Since there are so many online schools around these days, students have even more options for furthering their education. People who have jobs find online schools appealing as it allows them to keep their jobs without making any major changes. However, this does not mean that choosing between studying on campus or online is an easy choice. When trying to decide between the two, it makes sense to look at the similarities and differences. Your career choice and finances will also play a role in your decision.
This is one of the biggest selling points for online degrees. Many people like the fact that they can generally set their class time for the time most convenient to them. When you are on campus, you do not have this flexibility. If you miss a class online, it is generally easier to catch up as many programs have online forums where class notes are uploaded. Of course, with advances with technology, this is now possible with many campus-based programs as well.
The downside to online learning flexibility however, is that some people end put putting off their classes and assignments for too long. By doing this, some students take much longer to complete their courses. If you are working and your job does not have flexible hours and you are good at time management, then online classes could be the right thing for you. Some people prefer the strict format of campus based learning as it challenges them to work harder. When you do classes online, you will have to motivate yourself.
Details on any course of study are important if you want the best value for your investment. Make comparisons between the course curriculum for both online and campus-based schools. The online program should offer the same or similar subjects as campus-based programs of the same course. If important areas or major differences exist, look at other online schools or select a traditional brick and mortar school.
There is no doubt that most online programs are cheaper than studying on campus. Online schools generally do not charge as much as other universities for the same course of study. Also, you don’t have to worry about expenses like staying on campus or traveling to school. Overall, however, most online students are happy with the fact that they can save money on their education.
Interacting with others
If working with other students face to face is important to you online learning might not be suitable for you. This is one of the drawbacks to studying online. You will only be able to keep in touch with other students and the lecturer by email, web conference or by text. Some students have no problem with this, but others may find it difficult.
Access to technology
For online learning to be successful, you need to have the necessary tools to participate in the classes. If you do not own a computer and have no Internet access, learning online will be difficult. When you attend a campus, some of these challenges are less. You have to think about the expense of getting a good computer and access to the Internet if you want to study online. Alternately, you need to have a reliable alternative such as a library. On the other hand, even if you have to pay a computer and get Internet access, it may be still be cheaper than paying for a campus-based program.
In the past, many online schools had trouble getting accreditation. These days, this is not such a major issue. Most accreditation bodies recognize most online schools. In addition, many online schools are affiliated to or are extensions of established traditional universities. This means you can get a valid degree by studying online, but it makes sense to research the school first. Choosing between online or a campus for your studies is a personal decision. Take the time to explore your options so that you will make the best possible choice.
Online Degrees- Futuristic Learning, or Scams
Since the year 2008, there has been a steady increase in the number of online degrees offered. Such a supply is complimented by an ever-increasing demand from students all over the world. There are upsides and downsides attached to this form of education. So before you decide whether you would like to pursue your degree in the online world or in a brick-and-mortar classroom, here are a few things you should keep in mind.
Pros of Online Degrees
Quite apparently, there are several benefits associated with online degrees. For instance;
Convenience at Its Best
Online degrees offer the best of every form of convenience. You are not bound to reach a specific location at a specific time. All you need to do is login from your computer and attend the classes as and when you desire – even if it means at midnight in your pajamas!
You may be living in a place where colleges and universities may not be easily accessible. Online degrees make sure you do not need to sacrifice your academic desires in face of such a crisis. It also saves you from relocation costs that would be incurred if you choose to move to another place near your college.
Interacting With Students from Anywhere In the World
The internet has made it possible for people from all over the world to come together on a common platform and indulge in a shared academic experience. So regardless of where on earth you and your classmates are located, you will always be able to interact with each other and learn about the various cultures and traditions celebrated in different parts of the world.
No Discrimination – Equal Opportunity
Online education programs do not require you to share your background information, picture or any other personal information that may be used against you. Hence, no discrimination is practiced. Online degrees provide equal learning opportunities to all those who are enrolled in the program.
Setting Your Own Pace
Cannot keep up with the pace being followed? You can always alter it to your convenience. This means taking classes more frequently or the converse. You get to set the pace/frequency of classes most suitable for you.
Less Expensive (Parking, Housing and Food Expenses)
Online education is comparably less expensive than traditional classroom education. This is because a major cost of the classrooms is eliminated from the tuition fees. Moreover, you are able to save quite a significant amount of money in the form of transportation expenses, food and housing costs and other similar expenditures.
Interactive Learning Environment
Online education involves the use of interactive mediums like presentations, videos and other similar resource material. Therefore, you get to experience a high quality interactive learning environment. This not only improves your academic experience, it also ensures you are able to retain more of what you learn.
Cons of Online Degrees
There are a few downsides of online degrees.
You do not get to enjoy campus life. This restricts your networking opportunities – with your professors as well as other students. You cannot meet them physically which proves to be a major drawback in improving relationships. Moreover, you are devoid of campus experiences that are a part and parcel of college life learning.
Waiting on Feedback
It is very difficult for you to get prompt responses. If you have a question, you do not get to raise your hand and ask. Instead, you need to drop an email which will be answered at the convenience of your professor. Consequently, this may mean delayed feedbacks and hence impaired learning.
Technology is not always blissful. Technological menaces like corrupted operating software, power failure, damage to hard disk and/or other computer parts and other similar problems do exist. Consequently, it diminishes your ease of acquiring education.
If you would like to have your credit hours transferred to an ongoing degree, you may be faced with problems and/or a straightforward rejection. There are credibility issues associated with online education that makes it difficult to trust such qualifications. Consequently, accreditation issues may arise, posing significant threat to the viability of online education.
Self-Discipline Is The Key!
You cannot pursue an online degree unless you are self-disciplined. There are no professors and/or classmates to push you through the challenges. Unless you can convince yourself to complete the degree, you might never be able to do so!