Distance learning — especially given the advances of high definition video conferencing — has long been touted as a way to augment conventional educational techniques, Wired reports.

Increasingly, though, it’s worth considering whether it might even be a valuable substitute for a traditional college degree.

Consider the skyrocketing costs of college tuition. For the last 30 years it had been taken for granted that you got a college degree to earn more money throughout your career.

Now, however, the student debt problem has escalated dramatically in America. The Federal Reserve Bank of New York reports $902 billion in outstanding nationwide student loan debt,...

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