If you have a child who is looking to get a college education soon, whether they’ve recently completed high school studies or have been in the workforce for a while and now want to pursue an advanced degree, you have probably been looking into the various universities in your local area and further afield.
If your teen or young adult is like many others of their age, they may want to have that “fun college experience” that’s so often depicted in movies, and may be looking for some independence away from home too.
However, it’s also important to think about whether or not online study might be a better fit for your child and your family’s circumstances. On-campus learning does not suit everyone, after all, and can also cost a lot more for students and/or their families because of the cost of living away from home. If you’re keen to find out more, read on for some benefits of online learning that you and your child should think about today.
One of the primary benefits of completing an online degree is that it can save you a significant amount of money. After all, attending even the most affordable college can quickly become very pricey for parents to cover once dorm fees, meal costs, travel expenses, campus fees, parking expenses, and the like are added up. Choosing an online education, though, can save money because children can continue to live at home rather than needing to relocate to pursue their degree.
Often you’ll also find that online learning is less expensive than in-person studies because universities and other educational facilities don’t have to spend so much on having professors teach the same classes again and again. Instead, classes can be designed, then presented online once, and after that simply repeated for different student intakes. As such, you may find that you can spend less money per credit on an online course.
In addition, oftentimes students can reduce the total time spent on finishing a course when they study online, because they can devote more time than is factored in for in-person tutorials and classes. As a result, this can mean that children are out in the workforce more quickly, earning money and not needing to be provided for by their parents.
Learn at Own Pace and More Effectively
Another great benefit of online learning is that when students study their courses online they can learn at their own pace. Many people struggle to digest information properly when it is presented by professors during classes, when there are many distractions, when it can be hard to hear, or when teachers speak very quickly or not thoroughly enough on topics.
On the other hand, with online courses students can re-read information, or repeat videos or other lesson types as often as they’d like until they understand the information. They can take each part of a course bit by bit, as slowly as they need, according to their personal requirements.
Most online courses also have tutors available to ask questions of whenever needed, plus other types of individual support as required. This means that each student enjoys equal access to instructors and aid.
Many students will find it easier, too, to ask tutors they likely will never meet questions they feel are “dumb,” than professors they have to see regularly in on-campus classes. This in turn leads to a better quality of learning and a better retention rate of knowledge for students.
Another way in which online learning can be more effective is that it can better address the different ways in which people learn. New technology means that instructors can these days create more exciting ways to deliver information online; conversely, professors presenting in person are typically just speaking for an hour or more at a time, in a lecture hall with hundreds of students. Online classes can better suit people who are visual, auditory, or kinesthetic learners.
For many people, the stand-out feature of online learning is how flexible it is. For those students who want to start working full-time or part-time while they study, the ability to take classes at any time of the day or night, rather than having to turn up to scheduled in-person classes during the work day, is a big plus.
The same goes for young parents who have children to consider, and who may very likely struggle to fit in classes at set times. Instead, with online courses, they can simply complete studies whenever they have the time available.
Many students also want to not only complete an undergraduate degree, but to also go on to get their Master’s or Ph.D. qualifications. For these people, it might be daunting to think about spending so long on education without also gaining some experience in the workforce and some resulting income.
By utilizing the flexible nature of online learning though, students can starting building up much-needed workplace skills while still completing all the higher degrees they might wish for, from the best online MBA programs to top qualifications in areas such as law, marketing, economics, computer science, or any other specialty like a Masters in TESOL.
No matter what type of degree your child is interested in studying, it is worth considering if they would be better suited to an online course rather than on-campus enrolment. As well, factor in your family’s financial and other needs to see if online learning could be a better fit all round.