There are a lot of rumors swirling around online education. What can I expect? What do the programs look like? Is it even a legitimate option? It’s only natural to be skeptical if you’ve never experienced it. That said, this new frontier of education is worth exploring and there are several myths we can clear up for our readers. These are some facts and fictions you need to know before enrolling in an online program.
FACT: Online education provides the same quality of education as traditional education.
While there are still skeptics out there who don’t believe in online education, the fact is that a virtual classroom is just as good as a traditional classroom. Those who have the self determination and self drive to motivate themselves through online programs demonstrate a level of commitment that other students may not necessarily possess so the quality of their studies is not diminished. Since students who are enrolled online are able to work and study at their own pace they can learn in a way that is most effective for them. This allows them to have the same quality of education as any other student.
FICTION: Online education is for young adults or teenagers.
This is a huge assumption made on the premise that because something is being offered online, younger generations are drawn to it. And sure, there are plenty of students enrolled online who are in their late teens/early twenties, but the fact is that 40.9% of students enrolled online are 30+ years of age. This is because adults in this age range are drawn to the flexibility that online programs have to offer. Often online students are already working or parenting so the need for flexibility when pursuing higher education is critical.
FACT: Employers are becoming increasingly accepting of online education.
Prospective students are sometimes wary of online education programs because they worry that future employers may not accept or value their online degree. The fact of the matter is that employers are not only accepting of online degrees, but they are becoming increasingly aware of and impressed by those who choose online programs. Why? Because those who pursue online education demonstrate that they value their field of work and have the self determination and drive to both work and advance their education. Employers recognize this and value employees who have this kind of work ethic.
FICTION: Online education is more affordable than traditional education.
While many people seek online education to save on expenses, the cost of the course itself is often the same price as enrolling in a traditional, face-to-face classroom. However, online students do report that virtual classrooms help reduce the cost of education by saving expenses on things like commuting or on campus housing which makes a significance difference in the long run. Further, the ability to be flexible allows students to work while enrolled in classes allowing online students to make money while in school which can really help with overall financial wellness.
FACT: Online education allows students to transfer credits.
Some 80% of online undergraduate students are able to transfer credits from previous college courses. This is important because it can help fast track a student’s ability to complete a program is previous coursework is able to be transferred. Those considering online education, and also have college course work from previous schooling, will be happy to know they are not starting over when considering online education. Rather, they may have the ability to pick up where they left off.
FICTION: All online courses are the same.
This is a common and problematic myth that surrounds online education. Not all online programs and courses are created equal. The fact is that some programs are reputable while others are a scam. The best way to avoid this problem is to find an accredited institution. It’s critical to find an online institution if you want to have a successful online experience. An accredited institution will be recognized by future employers, offer support to students, and provide a high quality level of education.