TODAY | September 25, 2013
>>> the kids are back in school and you're ready to shake things up but figuring out what you want to do is often harder than making the decision to do.
>> we have help to get you started, author of "the adult student," insider's guide of going back to school and sharon epperson is cnbc's professional correspondent.
>> a lot of people want to go back to school and that can be a daunting idea for people, can't it?
>> it can be. you have to figure out how much time you have in your day, an empty nester versus someone with a preschooler will have different times available.
>> whether you can afford it, whether the degree will be worth it, the certificate or whatever you're going back for.
>> and technology has probably changed a lot since you went to school last time. you better be up-to-date on those kinds of skills.
>> absolutely. be up-to-date on those kinds of skills and you may choose to take the course online as well.
>> you see a lot of those online degrees advertised on tv. are those -- not legitimate but something an employer would look at and say, great, you went there. that's fine.
>> certainly in the past they may have -- in the last five years, it's largely been removed, thankfully. state schools and community colleges have programs online and a lot of for-profit online institutions are regionally accredited now, the same standard as a traditional school .
>> costs a lot less, don't it?
>> less, and what you need to focus on is the skills you need to get. whether you're getting them from an online course , community college , you want to get the skills and show you're marketable in whatever it is you want to do. that's the main point.
>> i want to go back and do something. where is there a need for employees?
>> there's always a need for health care . all that we're talking about with the changes, definitely a growing field, technology. then you might think this is a little wonky. accounting. people want account ants. there are creative jobs out there, social media marketing.
>> right. can you get loans for school? how do you go about doing that?
>> just as you would with traditional college, you can get a student loan . a lot of these online colleges have self funding, 0% interest, which is beneficial. and for traditional education applies for online education .
>> same things we tell people to do to apply to college in general you need to do. that main thing is to get that federal form filled out, free application for federal student aid . start there. a lot of the loans you're going to get from the government as well as the institutions are going to come, based on what you put on that form. that's a key place to start.
>> we're hearing so much lately about how is it worth the cost of education to get that degree? let's have you back and you can talk about that.
>> find the scholarships that are