For many people, online education is a way to get a degree without putting their lives on hold. However, how do you know if you’re ready? Provided is a guideline for skills you might need in order to be successful in online education.
The decision to go back to school is often difficult for a myriad of reasons. Funding may be low, family responsibilities can be overwhelming, or a job is taking up too much of your time. Online schools have become the solution for many. In this manner, students are able to maintain their current employment and various family obligations while still working towards their degree of choice.
But are you ready for an online school? The following checklist can help you determine if online education is going to work for you.
Do you possess adequate computer skills?
Often, online classes require proficiency in Microsoft Office or a similar word processor, online discussion boards, and the ability to download, save, edit, and send various files to and from an instructor. You will also be required to complete research, which would necessitate the ability to perform academic research.
Are you a good reader?
Everyone learns differently. Some learn best by reading or examining visual representations of information, some learn by listening to an instructor, and some learn by doing hands-on activities. However, most online schools will contain quite a bit of written information that you will have to understand and process. This can become a challenge for some students.
How much time do you have to devote to your schoolwork?
Online schools are not simple, easy tasks. They require a lot effort and dedication in order to be successful.
Depending on the number of courses you are planning to take, you should expect to spend a minimum of 5 hours per week on each course.
Are you a self-starter?
With online courses, you usually not required to be present at any kind of lecture or meeting. This means that you must have enough self-discipline to keep up with your coursework. Without regular reminders, it can be easy to fall behind.
Are you good at meeting deadlines?
Often, assignments and due dates will be posted, and you will become responsible for pacing yourself. For example, if you have a five-page paper due in a week, you would need to give yourself at least one day to prepare and outline, one day for research, and depending on your abilities, two or three days to write a first draft. Then, an additional day would be needed to proofread and edit. This is a hypothetical schedule, but you would be required to adhere to a similar schedule to ensure that you are meeting assignment deadlines.
There are several other factors that determine success while attending an online school. Know that it can be done, and there are many options available. You just have to take the plunge!