Is online learning the right choice for me?

Why should students consider a post-secondary education through an online program? There are many, many excellent reasons to at least think about it, without a doubt. Typically, there are two types of students: Those who have just graduated from high school and those who are established adults that are sincerely interested in going back to school to finish their degree or advance in their careers. As everyone’s situation is different, the task of starting an associate degree program or going back to school to earn a graduate degree can be difficult for some. Why, do you ask? Primarily, because life tends to get in the way. Our day-to-day activities dictate how we use our time, what we can afford to do, and what our priorities should be. When considering the choice of online schooling versus the traditional brick and mortar university, you must ask yourself a few tough questions.

Can you stay focused? Online distance learning programs require an enormous amount of self-discipline and willpower. Who is going to make you attend your classes? Nobody, but you! Through online school classes, you must be aware of weekly deadlines, and in most cases, you will have some scheduled online courses to attend. If you’re tempted to slack at all, perhaps you should consider the other option, which is to participate in on-campus classes requiring you to attend classes in person and at a specific time.

Do you feel the need for one-on-one attention from your professor? Or, do you prefer the camaraderie and support of fellow students? If so, you are sure to get that from on-campus attendance. But, did you know you can receive the same attention and mentorship through an online class? Most online schools now offer numerous ways to contact professors, as well as, virtual chat rooms to interact with classmates. However, with online learning, you must not be afraid to speak up and express your concerns when needed.

Have you set aside the time necessary to complete your program successfully? Most online classes will take approximately four to fifteen hours per course, per week. Online class requirements may take up more of your time compared to that required in the traditional on-campus class.

Can you express yourself effectively through written communication? Online coursework and participation will require written skills. If you have restricted written capabilities, perhaps you should brush up on your writing skills before signing on to an online program, as expressing yourself will be an essential part of your learning process. Through online learning, you have the opportunity to think about what you want to relay with a careful choice of words, unlike on-campus classes in which immediate responses are expected.

Are you prepared with the tools you need to complete your online program? An important facet of online distance education is the need for a high-speed and reliable internet connection, not to mention an adequate computer. Other equipment may be necessary, as well.

Perhaps you are concerned about the credibility of an online learning program. Well, don’t be. You will receive the same quality education through an online application as you would at a university in which personal attendance is required. In some cases, online learning can be completed at an accelerated rate; therefore, receiving your degree quicker than the traditional method.

If you are a young student just beginning their college journey or an adult holding down a full-time job and raising a family, here are a few points to consider. Can you commit to an online program? Do you have self-discipline and are you self-motivated? Are you a good communicator? Can you ignore distractions? Are you goal-oriented? And, most importantly, are you a self-starter? If you answered yes to these considerations, you are ready for online schooling. With online learning, you must be your own biggest cheerleader! So, do you think online distance learning is the right choice for you? A genuine commitment to your online program will be the key to your success.

If you would like to learn more about online learning within the field of accounting, check out our selections for the Top 20 Online Accounting Degree Programs.

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Needing some additional help, click on the link below and you will be taken to a terrific infographic to help further answer this question:

How to Tell if Online Education is Right For Me