29 November 2011
- Last edited 26 October 2015
Sorry about the delay in responding -- Thanksgiving holiday back up!
Thanks for your kind words.
Get Educated is indeed a different type of site than what you'll find out there today if you google for info on "online colleges." Mostly what you will get these days thru Google are sites that only list colleges which pay them to be listed. These sites are "student lead generation mills." They only paid if they recruit an actual student for the colleges that pay to be listed. These student lead generation sites are not working for you, the consumer, they are working as paid direct recruitment (re: sales) agents for each college they list. Mostly what you'll find on this sites are large for profit colleges which use the pay per student recruitment model to snag students.
Get Educated offers free listings to every qualified accredited online college -- so consumers get a lot more choice. This lets us list a great many small, public and non-profit state colleges.
We accept advertising BUT we are paid a flat rate like a newspaper and not ever paid per lead or per student that we persuade to enroll in a specific college. This lets us publish a great deal of independent real data -- like cost and real online student reviews -- that we could not publish if our goal was simply to get you to enroll in the colleges that buy ads disguised as college directory listings.
Now, enough of that, onto your questions ...
If you have 4 associate degrees and 216 semester credits it is time for you to find a college that will let you transfer in or roll up all those old credits toward a bachelors degree.
You have a very unique educationally profile so I'd agree 100% that your goal now is to find a college which will allow maximum transfer of existing old college credits AND which also will place the least limits on credits you have earned in non-traditional ways -- in this case through military / PONSI ACE training credit programs.
Any accredited online bachelors degree will require a minimum of 120-124 semester credits, You have that many PLUS a slew more. BUT all bachelors degrees also require that at least 30-60 of these credits be UPPER LEVEL -- junior or senior advanced courses often numbered 300 or 400 (freshman courses are numbered 100 and sophomore courses are numbered 200). Your main problem may be that you will need some courses at the junior/senior level to meet the bachelor degree requirement.
The best online college for you will be the one that allows you maximum transfer of what you have earned and a chance to earn deeper / junior senior credits based on your life work experience assessment.
There are only a few colleges that were designed from the beginning for non-traditional students like you and you have found one of them: Thomas Edison State College Online. That school was developed for adult distance learners and will allow you maximum transfer credit. (Almost all other online colleges will require that you take 30-45 credits of formal courses FROM them whether you need them or not and limit military credits to a max of 15-30 as a matter of policy).
PLUS TESC has one of the best programs for getting military credit conversions. An advisor there could help you assess the best type of bachelor degree for you and how you can best complete any remaining upper level credit requirements. You'll have to pay fees for an assessment but in your case it may be well worth those fees to have this assessment.
For more on college credit for life experience options and transfer student and assessment distance learning colleges like TESC see our great article on this issue: Are Life Experience Degrees All Scams.
Hope This Helps
All the Best