According to findings based on the responses of 1,300 people in the US, a generational divide is emerging on how online courses are perceived, with 61 per cent of those aged between 18 and 30 saying they believe that a virtual degree provides a similar quality of learning to those offered in traditional settings. The average across all ages was just under 50 per cent.

The survey, conducted by Northeastern University in Massachusetts, also showed that 68 per cent of younger adults believe online degrees will be as recognised and accepted by employers as traditional degrees in the next five to seven years, while the figure across all respondents was 53 per cent.