Community College (ARCC) is known for its strong commitment to providing students with quality professional development and continuing education programs. The small business accounting certificate program is popular because of its focus on career-specific or job-specific skills learned within a short time. The concentrated format allows students to learn at their own pace but also learn fast. 

Students must complete at least 12-semester credits of 1000 or above courses and achieve at least 2.0 in these courses at ARCC. The 17-credit program includes subjects in human relations, computerized accounting, and financial accounting. 

Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission

Why choose this online school_

Many of the credits earned are transferrable to an AS or AAS degree in business or accounting. But even without higher education, graduates have many job opportunities available. Their skills, such as preparation of journal entries and financial statements, are enough for entry-level accounting jobs. 

Certificate in Home Inspection Programs 

These programs can be offered entirely online or in hybrid formats with on-the-job training. While there are minimum admission requirements, most programs require a minimum age requirement (18 years old). Once admitted, students engage in a wide range of classes in state inspection laws and inspection of electrical, plumbing, and HVAC systems. 

Students also become proficient in inspecting roofs, foundations, and structures, among other interior and exterior parts of houses. Their coursework includes interactive activities, class discussions, and examinations, too. Most programs involve completing 5-16 credit hours that can be completed in 6-12 months. 

Construction and building inspectors earned $62,860 median annual wage in May 2020. Certification is a must for their occupation. 

Carroll Community College

Certificate – Home Inspector

1601 Washington Road, Westminster, MD 21157

(410) 386-8000

There are no prerequisites for admission into this program, but students must possess basic math, science, and English skills to succeed. Students learn the skills necessary to demonstrate the required competencies set by the State of Maryland and its Department of Labor for home inspector certification. 

Students can complete the entire program in about 81 hours with a self-paced format in place. The core courses include home inspection training, others, and completion of the program results in eligibility for the National Home Inspector Examination. 

Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE)

Why choose this online school_

Aside from being approved by the Maryland Commission of Real Estate Appraisers and Home Inspectors, the program’s curriculum goes above and beyond the minimum requirements. Graduates are known to get well-paying jobs soon after program completion and certification.  

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Ashworth College

Home Inspection Program

5051 Peachtree Corners Circle, Suite 200 Norcross, Georgia 30092

1-800-957-5412

Ashworth College promises its students, in its Home Inspection Program, that they will gain real-world expertise toward becoming successful home inspection professionals. Such promise is grounded on its outstanding curriculum with coursework ranging from HVAC inspections to hazard assessment. 

This is a self-paced program with textbooks, a mobile app for learning materials, and a student portal dashboard for lessons and student support. Students have access to online labs and libraries and an active online community. The coursework makes it easier for students to learn the ins and outs of home inspection through step-by-step lessons. 

Accreditation: Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC) 

Why choose this online school_

With its certificate, you have plenty of job opportunities in store! Ashworth College is unique in that it offers great support for job placement for its students, including resume and cover letter templates. Plus, its affordable tuition makes it easy to earn its certificate on a modest budget. 

Certificate in Event Planning Programs 

While it isn’t necessary to have formal training as an event planner, you will benefit from it! Enroll in a certificate in event planning program and acquire the knowledge, skills, and networks that will push your career to new heights. Certificate programs are great for newbies in the field, too, since their coursework boosts your credibility. 

The curriculum includes topics related to event planning and management like staffing, budgeting, and advertising. Students also tackle food and beverage, event design strategies, and vendor contracts, and customer relations. 

Career options include convention coordinators, wedding planners, and seminar directors. With a 7% increase in jobs (2018-2028) and a median annual wage of $51,560 as of May 2020. 

University of Southern Maine

Certificate in Event Planning and Management

PO Box 9300, Portland, ME 04104

1-800-800-4876

Students in the Certificate in Event Planning and Management (CEPM) program acquire a comprehensive understanding of their chosen occupation through extensive coursework. The program features event management, sport event management, and beverage operations conducted by experienced event planners and other experienced professionals. 

Completion candidates must earn 12 credits with at least a C- grade in each course. Electives are offered to suit each student’s interests, but all students must complete a capstone project with original research. 

While there are no prerequisites, USM reserves the right to determine admission on a case-to-case basis. 

Accreditation: New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE)

Why choose this online school_

Students leave the program with above-par knowledge and skills about event management in several events, from weddings to sports tournaments. The capstone project also allows them to experience real-life event planning activities. 

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Kennesaw State University

Event Planning and Management Certificate

3333 Busbee Drive, #3301 Kennesaw, Georgia 30144

(470) 578-6765

The Event Planning and Management Certificate program consists of 12 class sessions for a 36-semester hours credit. Students learn about planning, managing, and hosting safe, effective, and efficient events, including weddings, sports events, and corporate events. The courses include site selection, risk management, and vendor and client contracts, too. 

The Flex course format allows students to choose between physical and remote class meetings, but both modes are characterized by quality instruction. The program welcomes a wide range of individuals, from new high school graduates to experienced planners and working adults seeking a career change. 

Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSC)

Why choose this online school_

With a reputation for being the best online college in Georgia, KSU is the best choice for online certificate programs! 

Certificate in Welding Programs 

Professional welders are in high demand because of their decaying physical infrastructure and the enduring demand for their services in many other sectors. Plus, becoming one only requires a high school diploma and short-term training in a welding certificate program! The rewards are impressive, too, considering the ease with which the skills were acquired – welders earned $44,190 in median annual wage as of May 2020. 

Aspiring welders learn about reading blueprints, calculating dimensions of parts for welding, and working safely with welding tools and machinery. Their studies last for less than a year, and their courses can cover all types of welding, including gas and stick welding. Post-completion certification may also be pursued since most employers prefer it. 

Thaddeus Stevens College of Technology

Welding Technology Program

750 E King St. Lancaster, PA 17602

(717) 537-0589

Stevens Tech’s Welding Technology program is considered among the best because it focuses on career-specific skills needed by entry-level welders. Graduates eventually find work in a wide range of industries, including construction, transportation, oil, and gas, and qualify for career advancement with experience. 

Students acquire mastery of welding practices through a combination of theory and hands-on application in several welding specialties. Their coursework includes basic gas metal, gas tungsten and shielded metal arc welding, blueprint reading, advanced CAD, and oxy-fuel welding. 

Accreditation: Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools (MSACS) 

Why choose this online school_

Graduates have gained apprenticeships and job positions in prestigious companies like Apex Tool Group and BAE Systems. Stevens Tech is also in the Top 10 of the Top Two-year Trade Schools listing by Forbes, among other accolades. 

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Hobart Institute of Welding Technology

Combination Structural and Pipe Welding

400 Trade Square E, Troy, OH 45373

(937) 332-9500

If you’re looking for a school with an exclusive focus on welding, then the Hobart Institute of Welding Technology is the best! The institute offers high-quality instruction in two specializations – Structural Welding and Combination Structural & Pipe Welding. Both are suitable for aspiring welders looking for the best training for entry-level jobs. 

The Structural Welding program runs for 24 weeks or 840 clock hours, the shorter of the two programs. The courses include Welding Technology and Blueprint Reading, Gas Tungsten Arc Welding, and Gas Metal Arc Welding. Students also study the theory of metal weldability. 

The Combination Structural & Pipe Welding course lasts for 40 weeks or 1,400 clock hours. Students learn about major welding processes, including safety and technical information. Completing the requirements makes one eligible for five AWS-QC7 National Welder Certifications and entry-level combination welder jobs. 

Accreditation: Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC)

Why choose this online school_

As a non-profit institution, Hobart is committed to advancing welding education excellence not just in Ohio, but in the entire country. You have the assurance that your welding training is above-par. 

Certificate in Nursing Assistant Programs 

With a job growth forecast at 8% (2019-2029) and a median annual wage of $30,850 in May 2020, the nursing assistant sector is on a roll! Nursing assistants care for patients in a wide range of healthcare settings and assist healthcare professionals in other tasks. 

Furthermore, the great thing about getting a nursing assistant certificate is that it’s a starting point for a rewarding healthcare career. Students learn basic nursing care skills, CPR and first aid, and patient safety through classroom, clinical and laboratory work. Soft skills, like grace under pressure and effective communication, are also part of the coursework. 

Admission requirements may include a high school diploma or GED, recent immunizations and TB test results, and criminal background check. 

Pratt Community College

Nurse Aide Certification Program

348 NE SR 61 Pratt KS 67124

1-800-794-3091

Pratt Community College is a notable workforce development educational institution that offers Kansas’s best-certified nursing assistant (CNA) program. Students can complete the course almost entirely online – there’s online coursework and on-campus clinical and laboratory work. While it can be completed in three months or less, students have the option to extend their completion target.  

Admission requirements include: 

  • At least 16 years at the time of admission 
  • Negative TB test in the last six months of the class start date 
  • Driver’s license
  • Social Security card 

Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission (HLC) 

Why choose this online school_

Students find the CNA education affordable, thanks to the flat per-credit-hour tuition rate. The curriculum is also flexible yet rigorous enough for students to have a good chance at passing the certification exam. 

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Cochise College

Nursing Assistant – Certificate Program

901 Colombo Ave, Sierra Vista, AZ 85635

1-800-966-7943

The CNA program is approved by the Arizona State Board of Nursing and can be completed in a single semester. Students find the curriculum easy enough to understand yet challenging enough to have a good shot at the certification exam. The coursework emphasizes specific patient-care skills, patient safety, and patient rights, as well as a CNA’s professional responsibilities. 

There’s a minimum age requirement – at least 16 years old before program completion. Candidates must also provide proof of US citizenship or qualifying alien status, receive an absolute discharge for a felony conviction, and pass background checks. Students complete six credits to be considered for completion. 

Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission (HLC) 

Why choose this online school_

The graduate outcomes include a demonstration of competence in the wide range of responsibilities that CNAs must perform on the job. Students learn what it takes to be the best CNAs and, thus, become employable. 

Certificate in Medical Transcriptionist Programs 

Medical transcriptionists typically complete a 1-year certificate program where they learn to convert voice recordings into written reports. Their work may also involve editing medical documents and assisting in preparing patients’ medical histories. Indeed, theirs is a sensitive work that demands attention to detail. 

In May 2020, their median annual wage was $35,270, and their job prospects were considered excellent due to the increasing use of voice recognition technology. Many even enjoy the benefits of working from home. 

Students in these programs can complete the requirements in 6-12 months, depending on their course load. The typical courses include medical terminology and abbreviations, anatomy, and risk management. Students must also be proficient in the English language, including proper grammar and punctuation. 

California State University Bakersfield

Medical Transcription Editor Certificate Program

9001 Stockdale Highway Bakersfield, California 93311-1022

(661) 654-2441

This program has an estimated 640 hours of completion time with more than 40 hours of real-world doctor dictations. The dictations cover a wide range of medical specialties, dictation styles, and accents so students can focus on the task at hand. Students must also undergo 16 hours of editing practicum in addition to the academic coursework. 

The courses include: 

  • Keyboard Kinetics 
  • Healthcare Documentation 
  • Grammar and Punctuation 
  • Pharmacology

Applicants should be at least 18, possess a high school diploma or equivalent, and pass the assessment test. 

Accreditation: Western Association of Schools and Colleges, Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC) 

Why choose this online school_

Experienced medical transcriptionists designed the program and, thus, students learn from the experts. Students also appreciate the affordable tuition, one-on-one support, and convenient online format. 

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Everett Community College

Medical Transcription and Editing

2000 Tower Street, Everett, WA 98201

(425) 388-9100

This is approved by the Association for Healthcare Documentation Integrity (AHDI), and, thus, students are assured of high-quality instruction. The courses include anatomy and physiology, medical terminology and abbreviations, and English grammar. Students also undergo training in transcribing and editing doctor dictations, with each course becoming more challenging. 

Candidates can apply for admission before the start of any quarter. Every credit requires about three hours of work per week, and the entire program consists of 43 credits. Students earn the skills for entry-level jobs in medical transcription and editing. 

Accreditation: Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities

Why choose this online school_

This program is designed for completion in different lengths of time, and, thus, it’s among the most flexible programs. 

Certificate in Criminal Justice Specialist Programs 

The criminal justice specialist certificate program is popular among individuals who want to start a career in criminal justice but don’t have the time and money to pursue an associate’s or bachelor’s degree. This is an easier, quicker, and less expensive path that can still lead to a rewarding career, particularly with continuing education. 

Individuals who complete these programs qualify for entry-level jobs in the criminal justice system. Job opportunities include corrections officer, jail officer, and bailiff. With work experience and continuing education, a certificate can also lead to better-paying positions. 

The typical programs consist of 4-5 courses or 12-15 credits completed on a full-time or part-time basis. The coursework cover topics like criminal justice management and corrections. 

Lanier Technical College

Criminal Justice Specialist Certificate Program

2535 Lanier Tech Drive Gainesville, GA 30507

(770) 533-7000

The Criminal Justice Specialist program at Lanier Technical College consists of courses designed for students to be competent criminal justice specialists. Students undergo both academic coursework and practical hands-on training for total development. Upon completing the program, they can apply for entry-level positions and advance in their careers. 

Plus, it’s among the shortest certificate programs with one semester or 15 credit hours only! Candidates should be 16 years of age when of admission and submit standardized test scores (SAT, ACT, ASSET, or COMPASS). 

Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)

Why choose this online school_

The focus on the technical nature of being a criminal justice specialist makes its program stand out from the rest. 

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Seminole State College of Florida

Criminal Justice Technology Specialist Technical Certificate

100 Weldon Boulevard, Sanford, FL 32773

(407) 708-4722

The 24-credit program can be the starting point for individuals who intend to pursue a career in criminal justice. Earned credits can be transferred toward an associate degree in criminal justice technology at SSCF, too. Students can apply their certificates toward employment in the fields of public safety and security, law, and education. 

The coursework includes Introduction to Criminology and Criminal Justice; Drugs, Alcohol and Crime; and Criminal Investigation. These subjects are led by experienced instructors who are committed to quality education for their students. 

Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)

Why choose this online school_

Students can look forward to viable employment due to the program’s industry-focused design. The skills learned here are sought after by employers, thanks to the strong industry-academe partnership. 

Certificate in Personal Trainer Programs 

Being a certified personal trainer has its perks, including good pay and rewarding work. There’s also the opportunity to choose between being an employee of a high-paying company or a private personal trainer. In many cases, you can also do both! 

Certificate programs for aspiring personal trainers also come in several types, from the short three-month to the longer six-month programs. But most programs emphasize safe, effective, and efficient exercise, nutrition, and motivation techniques. Aspiring physical trainers must be physically fit and possess a strong work ethic to thrive in these programs. 

International Sports Sciences Association (ISSA)

Personal Trainer Certification

7227 N. 16th Street, Suite 262 Phoenix, Arizona 85020

1-800-545-4772

ISSA offers a personal training certification program with a balanced approach toward fitness and nutrition for the general public and special populations. Students choose from two study programs: 

  • The 10-week basic program includes online learning materials, practice exams, and audio lectures. 
  • The 4-week fast-track program consists of unlimited certification exams. 

Take note that the National Commission doesn’t accredit these programs for Certifying Agencies (NCCA). If you’re planning to apply for work that requires NCCA certification, you can take the NCCA-accredited exam. 

Accreditation: Distance Education and Training Council (DETC)

Why choose this online school_

The learning materials are organized and thorough, so the absence of live instruction isn’t a big deal. Students can ask their instructors, who are certified personal trainers, and their fellow students for assistance. ISSA waives the continuing education unit (CEU) renewal fees.  

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National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM)

Certified Personal Trainer Program

355 E. Germann Rd Ste. 201, Gilbert, AZ 85297

1-800-460-6276

NASM also offers several study options that fresh high school graduates and working adults can choose from depending on their particular needs. These options are: 

  • The self-study option is suitable for individuals who have already taken other personal fitness-related courses and have prior fitness experience. 
  • The premium self-study option includes extra study materials and guided study courses. 
  • The guided study option has the whole nine yards, including a 10-week instructor-led course. 

Accreditation: National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA)

Why choose this online school_

The NASM program is recognized by major fitness companies and gyms across the nation. NASM offers a job guarantee! 

Certificate in Insurance Claim Adjuster Programs

Insurance adjusters can work in the public and private sector and, in both cases, earn a good income. The fact that it’s fairly easy to become one of them is part of the appeal, and it’s possible through short-term certificate programs. 

The coursework introduces the insurance industry’s principles and practices, including underwriting and the insurance adjustment process. Students also learn about legal doctrine fundamentals, personal and commercial insurance, and accounting and finance. 

While some states don’t require licensing for insurance adjusters, professional certification is recommended. The pay can be higher, too, with professional certification. 

Florida State College at Jacksonville

Insurance Claims Adjuster Career Certificate

101 W State St, Jacksonville, FL 32202

(904) 317-3883

The state-approved 40-hour program results in the designation of accredited claims adjuster after completing its requirements, including a final exam. Completers are provided with an insurance claims adjuster certificate that will prove useful for employment purposes. There’s no need to take the state exam, too. 

You can immediately practice as an insurance claims adjuster after getting your certificate. Your sought-after skills will include effective investigation of insurance claims, on-point review of policy information, and preparation of detailed reports. 

Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges SACSCOC)

Why choose this online school_

The job opportunities coming your way will be aplenty! These include being an independent adjuster or a company employee adjuster, both of which pay well and provide opportunities for career advancement. 

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Tarrant County College

Insurance All Lines Adjuster

5301 Campus Drive Fort Worth, TX 76119

(817) 515-8223

Tarrant County College’s program prepares its students to sit and pass the all-lines adjuster licensing exam. The exam is an integral part of the program! The coursework includes subjects related to auto accident claims, catastrophe claims, and workers’ compensation claims. All courses are conducted online and delivered by experienced instructors. 

Students who pass the licensing exam must have an in-person meeting with the program coordinator to complete the paperwork. Afterward, they can practice as all-lines adjusters. 

Accreditation: Texas Department of Insurance (TDI)

Why choose this online school_

The coursework itself is just the right level of easy and challenging. But the best perk is that it’s a short program that leads to a professional license.  

Certificate in Automotive Service Technician Programs 

Automotive service technicians make $44,050 in median annual wage, and we can assume that it excludes tips and sideline work. Indeed, their work may have its challenges, such as greasy tools and parts, but they are well-compensated! 

Becoming one is also quite easy, thanks to short-term certificate courses lasting 12 months or less. Upon completion, students can apply for entry-level positions as technicians or mechanics. Most choose to pursue the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence certification, too. 

The coursework includes engine performance analysis, automotive electronics, and automotive engine removal and installation. Students learn related skills through online classes and hands-on practicum. 

Penn Foster Career School

Automotive Repair Technician Program

925 Oak Street, Scranton, PA 18515 USA

1-800-275-4410

With Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) Master Technicians behind the development of this program, students have the guarantee of excellent technical instruction. Besides mastering the basic skills of an automotive repair technician, you can also be well-prepared to ace the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence Certification exams. Students have the option of engaging in hands-on training with local employers. 

The course material covers topics ranging from electronic systems to engine repair. Considering that with the trends in the automotive industry, the specific coursework may change to reflect the changes. 

Accreditation: Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC)

Why choose this online school_

Most of the classes may be online, but these have the quality of in-person instruction! This is possible through numerous informative videos, virtual simulations, and mobile-friendly coursework. 

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City Colleges of Chicago

Automotive Maintenance, Basic Certificate

180 N. Wabash, Chicago, IL 60601

(773) 265-5343

The program consists of 27 credit hours covering a wide range of subjects designed for students to acquire basic automotive maintenance skills. These subjects include Electrical Systems & Power Accessories, Auto Service Management, and Steering & Suspension Systems. 

With its job-specific skills training, the program provides students with the skills for entry-level jobs. But career advancement isn’t far behind, with graduates qualified for entry-level supervisory jobs with further education. Hands-on training is a requirement for completion. 

Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission​ (HLC)

Why choose this online school_

Students aren’t just trained in the repair and maintenance of automobiles. Instructors also ensure that they learn the essential soft skills for success in the field. 

Certificate in Paralegal Programs 

These programs encourage students to master the basics of the law, legal terminology, and litigation to prepare for their well-paying jobs in the judicial industry. The coursework includes court proceedings, legal technology, and legal research and writing. 

Many employers prefer paralegals with an American Bar Association-approved certificate, but most also hire accredited certificate programs. Students should ideally be proficient in the English language and computer technology, including Internet tools.  

Post University

Certificate in Paralegal Studies 

800 Country Club Road PO Box 2540 Waterbury, CT 06723

(800) 660-6615

The beauty of possessing a certificate in paralegal studies from Post University lies in its versatility. You can apply for entry-level jobs in government legal offices, corporate law offices, and banks, among others. 

The program consists of at least 30 credits that can be completed in one year or less. Students tackle a wide range of subjects, including professional communication, ethical awareness, and technology skills, aside from the usual legal courses.  

Accreditation: New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE) 

Why choose this online school_

Designed with inputs from lawyers, the program is considered among the best for holistic education. The one-on-one instruction and attention contribute to an exceptional experience, too. 

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Liberty University

Undergraduate Certificate in Paralegal Studies

1971 University Blvd., Lynchburg, Virginia 24515

(800) 424-9595

Students benefit from the eight-week classes in the program that can be completed in a year or so. There are also eight start dates each year, so interested individuals can enroll at whatever is their most convenient time. 

This is a 100% online program with 18 credit hours; transfer credits aren’t allowed. Admission requirements include a high school self-certification form and proof of English proficiency. 

Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges 

Why choose this online school_

Students establish strong foundational skills vital for their success as paralegals. They can also customize their classes according to their career goals. 

Certificate in Physical Therapy Aide Programs 

Physical therapist aides can become certified healthcare professionals after completing a certificate program and passing a certification exam. The typical program itself can be completed in 2-3 months and require classes for 3-4 hours a couple of days a week. The coursework consists of classroom courses and laboratory work combined with an internship experience, a common combo in healthcare occupations. 

These programs also teach students the technical and non-technical duties of their future occupation. These include infection control and injury prevention, ethics and legal issues, and patient transfer procedures. 

Houston Community College

Online Physical Therapy Aide Certification Course

3100 Main Street, Houston TX 77002

(713) 718-2000

The HCC program is excellent for passing the AMCA Physical Therapy Technician/Aide certification exam, a desirable graduate outcome. Students then master the basic duties of their future occupation in various healthcare settings through courses in human anatomy, system disorders, and patient transfer. Their studies also include the expected legal and ethical behavior in each healthcare setting and their specific tasks. 

Apart from a high school diploma (or its equivalent), there are no admission prerequisites. Students, however, must be physically and mentally fit for the hands-on training. 

Accreditation: Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACSCOC)

Why choose this online school_

The program has an above-par retention rate and passing rate for the certification exam. These are proof that its quality of instruction meets if not exceeds, the standards. 

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SUNY Corning Community College

Certified Physical Therapy Aide (Online)

1 Academic Drive, Corning, NY

(607) 962-9222

The 100% online courses also prepare students to pass the American Medical Certification Association’s (AMCA) Physical Therapy Technician/Aide certification exam. But SUNY Corning Community College differentiates its program by ensuring positive student experiences that encourage them to finish it. Plus, students have the professional skills for their future occupation but are known for their positive attitude. 

The program includes an externship starter kit designed to fast-track the process of finding an externship position. There are also no prerequisites for admission. 

Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education

Why choose this online school_

The college itself has a reputation for exceptional quality of instruction, and such reputation extends to its Certified Physical Therapy Aide program. Employers recognize the value of the certificate program and, thus, are more likely to hire its graduates. 

Certificate in Early Childhood Education Programs 

These programs pave the way for its students to meet the state licensure requirements toward becoming pre-school teachers. Keep in mind that these requirements vary but, aside from the certificate training, these typically include immunization records and background checks. 

Graduates have the skills to work with children in several settings, too, such as Head Start programs, public and private pre-schools, and child care centers. Their understanding of children’s needs, particularly their learning development, makes them among the sought-after professionals in the country. Their training includes courses in child development, health, safety and nutrition, and family and culture. 

Indiana University East

Graduate Certificate in Early Childhood Education

2325 Chester Blvd. Richmond, IN 47374

(765) 973-8418

Emphasis should be made that this is a graduate certificate program for students with a bachelor’s degree but who want to boost their skills and advance their careers. The typical students include pre-school teachers, special educators, and childcare staff. They share a common goal: To acquire a documented emphasis on teaching children during their early childhood. 

The 21-credit program consists of core courses like Organization and Administration of Early Childhood Education, Advanced Curriculum Study in Early Childhood Education, and Evaluation of Classroom Behavior. An internship is also a requirement. 

Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission (HCL) 

Why choose this online school_

Students’ knowledge and skills in the program have numerous applications in education, child care, and family services. This means plenty of job opportunities may open up for graduates. 

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Eastern Washington University

Early Childhood Education Program Online

526 5th St, Cheney, WA 99004

(800) 826-3411

With just 30 credit hours for completion, students can get their early childhood education certificate in as little as 12 months. Students are provided with quality instruction designed to boost their capacity as educators for children up to eight years old. Their training will influence their capacity to deliver better educational experiences for their pupils, too. 

This is also a graduate certificate program that allows students with certification from the State of Washington to add the P-3 endorsement on their teaching certificate. 

Accreditation: Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU)

Why choose this online school_

The program has a holistic approach in that students are trained to determine the impact of risk and protective factors on children’s overall growth. The credits earned can also be transferred to a master’s degree. 

Certificate in Travel Agent Programs 

Travel agents learn through certificate programs, including courses in geography, international travel procedures, and computer reservation systems. Their training also includes customer relations, travel marketing, and suitable matching of clients and vacation packages. Indeed, theirs can be a challenging job that will benefit from formal, albeit short, training.  

Most certificate travel agent programs can be completed within a year because there’s less focus on general education and more specialized skills. Certification is possible by passing the Travel Agency Proficiency (TAP) test and earning certification from the Travel Institute. 

Stratford Career Institute

Travel & Tourism Distance Learning Course

1 Champlain Commons, Unit 3 P.O. Box 1560 Saint Albans, VT 05478-5560

1-800-254-4070

Stratford’s travel and tourism certificate program is the quintessential example because of its wide coverage of topics. Students learn about all types of travel and their related planning, including regulation and fares. 

There are four modules, including Taking Off in Travel, Fares and Ticketing, and Geography for the Travel Professional. Graduates can sit for the TAP test, too. 

Why choose this online school_

While SCI doesn’t hold accreditation, it’s widely considered among the best schools for aspiring travel agents and other professionals. Such reputation alone can be your ticket to employment.  

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Ashworth College

Online Travel Agent Training Program

5051 Peachtree Corners Circle, Suite 200 Norcross, Georgia 30092

1-800-957-5412

Students of Ashworth’s travel agent training program can navigate the ins and outs of travel planning for their individual and group clients. Plus, they can sit in the TAP test in as little as four months of full-time training. 

The program includes online reservation software simulations, access to the learning resource center, and a mobile app for on-the-go learning. Students use the Student Portal dashboard for their lessons. 

Accreditation: Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC)

Why choose this online school_

The self-study nature means that you can finish the program at your own pace, whether within four months or up to a year after the date of enrollment. 

Certificate in Interior Design Programs 

Interior design certificate programs cover the basics of the improvement of the form and function of interior spaces. As such, their coursework includes the use of furniture and furnishings, space and color, and fabrics in commercial and residential interiors. These programs are also short-term in nature, with a completion period of less than a year. 

Graduates don’t just find employment as interior designers. Many also work as home stagers, showroom managers, and visual merchandisers. 

New York School of Interior Design

Basic Interior Design Certificate

401 Park Avenue South New York, NY 10016

(212) 472-1500

NYSID’s basic interior certificate program combines the flexibility and convenience of online classes with the challenging, yet rewarding, curriculum for which it’s known for. Students enjoy a wide variety of interactive activities, including lectures, discussion boards, and student collaborations. 

The 24-credit self-paced program involves asynchronous classes where students will get weekly assignments and watch pre-recorded lectures at their own pace. But students must make weekly log-ins to continue with the program. Completion can be made as a full-time or part-time student. 

Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE)

Why choose this online school_

The emphasis on fundamental interior design skills, including visual and decorative arts, makes it an exceptional choice for aspiring professionals. There’s also a great balance between theory and practical learning. 

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New York Institute of Art + Design

Interior Design Certificate Online

192 Lexington, Suite 701, New York 10016

1-800-583-1742

NYIAD is a notable institution in New York, and its online interior design certificate program has earned accolades from alumni and industry professionals alike. Students learn about design trends, color theory, and fabric styles, which are vital in making suitable interior design decisions.  

The program includes more than 13 hours of instructional videos featuring many of the best professionals in the state. Since it’s approved by the Designer Society of America (DSA), graduates can apply for their industry certification (Residential Interior Design Qualification Certification (RIDQC). Students also have 24/7 access to learning materials, one-on-one feedback, and a risk-free 14-day trial period. 

Accreditation: Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC)

Why choose this online school_

NYIAD provides students with access to the DSA network that, in turn, can open up professional opportunities even as a student.

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