why more and more students are taking online classes
For many people, when they think of online learning they associate it with working adults or students with disabilities. But with internships, part-time jobs and other commitments, a growing number of traditional students are choosing to take online courses in addition to courses in the traditional classroom setting. And colleges and universities are beginning to recognize and cater to this trend. The availability and variety of online courses for both traditional and nontraditional students is increasing steadily, and colleges are doing everything in their power to make these courses as accessible as possible for all students. Odessa College, a community college in Odessa, Texas, is one institution that has implemented an online learning program, OC Global, geared toward all types of students. The driving principle behind the OC Global program is that all students learn at their own paces. That way, if students need to leave school in the middle of a semester for personal reasons, they can accelerate or slow down their courses in order to reconcile their personal lives with the demands of college courses. Odessa also offers four dates within the semester when students can register for a course, so if they miss the first registration deadline, they donБt have to wait an entire semester to enroll in courses they need. Though Odessa offers a number of degree programs that can be earned completely online, traditional students can also enroll in online courses as part of the OC Global program. БOur focus is on the core courses so that students of any major can participate,Б said Corey Davis, OC GlobalБs executive director. That way, traditional students can take major-specific courses in person and complete general requirements online, said Davis. Other universities offer general education requirements online as well, and many traditional students take advantage of this option, despite the fact that it often comes at an additional cost. Valerie Zefiretto, a recent graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, said that completing her political science and economics requirements online was helpful in completing her graphic design major.
Zefiretto said that online courses allow students to complete assignments at times that work with each studentБs personal schedule, leaving them with more time to work at off-campus jobs and internships. Language courses are also common online courses at traditional universities, especially introductory courses. Students learn at their own paces and still have access to a live professor for office hours and additional help with homework. Another factor behind OdessaБs program is alleviating costs. The OC Global program uses open source textbooks and course materials to reduce student expenses and make college courses available to as many people as possible. This trend, too, is on the rise in America Б the Massachusetts Institute of Technology has also begun an open source project to reduce the cost of student textbooks. БSome courses lend themselves better to this than others,Б Davis admits. БBut itБs essential to keeping the cost down. Б
According to Davis, students at Odessa frequently enrolled in courses but wouldnБt purchase the required textbooks because they couldnБt afford them. The use of high-quality, free content became an essential part of the OC Global program so that all Odessa students could participate regardless of their financial statuses. With online courses becoming more accessible to students than ever before, students can take advantage of outside activities and enroll in courses they may not have been able to take otherwise. American InterContinental University offers a career-focused education for students interested in taking the next step in their professional lives. What are 5 advantages of online college courses? More and more students are turning to online courses for a variety of reasons, but here are some of the best reasons to pursue online education: Convenience. With online courses, you can read and study during the times of the day when you re at your most productive, instead of when the registrar says you should be.
And if you find that you re truly overwhelmed with balancing the workload and your other commitments, you can reach out to your instructor or academic advisor for pointers on how to catch up to your classmates and make up lost time. However, keep in mind that for some people, the convenience of online courses can quickly turn into a disadvantage; if you re not good at organizing and managing your time and commitments, online courses may not be for you. But if you are willing to buckle down and do your work on time, the convenience of online learning can allow you to earn your degree without sacrificing your other commitments. Control. Aside from the time management aspects, with some online courses, you have more control of the learning process, meaning you can learn more at your own pace. You have the freedom to skim subjects you know well from other courses or from work experience and instead spend more time concentrating on other material you re having a hard time grasping. But for this to be a true advantage, of course, you must be honest with yourself about what you know and what you don t know. If you truly know a topic inside and out, you can complete your course work early and skip ahead to review other topics. In addition, if you ever need to review something, most learning platforms will have all lectures and notes from previous topics easily available for you to look over. Connection. Online courses are interactive, which means that just like in a traditional classroom, you will get feedback from your instructors and peers, and possibly even more individualized attention as well. With distance learning, you are immediately connected with students from all over the world, and this can greatly enhance your learning process and experience, opening your mind to a variety of viewpoints. In fact, diversity of cultures and opinions can lead to a greater learning experience, and unlike in most traditional classrooms where the student demographic is limited by geography, the online classroom s student body is not, allowing you the chance to meet more people who grew up and live in circumstances different from yours.
And because all your materials will be in one place everything you need will be at your fingertips when it s time to communicate with teachers or fellow students. Cost. Online courses can be less expensive than traditional courses, particularly if you re not financially or otherwise ready to pursue a full. You can save money on travel, books, and possibly even food by living at home and continuing your current lifestyle instead of paying extra to move to a campus or to drive to one. In addition, online students from accredited programs may also be eligible for financial aid, so speak with a financial advisor at a school you re interested in to see what aid options are available to you. However, keep in mind that not all online schools are cheaper than traditional ones due to varying credit costs and requirements, so do your research before enrolling. Commitment. No matter what class you re taking, one of the most important lessons you will learn from taking online courses is how to commit to something and follow through. While traditional classrooms require commitment as well, students of online classes must typically be much more self-motivated to succeed because there are no teachers or classmates physically present to pressure you into completing your work or participating in class discussions. Instead, in an online class, you must be responsible and manage your time and resources effectively and efficiently all on your own. You are the one who decides when to come to class, when to complete assignments, and when to study for exams and quizzes. But all of that will benefit your personal growth and sense of responsibility, and although that may not be a major reason you choose to pursue online education, the enhancement of your sense of commitment is a definite advantage to taking online courses. Find Courses!
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