Education has changed a lot in the last decade.
No longer do people have to sit in a classroom while listening to their teacher’s lecture. Online classes have replaced the traditional setting for learning, and in my opinion, it’s amazing. That’s not to say there’s anything wrong with taking in person classes, there isn’t. It’s completely dependent on the person and what they’re specifically looking to achieve.
Personally, it wasn’t until I graduated college that I started thinking about virtual education. I decided to get my Master of Arts completely online and so far, my experience has been outstanding. In person and online classes are very different and there are positives and negatives to both.
Here are some of the benefits you might find when pursing your education completely online:
Online students can take classes at different times throughout the semester. Some classes might be the usual 15-16 weeks, while other’s might be 4 or 5 weeks. We are able
to pick classes that fit around our schedule. Personally, I’ve taken a lot of 4-5 week courses in an attempt to get done with the program faster. That’s the beauty of online education, you’re on your own time clock.
Most people think that getting a degree online, takes away that sense of community. That’s not necessarily true. I have had teachers who upload videos of themselves lecturing to us, their online students, in an attempt to interact. Discussion boards are also very popular within online classes. They allow us to converse back in forth with our classmates throughout the class. And don’t forget about group work, it still exists within virtual education. We can meet up with our classmates in person, on the phone, or via Skype. There’s plenty of interaction!
We can study and do homework wherever we want, as long as we’re connected to wifi! We can take a test at Starbucks or turn in a paper while laying in our beds, it doesn’t matter. I can’t tell you how nice it is to not have to worry about getting to class on time (or even going to class at all, for that matter).
For me, the best part about taking online classes is making my own schedule. Most classes provide you with a syllabus that tells you, in detail, when everything is due. If I want, I can sit down on a Sunday and crank out 2 weeks of homework… or, the entire class (if I’m really feeling motivated and incredibly energetic). The point is, the only schedule you’re on is yours!
Hopefully I’ve cleared up any concerns or preconceived notions you might have about online school. I’m not saying it’s for everyone. But if you’re working full time, raising a family, have other responsibilities or just don’t want to drive to school everyday – online education might be right for you.