Going to college not only requires a lot of time and energy, but it also takes a lot of money. Particularly when you start looking into graduate school you will find that earning a masters degree online is expensive; there is simply no way around it. However, you also probably know that earning your masters degree can net you a lot of money over your working life. It is important to know that there really are no inexpensive online degree programs; in fact, online learning is often more expensive than traditional learning.
Earning a masters degree, according to the United States Bureau of Labor and Statistics, can earn you nearly 1.5 million dollars over your lifetime more than having no degree, and nearly half a million more than having just a bachelor's degree; that is an income boost well worth the cost of tuition. But, still, you wonder, "How can I afford a masters degree in business online?" The answer is simple: financial aid.
Paying for Your Graduate Degree
So, you know that school is expensive, yet valuable. But what you may not realize is that even you, an adult student, can get money to help you cover that expense. And yes, you can get it even for online courses. Your school's financial aid department can help you apply for a Federal Pell Grant or Federal Stafford Loan. There are also Federal GRAD Plus loans to consider. In addition to these traditional methods of payment, there are some more interesting methods as well for financing your masters degree in business online.
Employer Paid Tuition and Tax Credits for Graduate Education
In addition to grants and loans, there are other ways to pay for a degree. One way is to ask your current employer if they will pay all or part of your graduate degree. Ask; you might be surprised. But, do know that sometimes employer educational benefits are taxed as regular income, so if your work does pay for your tuition, be sure you understand any tax repercussion. Speaking of taxes, there are also ways that your tax return can help make education more affordable.
The United States tax code allows a variety of deductions and credits for people going to college. You may be able to get a credit or claim deductions for your masters degree in business online. Look into the American Opportunity Credit, The Hope Credit and The Lifetime Learning Credit. Also, consider whether you can deduct various education expenses such as tuition and text books. Tax laws are, of course, complicated. But you can read a bit more about how to save money on your taxes through education by checking out the IRS website.
The Types of Financial Aid You Can Get
In short, you need to do three things to look into financial aid to pay for your masters degree. First, ask your employer if they will subsidize your education. Second, check with your school financial aid office on what aid you may qualify for. Three, consult your accountant or do the research yourself to see how much you may save with deductions and credits. Check out our section Preparing for Online Learning to learn more details about the various types of financial aid available for your masters degree in business online.
Share your knowledge with others by posting here.