In Most Cases, Education Credentials Are Not Viable Alternatives To College

With student loans on the rise and colleges becoming more competitive, many students wonder if a college education is worth it. In their pursuit of more education, they find themselves turning to education credentials that are cheaper and more on par with what they plan to do with their lives. However, this is not a viable option.

The simple truth

According to a study done by Georgetown, some credentials can lead to higher paying jobs. These were mostly in fields that were already paying well, like aviation and computer technology. While it may be tempting to receive a cheaper education credential rather than a college degree, the long term results are not there.

Another study done with student loans showed that only 4% of those with Bachelor’s degrees defaulted on their loans, but over 20% of individuals with education credentials defaulted on theirs. With education credentials being overwhelmingly cheaper than a college education, one would think that if these people made as much money as those in college did, they could afford their loans.

The argument for not going to college is real. College is a very expensive venture and a lot of people have to pay their student loans for years after their education is finished. Plus, almost 50% of college students claimed that they are not working in the field their education is in. However, even if they are not working in the field their degree is in, they are well-rounded enough with their education that their degree shows their competency in many fields. While college may not be for everyone, it can take the average person and put them much further ahead than education credentials.

Why people turn to credentials over degrees

Education credentials are affordable, which is why many individuals are turning to them for alternatives to a college degree. They can show a person’s competency in a certain field rather than a general overview of their education. Education credentials could put someone ahead in the search for a new position because it showcases the skills that they have. That being said, one large problem with education credentials is that they are not widely known.

Many institutions and organizations offer these education credentials, but many of them are not regulated. While a person may get a certification from a company certifying their knowledge in the field, an employer may not be familiar with that institution or accreditation at all. While it may sound good or look good on a resume, without being familiar with it, an employer glances over it.

Concluding thoughts

With a college degree, everyone knows what it is. They know the requirements and the amount of time it takes to get the degree. While it may not be the exact field that the person is applying for work in, the degree shows a commitment of time and excellency that the entire world is familiar with. Getting education credentials on top of a college degree can set a person apart from the rest of the crowd, but without that college degree to show for, they are simply not worth the time or money.

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