When you are into your working life, with responsibilities and perhaps a family to support, it doesn’t seem easy to make big changes like enrolling in a career college. You worry who will pay the bills if you take a traditional, full-time course. You wonder how the family will cope with your hours away if you register for evening classes. But many working adults find online learning great for meeting their needs. Here are five ways that online learning makes the life of a career-changing adult learner much easier:
1. You pick your own hours of study
Even if you work irregular shifts, if you have time that you call your own, you can fit in time to learn. The success factor is to plan out in advance, as best you can, when your study hours will fit into your overall schedule. 1 to 3 hours a day is typical for an online course study plan.
2. All the material you need is at your fingertips
Online courses sometimes have textbooks, but often, all your readings, video recordings and course work is online in the learning management system that your school uses to deliver the course. And unlike in-class lectures, you can stop the instruction, and repeat it as much as you want.
3. You are not learning on your own
Even if you are in an individual course and not with a class, meeting with the instructor is easy. Email, screensharing, and course forums provide plenty of opportunity for interaction with other students and the instructor. Often courses are designed so that students get together and learn from each other, study together and do presentations just as you would in a traditional classroom.
4. Online study tools are effective with distance education courses
Great study tools, like Evernote, FreeMind and Google Docs are available for free and work seamlessly with web-based learning materials. Each new tool takes time to become familiar with, but they pay dividends in boosting your productivity, brainstorming ability and collaboration skills. You will never again need to say “the dog ate my homework”!
5. You don’t have to travel to learn
Whether you live in a remote location, have family to look after, or limited means of travel to a traditional campus, there are times that studying from home is just easier. Saving money on transportation, childcare, or even relocation helps reduce the expense of going back to school. And as for the benefits of reducing the upheaval in your home? Priceless.