Mortuary Science Programs
The American Board of Funeral Service Education (ABFSE) is the national accrediting body for college and university programs in Funeral Service and Mortuary Science Education. They offer a comprehensive directory of accredited funeral service programs in the United States.
Baccalaureate Completion Programs
Many funeral service professionals are joining the rising number of adults going back to school. Choices for completing a four-year degree are more numerous, varied and feasible than ever before. There are a variety of programs other than mortuary science you may want to consider. Whatever path you choose for continuing your education, it is sure to lead you to a more successful future. If you're interested in following this path, here is some information to aid as you research your options:
Frequently Asked Questions
It’s natural to have questions about going back to school. For answers to more specific questions, contact the school you are interested in attending.
Of course, no one can answer this question for you. Returning to college is not easy for anyone with a full-time job; it requires a serious commitment of time, resources and energy. You must consider carefully the challenge of balancing work, family responsibilities, community commitments and other obligations with the demands of college-level coursework. Millions of adults have successfully returned to college for a degree, however! Admissions counselors should be able to help you carefully assess your needs and situation and help you find ways to realize your dream.
Degree-completion programs are designed for working professionals with two or more years of transferable credit from accredited institutions. Individual college and university enrollment requirements vary but a minimum grade-point average and specific prerequisites are required. The maximum amount of transferable, previously earned credits will depend on the type of baccalaureate degree to be completed and other variables; some programs, as noted, might consider prior learning and work experience. Nearly all schools offer part-time options, evening and/or weekend classes, as well as accelerated formats. Mortuary Science, Bachelor of Science completion programs are currently all campus-based, with different requirements.
*Variations are sometimes called “capstone,” two-plus-two or transfer-admission programs
Distance learning is an educational experience via Internet instruction (online learning), prerecorded or live video (one-way or two-way interactive), prerecorded or live audio, video-conferencing or multimedia. Distance learning entails delivery over a distance to individuals in different locations, with the Internet and interactive-video technologies the most common mode of delivery at colleges and universities. Distance learning usually offers flexibility within certain parameters (a course or exam might have a time limit, assignments might have due dates, an instructor might have limited “hours”); coursework should equal on-campus courses in terms of content, expectations and academic diligence.
Degree-completion programs, whatever their form, have the same or similar admission requirements as traditional baccalaureate programs. Among other requirements, you will have to submit official college transcripts and meet certain pre-professional degree requirements. Nearly every college or university Website includes an admissions application (for your inspection and sometimes for submission online), regardless of whether it offers distance-education options. Comparing a number of different college and university application requirements is enlightening for anyone seriously planning to return to school.
The allowable time to complete a degree part-time is usually limited (example: six consecutive semesters).
CLEP is an assessment tool of the College Board, a nonprofit association that works with 3,500 colleges nationwide to provide college admission and assessment services (such as the SAT taken by high-school students for college admission). CLEP gives students the opportunity to demonstrate college-level achievement through exams in undergraduate college courses.
There are a number of self-assessment tools to explore if online learning is best for you. If you are a highly motivated individual, you are a good candidate for success.
Schools typically describe minimum Internet-connection requirements based on the extent of multimedia applications in a course, e.g., applications other than text-based ones, such as the use of video or audio clips. For heavy multimedia-based courses, high-speed Internet access is recommended. Current e-mail accounts and an up-to-date virus-scanning program are often required.
Accreditation is a process to maintain and improve standards of educational institutions and to provide public confidence in the integrity of the school. Accreditation approval is required for eligibility for federal grants and loans, to make credit transfer easy, to meet specific professional standards and for degree recognition. The value of your degree absolutely depends on national accreditation, including degrees earned online. Be certain that the institution you choose is accredited by the national accrediting body for your major.
Step-By-Step Guide for Adults Planning to Return to College
It may help to use a checklist as you plan for going back to school. These are just a few steps you can take to make the transition.
- Consider why you want to return to school: What is your motivation?
- Develop a plan to achieve your educational goals based on your interest, skills and commitments
- Review your plan to see how it will fit into your professional and private lives
- Decide on a college or university and a program meeting your career and educational goals (and your current and long-term schedule)
- Determine whether you must complete any prerequisites before you can begin your coursework
- Determine the cost of education and identify available sources of funding
- Complete all necessary admissions and financial-aid applications
- Attend an orientation session offered by the school. Seek support groups (for nontraditional students, related to your major, etc.)
Source: Adapted from Federal Family Education Loan Program (FFELP) “Mapping Your Future,” through the US Department of Education, Office of Postsecondary Education.
Mortuary Science Schools Offering On-Campus Baccalaureate Degrees
Contact the following schools for more details and specific admission requirements for on-campus degree-completion programs. Currently, there are no online mortuary science baccalaureate degree programs available.
- Cincinnati College of Mortuary Science - Cincinnati, Ohio
- Mount Ida College - Newton, Massachusetts
- Southern Illinois University at Carbondale College of Applied Sciences and Arts, Mortuary Science and Funeral Service - Carbondale, Illinois
- University of Central Oklahoma Department of Funeral Service Education - Edmond, Oklahoma
- University of Minnesota - Minneapolis, Minnesota
- Wayne State University - Detroit, Michigan
Note: The Pittsburgh Institute of Mortuary Science (PIMS) has two-plus-two agreements with three schools, open to PIMS associate-degree graduates.
Directories of Online Baccalaureate Degree Programs
These are just a few of many Internet directories that list college and university online degree programs. Please check directly with your state colleges or universities for any online or multimedia options they may offer.