Making Time for Online Education | FAQs

  • How long will it take to earn my degree?

    Most online students take one to two classes per semester. To complete a master’s degree online, students typically take two to three years. To complete a bachelor’s degree online, students may take longer since universities require more credit hours for undergraduate degrees.

    The time to complete a degree depends on financial aid requirements, family commitments, total credit hours required for your degree, the workload at your job, and unexpected life events.

    We have included the average time to complete in the "Program Summary" box of each program page for our human sciences degrees.

  • Is it possible to work full time while earning a degree through Great Plains IDEA?

    Yes, many of our students balance work, school, family, and fun. Hear from Great Plains IDEA Students about working while taking online college courses.

    You can also visit our Student Success Center for advice on how to manage your time, fine-tune your study skills, and much more.

    Many students choose Great Plains IDEA because it offers the flexibility to learn while working full-time. Hear from two graduates, Axton Betz-Hamilton and Kyle Roberson, on how online courses allowed them to balance work, life, and their education.

  • What happens if I need to take a break from the program? Can I resume at a later date?

    Some students do take a break. Visit with your campus coordinator or academic advisor to learn how a stop-out works at your home university.

  • When do I need to be online for class?

    Our online courses are nearly all asynchronous, which means you won’t need to be online at a specific day and time each week. Although you complete coursework when it’s convenient for you, a course is rarely self-paced. Instructors usually set weekly deadlines. It is your responsibility to fit schoolwork into your schedule. Review the course schedule each week and note all due dates. While opportunities to work ahead might occur, you may not have access to the entire course at once. Instructors often group material into one or two-week modules, making coursework available one module at a time.

  • Who are the typical students in Great Plains IDEA programs?

    Great Plains IDEA students are people like you who want a high-quality education. They may be professionals advancing their careers to the next level. They may be recent graduates earning a master’s degree or certificate while working full time. They may be people who have been away from school or the workforce who want to upgrade skills or want a career change. Some students are in the military and also taking classes. Some are spouses of military service members, and they need degree programs they can complete anytime, anywhere.

    In this video, instructor Yuya Kiuchi explains how he helps students in his classes get to know each other.