Cynthia Sullivan
Written By - Cynthia Sullivan

Check MarkEdited By Darryl S.

Check MarkReview & Contribution By Dr. Edmund Moyer

An online master’s program is challenging, to say the least. That’s why it helps prospective master’s students to have a wealth of information, advice and assistance. This resource guide focuses on a variety of points that are important for those in a master’s program, such as financial aid, accreditation, examinations, where to find help, and so much more. Read on to discover the resources needed to make the most of the journey through starting an online master’s degree program.

Resources for Online Master’s Students

Table Of Contents

Financial Aid for Graduate Students

There are numerous options for financial aid for those pursuing a master’s degree. The following links provide prospective grad students with all the information they need to start planning how they’re going to afford a top-notch education.

  • Pursue a vast variety of scholarships for master’s students.
  • Edvisors. This resource offers a complete rundown of the different types of financial aid available, including tuition payment plans, and other alternative ways of paying for school.
  • Federal Student Aid. The official government hub for federal financial aid including the gateway to fill out the all-important Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA ®). If you FAFSA application is denied or if your award amount is not enough, read more about FAFSA Appeals.
  • National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (NASFAA). This resource provides in-depth information on financial aid, including what to expect from the state, federal tax breaks available for use of certain financial aid instruments, and much more.
  • Sallie Mae. Many online master’s program students will go to school on student loans. Sallie Mae is the center point for loan-based aid.
  • Another huge scholarship and grant site, master’s students are sure to find a large variety of financial aid help here.
  • Student Loan Calculator. Not sure what a student loan will really cost? This handy calculator can help prospective grad students figure it out.
  • Student Loan Hero. Want to learn about how student loans work? Student Loan Hero will help answer master’s students most pressing questions.
  • Scholarships for Women
  • Scholarships Scams

Examinations and Certifications: Prep Resources for Master’s Students

Before entering into a master’s program, prospective students might be required to take certain entrance exams. When they graduate from an online program, they might be looking into required examinations that will move them into licensure for their chosen profession. Or they might want certifications that, while not necessary for licensure, work well to enhance and further their career. These links can help students get started.

  • ETS: Education Testing Services (ETS) is the company that administers the GRE. Here students will find details about the GRE General Test, as well as information on the subject tests.
  • Kaplan: Kaplan is well-known for a wide variety of study guides and preparation classes. Though some can be pricey, others are free, like some parts of the GRE prep.
  • Khan Academy: These free videos help students hone their knowledge of academic subjects. Their prep tests can be very helpful.
  • LSAC (Law School Admission Council): The LSAC administers the LSAT and the Credential Assembly Service. Prep materials, law school forums and more are also available here.
  • Manhattan Mae: Preparation services through this well-known company have varying prices, but they allow the first session of any class for free. There are also several free resources.
  • This comprehensive website focuses on the GMAT exam.
  • Peterson’s MCAT Prep: This preparation for the MCAT offers very affordable practice tests to get you started.
  • Princeton Review’s GRE Self-Paced: The Princeton Review is a solid name in tutorial and study materials. The GRE is just one of the many programs offered to help students prepare for examinations.

Special Interest Schools for Online Graduate Students

For some students, it’s important to attend a college or master’s program with those who have similar interests and backgrounds. Perhaps they want to have a more open, liberal educational experience. Or, they would prefer a school with a strong religious foundation. Maybe their looking for a program or school that caters to their unique experiences, such as dealing with poverty or being a person of color. To that end, special interest schools might be something to consider. Below are a variety of special interest school options for master’s programs (keep in mind, this is a limited list. There are many more!).

Historically Black Colleges and Universities Offering Online Master’s Programs

Best Schools for Online Master’s LGBTQ Students

Top Christian Schools for Online Graduate Students

Most Affordable Online Master’s Programs

Best Online Master’s Programs

Fastest Online Masters Programs

Easiest Online Masters Programs

One-Year Online Masters Programs

Online Masters Programs, No GRE

The Ins and Outs of Online Learning for Master’s Students

What can grad students expect from the day-to-day work in their online master’s program? Maybe they want to know the differences between synchronous or asynchronous learning, or perhaps they’re curious about the variety of online learning platforms available. Here are some informative resources to help.

  • Blackboard. This is the most common learning management system students will encounter in an online program.
  • How Online Learning Works. This in-depth review of online learning from Penn State World Campus provides a good overview of what to expect from distance education.
  • Learning Management Systems. This ranking of learning management systems provides information on some of the most common formats, like Moodle and Canvas.
  • Skype. This free online communications tool will come in quite handy for students in any online program, whether they use it to talk to professors or peers.
  • Tips for Success in Accelerated Courses. The intensity of accelerated courses might take you by surprise. Here’s what you need to know before diving in.

How to Know if an Online Master’s Program is Accredited

Going to an accredited school means you’re in for a great education. To help you figure out which schools are accredited, check out the links below.

Regional Accreditation

The following accreditors focus on different areas of the country. This is known as regional accreditation.

The Life of an Online Master’s Student

Life as an online grad student isn’t easy. It can sometimes be isolating. It requires some serious discipline and attention to detail. It’s also important to hone those skills early, and the following resources can help prospective master’s students do just that.

Adobe Spark

Students can use this fun, free app to create flashcards via images or text and several other options.

If you’re looking for the ultimate in study tips, this site has a wide variety of offerings to help students.

Pandora Radio – Instrumentals for Studying

Some students need music to accompany their study time and this curated list can be the ideal study partner.

Study Stack

Students and teachers can create flashcards anyone can use. This site is great for sharing with study groups.


Those looking for a time management app can’t go wrong with this one, which can help students organize all the things necessary for a successful online program.

Life of Online Students

Those wanting to understand more about life of online students, read this blog.

Finding Peers in an Online Graduate School Landscape

Connecting with others who are on the same educational journey can be a big boost to morale – not to mention a great source of study buddies. Below are some online resources where grad students can find peers to aid and assist while in an online master’s program.

  • All Nurses. This site is focused on nurses in the healthcare profession including aspiring nurses and seasoned nurses.
  • College Confidential. This site offers forums for all students in college with a dedicated forum for those thinking about or going through a master’s program.
  • Grad-School Life. As part of the Chronicle of Higher Education, this online resource offers in-depth threads for those who are already enrolled in their program.
  • The Grad Café. No matter what graduate program a student is enrolled in, this site helps them find other students who may have similar issues, questions or concerns.
  • The GRE Prep Club Here students will find an active message board discussing all things GRE and other relevant points for master’s students.
  • The Student Doctor Network. Whether a student is currently working on their medical degree or just thinking about it, this site can help them find and chat with like-minded peers.
  • Top Law Schools. This forum provides a wealth of information and advice for those considering, or already enrolled in law school, as well as recent grads.

More Resources