An Overview of the Best Bachelor Degree Programs for Working Adults

May 27, 2021

There are a variety of bachelor’s degree programs for working adults that can help individuals pursue their dream jobs. Whether you want to climb the professional ladder in your current area, change careers, or land a better-paying job, a strong college foundation can help.

An accredited bachelor degree program will enable you to work towards your professional aspirations. Many schools and colleges in the United States provide adult students or working adults with the opportunity to go beyond their high school diploma and pursue higher education through a range of online programs.

It is now easier than ever for students to sign up for and complete a bachelor’s degree, especially if they are looking open to pursuing their education online. 

Colleges like New England Tech offer a wide range of degree programs, including bachelor’s degree options for working adults and non-traditional students that can accommodate different lifestyles. Associate degree programs are also available, and can be completed in as little as 18 months. These online degree programs provide a great deal of flexibility, and you can complete them on campus, online, or via a hybrid education model, making them ideal for adult students.

What You Need to Know About Bachelor’s Degrees for Working Adults

Bachelor’s degree programs for working adults

A majority of adults are going back to school; just take a look at these students’ statistics:

  • Approximately 40% of post-secondary students are adult learners
  • Out of all the adult learners, 54% belong to the age group between 25 to 29, and 34% are over 39 are full-time students

Adult degree programs specifically cater to the unique needs of adult learners. Working adults often prefer degree completion programs that allow them to continue working full-time or part-time while also giving them some breathing space to manage other responsibilities and fulfill familial obligations.

Whether you want to catapult your career and seek a promotion or work towards a healthy pay raise at your current workplace, a college degree can make a significant difference.

For working adults, pursuing an associate’s degree or bachelor’s degree can fuel this professional growth by empowering them with the much-needed theoretical know-how and technical skills.

If  you are considering a complete career overhaul, an accelerated degree program in the new field of your choice will make pursuing the career path easier and more effective.

Many colleges and universities offer adult degree programs that cater to your desire to enter a new profession. An associate’s degree or bachelor’s degree serves as the perfect springboard to make a professional transition.

How to Choose the Right Degree for You?

First things first – choose a degree type. You can pick from an associate degree, bachelor’s, or master’s degree, depending on your current qualifications. The next thing to do is choose a major – this is where things could get tricky.

Choosing a perfect major may seem like a difficult task, especially if you aren’t quite sure what your abilities, interests, and career goals are. The following questions can help you narrow down your search as an adult learner:

Choosing the right degree

What unique abilities do I have?

Honest self-assessment will give you a great idea about your current capabilities and skills. Based on this assessment, you can gauge where and how you can improve and upskill. If you can find a degree program that enables you to hone your existing skills and introduce you to promising opportunities ahead, you have yourself a winner.

What are my top areas of interest?

Every person wants to do something that excites them. If you do not have a passion for what you do, you will never enjoy it or find the work fulfilling. Find your true calling by aligning your career choice with your interests and passions.

What kind of immediate and long-term value do I want to derive from my degree?

Once you list your abilities and interests, you will have a clearer understanding of the career path you want to tread on. After you establish this, you can start comparing degree options. Ask yourself what you want from your degree in the short and long run.

What are the downsides or disadvantages of my chosen major?

Of course, you will immediately spot the advantages of any major – but what about the potential downsides? Do your homework and find out what might make a particular degree program unideal for you. Make sure you weigh the pros and cons before making a decision.

Will the degree program help me develop skills that will remain relevant in the future?

Check whether the degree program of your choice will enable you to acquire skills that will be relevant 5 or 10 years down the line. You don’t want to get stuck in learning something that is here today, gone tomorrow.


Research about the various career avenues available to adult students. Look up online courses, refer to college websites, compare college degrees, check school rankings, speak to industry experts and other working adults who have completed their education recently.

5 High-Paying Professions and Bachelor’s Degree Programs

Here’s a quick look at five of the best-paying professions. While you may argue that surgeons and pilots stand to earn better pay than the professionals mentioned below, please know that this list covers career avenues that are achievable, affordable, and rewarding in equal measure for working adults.

Nurse Practitioners

With a growth rate of 52 percent and annual median pay of $109,820 per year, nursing is a field that is flourishing exponentially.

A degree in nursing can help you step into the industry with the right set of skills to capitalize on its growth and build a fulfilling career.

To prepare yourself for today’s complex and highly technological healthcare system, you will need to seek a degree, such as NEIT’s RN to BSN in Nursing. 

Accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN), this baccalaureate nursing program will help you develop a more holistic and knowledgeable approach to patient-centric care, ethical practice, accountability, decision-making, and more.

Non-traditional students or working adults with little or no background in nursing can start with an associate’s degree before pursuing their bachelor’s.

Computer and Information Systems Management

The IT industry is, rather unsurprisingly, one of the most rapidly evolving sectors, and a bachelor’s degree in this subject can help you earn a median pay of $146,360 per year.

IT managers are in great demand across the United States (and abroad), with a 10 percent job growth rate that is substantially better than the average projected growth rate for most other professions.

Being an IT professional, your operational and technical skills will allow you to analyze, anticipate, and respond in complex technical environments. Degrees like NEIT’s Information Technology will help fast track your growth in the field.

HVAC (heating, air conditioning, and refrigeration mechanics) Technology

HVACR technicians and installers have a very specialized job requiring a specific set of skills and technical know-how. The job outlook for these professionals remains promising, with 4 percent growth.

Statistics reveal that, in May 2019, the median annual wage for heating, air conditioning, refrigeration mechanics, and installers was $48,730.

Getting a degree in Refrigeration, Air Conditioning, and Heating technology from a reputable institute is a great way to enter this industry as a professional. Like many others, the HVAC industry welcomes non-traditional students and working adults with open arms.

Software Engineering / Web Development

Software developers, coders, and programmers are highly sought-after professionals across industry sectors. 

The annual median pay for software developers is $107,510, with a growth rate of 22%, which is much faster than average.

A degree program in software engineering is what you need for a promising career in the ever-evolving world of information technology. Colleges such as NEIT introduce various career opportunities to their students and prepare them to work as software developers, computer network support specialists, software testers, and more.

Contrary to popular belief, Silicon Valley is not the ONLY place for software engineers – these professionals are in massive demand all over the United States (and the world). 

Cybersecurity Management

Imagine fighting cybercrime and getting paid $99,730 per year to do so!

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, information security analysts’ employment will grow by 31% between 2019-2029. This growth is faster than the average for all occupations.

Businesses across multiple domains hire information security or cybersecurity management professionals because it is a constantly looming threat.

A bachelor’s degree in cybersecurity can train you in the intricacies of formulating strategies to combat such threats, making you a valuable asset to potential employers. 

Look for recognized colleges and institutes such as NEIT designated as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education (CAE-CDE) by The Department of Homeland Security and the National Security Agency.

As a graduate at NEIT, you will also be eligible for internationally recognized exams like the CompTIA Security +, CCNA, and MCSA exams.

Apart from these work areas, fields like data science, criminal justice, web design, business management, and construction management are some of the other professions that are in huge demand.

If you are on the lookout for programs in any of these fields, your search should begin with schools or online college options that offer fully or partially online classes.

9 Rewarding Bachelor’s Degree Programs for Working Adults

New England Institute of Technology delivers a vast range of degrees for working adults or adult students who want to make substantial progress in their careers or make a career switch.

Rewarding bachelor’s degree programs for working adults

Some of the most rewarding degrees that we offer include: 

Nursing (RN to BSN)

If things like patient care, rehabilitation, clinical decision-making, and working with various healthcare technologies interest you as a registered nurse, signing up for a Bachelor of Science in Nursing at New England Tech would be a good idea.

Nursing RN to BSN

This fully online degree program splits into seven terms and typically takes 18-24 months to complete. Voted as one of the best online nursing degree programs, the RN to BSN program features small class sizes, delivers a fantastic mix of theoretical and practical training, and equips you to pursue leadership positions in the workplace.

Interior Design, BS

If your mind can visualize a space with beautiful aesthetics, colors, fabric, furniture, art, and designs, then interior designing might be for you. Interior designers are in high demand to craft aesthetically appealing environments and personality-defining spaces.

A Bachelor of Science Degree in Interior Design from NEIT is one of the best interior design programs in Rhode Island. It equips you theoretically and practically to integrate the advances in building science and technology into the creative design process to build beautiful spaces.

After completing the course, you can become a commercial interior designer, restaurant interior designer, or home stager, among other potential career opportunities.

Software Engineering, BS

Learn popular programming languages and gain unparalleled experience in database, web and mobile design, web development, and implementation with NEIT’s Bachelor of Science in Software Engineering.

While a typical degree like this takes four years to complete, you can accelerate your education and complete it within three years at New England Tech.

Software engineering degree

With a degree in software engineering, you can explore positions like software developer, systems engineer, IT analyst, web programmer, and database specialist.

Architectural Building Engineering Technology, BS

Along with an aesthetic appeal, buildings are expected to be designed with rigorous standards of safety, material, environment, and construction. An amalgamation of science, technology, and art.

The Bachelor of Science degree in Architectural Building Engineering Technology at NEIT helps you learn advanced topics such as structural engineering, environmental design, sustainability, mechanical systems, construction law, and more.

In as little as 18 months, you can choose to become a drafter, structural designer, project manager, or CAD engineer. You can also pursue additional education and licenses to become an architect.

Know the difference between architecture and architectural technology.

Cybersecurity and Network Engineering, BS

Tackle critical threats and learn the best practices in the design of secure, modern networks and how to protect computers and network systems with NEIT’s Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity and Network Engineering.

The degree program combines security theory and hands-on practice by touching upon key courses like computer systems, mobile and network forensics, Windows and Linux security, incident response, evolving threats, and security tools.

Cyber security and networking BS degree

As a graduate of this degree program, you will become eligible to take CompTIA Security +, Network+, Cisco Certified Network Associate Certification (CCNA), and Microsoft Certified System Administrator (MCSA) exams.

Students can also assume positions like cybersecurity analyst, digital forensics specialist, network engineer, systems administrator, incident response specialist, vulnerability management specialist, and LAN manager. For a typical six-term curriculum, you can complete the degree requirements in as little as 18 months.

Game Development and Simulation, BS

Let’s get serious about games. These are a whole other level of immersive worlds that explore, develop and share art, ideas, and skills. While it is possible to launch a career in this field without a degree, a college experience – both theoretically and practically develops and sharpens your knowledge about various facets of gaming.

A Bachelor’s Degree in Game Development and Simulation Programming from NEIT furnishes students’ knowledge to become professional programmers working in visual arts, audio-video technology, or the simulation industry.

You will learn the latest techniques and advanced programming, including algorithms and data structures, artificial intelligence, 2D and 3D graphics programming, development life cycle from design to production, game mathematics, and more. 

Criminal Justice, BS

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, jobs in criminal justice will see a five percent spike in growth between 2019 and 2029 (faster than the average projected for most other careers). 

This includes jobs like crime scene investigator, detective, probation officer, digital forensics specialist, correctional treatment specialist, state trooper, insurance claim investigator, private security officer, and border patrol agent.

Criminal justice BS

By completing New England Tech’s degree program in criminal justice, you can work in the law enforcement system by taking courses in domestic terrorism, ethics, financial and white-collar crimes, corporate and private security, and more.

Electrical Engineering Technology, BS

Our world runs on electricity and electronics. As a graduate in electrical engineering technology, you can pursue a career in various industries such as construction/engineering, process/manufacturing, telecommunications, IT, energy, and building intelligent systems.

NEIT’s Electrical Engineering Technology Bachelor’s (ELTB) program will help you implement and apply the principles of electrical engineering and develop the ability to think critically, communicate effectively, and solve problems independently, using modern tools of the discipline.

The ELTB program at NEIT is accredited by the Engineering Technology Accreditation Commission of ABET, making it the ideal choice for studying this bachelor’s course.

Business Management, BS

Designed to help you learn the nuances of managing the various business processes and operations of an organization, this degree program focuses on a wide range of technical, analytical, and people skills. And it isn’t all classroom training either – some degree credits require you to get hands-on experience through internships, too.

With this comprehensive degree program, you can explore various roles, including office manager, sales manager, human resources manager, financial analyst, marketing manager, project manager, business analyst, department supervisor, customer service manager, accounting analyst, etc.

Business management BS

You can also choose from a range of other bachelor’s courses that NEIT offers for working adults, such as automotive and marine technologies, digital media and web design, mechanical engineering, healthcare management, etc.

Working adults can easily adapt to the learning requirements at the New England Institute of Technology and explore entrepreneurship opportunities upon completing this degree program.

The online college also offers comprehensive accelerated online degree programs for working adults in architectural technology, construction management, interior design, automotive service management, engineering technology, data science, digital media production, and video game design and development.

Degree programs for adult learners at New England Tech provide students with an opportunity to assume entry-level positions in the respective industries and qualify them to pursue master’s degree programs in the subject.

Want to know more about our online degrees or online college options for working adults? Explore all of NEIT’s adult degree programs and online degree options.


Earn your degree from NEIT and begin your new career path today!




Access to Resources, Financial Aid, and Scholarships for Working Adults

Adult learners or adult students have unique needs, and there are many resource guides online that can help you fast-track your school search, compare online programs, and help you earn an online degree if you want to go back to college.

One of the most important considerations for adult learners is the cost of pursuing and completing a bachelor’s degree program.

The United States Department of Education’s website provides ample information and resource guides that explain the various federal, state, and private scholarships, grants, and financial help options available for adult students to complete their accelerated degree programs.

Working adults or non-traditional students may find it difficult to pay for their online degrees, given the financial burden of education along with their other responsibilities. Working adults are eligible for federal aid while pursuing degree programs online. It’s important to know what kind of aid works best in your case.

You can explore partner programs, scholarships, federal grants, loans, and more through New England Tech’s Financial Aid Office to find what suits you the best.

You can meet our Financial Aid Officer in person to understand what works for your unique set of circumstances and get help with completing your FAFSA application.

Learn more about financial aid, partner programs, and scholarships for working adults wishing to pursue an online degree program at NEIT.

Parting Thoughts on Degrees and Partner Programs for Adults

For working adults who want to go back to school, adult degree programs, partner programs, or online degree programs are a great way to make strides in their existing career or initiate a career change. When it comes to degree completion programs, you must consider all the different options available before deciding what you want to pursue.

There is a wide range of accelerated degree programs, online degree programs, and partner programs that can help working adults earn a degree in no time. Still, it’s important your school search introduces you to programs that can cater to both your learning needs and career objectives. 

Look for colleges, degrees, and programs that offer flexibility, a good balance between theoretical and practical learning, and networking opportunities.

If you are still confused about which degrees are the best for working adults, what degree option to choose, which program is right for you, or which college will best support working adults’ needs, head to our Career Counselling page.

New England Tech is proud to provide a healthy learning atmosphere for students. It is one of the most preferred institutes for working adults and offers degrees that align with their busy schedules. Request more information to learn how NEIT can help you achieve your career goals.


Earn your degree from NEIT and begin your new career path today!





How much money do people make with an adult education degree?

The potential salary figure is dependent on variables like the specialization or major you choose, whether you are an entry-level professional or an experienced one, etc. As is the case with any profession, you can increase your earning potential as you gain more experience in the field.

What can you do with a degree in adult education?

Many colleges offer accelerated degree programs for working adults that help you earn a degree, make a career change, or advance further in your current profession. You can either access an entirely new field of work after completing your online program or be better poised for a promotion and pay raise at your existing workplace.

What are the requirements for a degree in adult education?

Adults, or anyone for that matter, require a high school diploma to become eligible for enrollment at the degree level. Some schools might allow adult learners to carry over previously earned college credits as well. You can check out the respective degree programs for working adults to understand the degree level requirements and eligibility criteria.

What are the best adult education degrees?

The best college degree program options for working adults include bachelor’s degrees in nursing, business management, cybersecurity, software engineering, and criminal justice.

Some of the other popular degree programs for working adults include architectural technology, construction management, engineering technology, automotive service management, digital media production, interior design, and video game design and development.