Here is what you should know first: there aren't very many highly reputable online psychology degree programs. Relative to the other degree programs at the top colleges and universities for psychology this is the equivalent of being in poor company. Most psychology students at these colleges and universities pay thousands of dollars in student loans for their degrees, yet they can graduate with little student loan debt at all or with minimal debt at best. So, while online degree options are usually considered to offer better value by many, they are not necessarily more reputable than other options. That's why I feel compelled to make this point and explain it.
The first thing you have to ask yourself is whether or not your education is actually of any use to you. For example, an online psychology degree will typically take four years to complete, depending on which degree program you select. An online bachelor's degree typically takes about two years. A Master's Degree takes three years. A PhD typically takes six years.
As you can see, if you are serious about going after these types of highly prestigious degrees, you will likely have to get a good job in the field to make it worth your while to go after a higher education. This is not always a problem though. There are lots of scholarships available for online psychology degrees. Students who are smart and motivated enough to wade through the hurdles can often earn money to help pay for school. Many of these scholarships require that the student be on the campus throughout the year, however, if you are ambitious, I recommend that you look into some of the scholarship options available.
Many of the online degree programs are set up with departments that allow students to focus on one area of study, such as human behaviors or clinical psychology. This allows students to specialize in a smaller area while earning their degree. Of course, not every school has departments dedicated to specific areas, so you may have to contact each individual department to find out which courses you'll need to take. There are also typically course sequences offered which require you to spend a certain amount of time in a classroom, and then an additional number of hours online. Most of the time, the online classes are shorter than their physical counterparts.
As previously mentioned, most of these online courses will take you around two years to complete. Some may even take a little more, but many programs will have you finishing in about three. The average GPA for online master's degree applicants is a little over 3.5, and some schools have been known to have higher requirements for GPA's. If you have a family, young children, or other significant responsibilities, you should check out all of your options carefully before applying for an online master's degree in psychology.
One of the benefits of earning your online psychology bachelor's degree is that you can keep your current job while you complete your education. With . . . . . . many current jobs requiring knowledge in psychology, earning your degree online will allow you to continue working while making progress toward your new career. While earning your online psychology bachelor's degree, you will likely be attending class via the Internet. You will not miss out on the traditional classroom experience, like you would if you were to attend a traditional college.