Until recent times, further education was a problem for many people. Busy lifestyles and demanding jobs meant that individuals could not commit to attending night school at the same time each week. Daytime classes were completely out of the question. However, the growth of the Internet has started to change options as well as attitudes. There are now many distance learning online courses to chose from, ranging from certificate to doctorate courses.
The big advantage of distance learning online courses is that you do not have to physically attend classes to improve your education. You become an online student instead. So they are ideal for people who are in full time employment. It is important to note though that it has brought the famous universities to you. You don’t have to relocate to study at Oxford or Cambridge in the United Kingdom or Harvard in the United States. You can enrol for distance learning courses at many famous universities, provided you pass their entry requirements.
Distance learning online courses are not an easy option though. It is true that they are more accessible for many people. However, the universities do maintain academic rigour with these courses. A distance learning degree is on a par with a degree studied full time.
Flexibility is the name of the game with distance learning courses. There are generally minimum and maximum time frames in which work has to be completed. Many people try to keep on top of their studies and complete them as quickly as possible, but have that reassurance of knowing that if a domestic problem arises them can ease right off with their studies until the problem has been sorted. Many students report in their feedback that it is this flexibility which is the greatest benefit of distance learning online courses.
You may be thinking online courses may well be flexible but what about the quality of the tuition. The answer is that in many cases the online student gets more attention than a student who attends traditional classes. When you enrol online you are allocated a tutor who you are able to keep in touch with constantly. You have ‘one to one’ access. Whereas in a traditional class there are generally too many students for the tutor to give much time to individual tuition.
The benefits of distance learning
The first benefit and for many it is the biggest benefit is that distance learning is not as expensive as the traditional method of attending college. Most institutions offer flexible payment options so you should be able to work out a plan which fits in with your budget.
A second benefit of distance learning is psychological. It gives you the opportunity to develop in ways that you could have missed out on in the past. This leads to increased confidence and increases your marketability to prospective employers or even give you the impetus to start your own business.
The third benefit of distance learning is of convenience as mentioned earlier. For many people once they have started to study online they carry on taking higher level courses or studying a topic just for the sake of learning itself. Whatever the reason there has never been a better time for going back to college and you can thank the Internet for that.
Distance learning is not for everyone so you need to decide if it is for you. You need to have a learning style that would work with this style of education. If you are good at motivating yourself and are self disciplined, that is, you can keep to deadlines then you are ideally suited to distance learning. If you need to be pushed along or are easily distracted from what you should be doing then distance learning may not be your cup of tea. In this case the traditional method of attending classes may be best so that you can get the ‘face to face’ support you require.