Times are tough, and every dollar counts, so you guard against getting hustled.
By the same token, because times are tough, you have to do whatever you can to gain a competitive edge in a tight job market. This means you have to go back to school to acquire the knowledge and credentials necessary to give your résumé added sparkle.
Online higher education presents itself as an attractive option when it comes to squaring the circle of thrifty expenditure. "Online college courses are quickly becoming popular," reports a November 27, 2011 Business 2 Community article.
Many people have successfully complete [sic] college online and have furthered their career goals because of it. Television commercials praise the success stories of people who have completed various IT programs and medical programs. Now, even more people are considering advancing their education by taking online college courses.
The ever greater number or matriculants in online degree programs offers a rough sort of gauge on this instructional delivery methods appeal. The Business 2 Community article lists three reasons for the upsurge in enrollment over the past few years:
- Considerable savings - "An online education is typically half the price of a traditional education," the Business 2 Community article reports. "This is because you don’t have to pay for campus fees, meal plans, dorm fees, parking fees and other fees associated with physical colleges. A regular tuition for a community college may cost you approximately $3,000, depending on your degree plan and number of courses. An online education will probably cost you approximately $1,500." Those are certainly some appealingly numbers, especially when you consider the value you stand to realize once you have that diploma in your hand.
- Courses that conform to your schedule - "People who take classes online can skip the morning ritual and go straight to their work," observes the Business 2 Community article. "They do not need to fight through crowds of people, wake up really early and take extensive notes just to pass a test." Life is hectic enough without the added hassle of lecture attendance and exam sitting. Indeed, so convenient has digital distance higher learning proven that it's a wonder more degree seekers don't choose this tack.
- Enhanced quality of learning - Online courses are mostly text-based, giving students all the time they need to digest and understand the information," the Business 2 Community article reports. "There is usually a tutor available to chat at any time for any questions the student may have." Indeed, the article goes on to state that "[s]ome studies show that students who obtained their degree online typically retained more information than students who obtained their degree in an actual college." Distance learners already have the deck stacked against them in so many ways. It's refreshing, then, to see one area where they enjoy an advantage over their residential-learning counterparts.
Of course, the tremendous benefits of online higher education burn as some many lights under bushel baskets, should their virtues go unsung. Some image perception management is certainly in order. Popular notions of digital distance learning involve images of a lone loser at her computer typing in silence – or amidst the chaos of an unruly domestic scene – as she completes an assignment for an instructor whom she'll never meet. The online learner is believed to be socially isolated, in other words.
A November 22, 2011 Techi.com article, however, argues that the distance learner is anything but socially isolated. In fact, she may just find herself the life of the party. "Among the perks of attending an online college is the flexible schedule and leftover time to hang out, read, play video games, or even socialize," it reports.
Socializing is becoming more and more archaic as the Internet seeps into every nook and cranny of our lives; we prefer to online date, text, email, or create Vlogs instead of interacting with others face-to-face. A determined individual, however, may actually use their online education to improve his or her social life.
The Techi.com article goes on to list five reasons why a vibrant social life is closer to hand for online higher education students than for their residential-education compeers:
- Partying hearty 24/7 - "The most obvious way online education can improve your social life is by giving you the time to do so," the Techi.coma article informs readers. "With online classes, schedules can be moved around and study time can be anywhere from 4 AM to 4 PM. It’s your call. Parties can often come to a halt when the designated driver has to leave at midnight due to an early class the next morning, but pursuing an online education will allow you to stay out all night and save your studying for the next afternoon." Online learners find they can outdo even the most irrepressible frat guys when it comes to partying around the clock.
- Breaks can come early and often - "You can pause your online class or open a new tab for a quick break, reading about whatever it is that interests you or looking at stupid ‘funny pictures’ websites," reports the Techi.com article."You can then use this knowledge to impress other people. World events? Yeah, you know about that. That picture of the old lady who was pepper sprayed? Yeah, you saw that, it was messed up." Online higher education affords students to goldbrick without threat of sanction or poor grades. Who wouldn't love that?
- Love is but a click away - "Online education gives you more time to browse those dating sites, which are full of liars and psychos – way more exciting than the average college girl," observes the Techi.com article. "After a number of red flags, you may graduate onto Meetup.com or something a little more likely to have saner people involved." Online higher education students need not suffer the vagaries and accidents of meeting in meatspace. Romantic life becomes, then, as flexible and convenient as school life.
- A leg up on the rat race - "With an online education, you also have more time to go out and find jobs before you graduate," reports the Techi.com article. "Many students wait until graduation to pursue employment, which is a terrible idea; the degree may be there, but the experience is absent. Your online education allows you the time to seek a temporary job or intern around your area." "Time and tide waits for no man," the old saying goes. When it comes to digital distance higher learning, time is on your side, and the tide is in, as far as your career prospects are concerned.
- Bucket list bonuses - "Your hobbies can also be a great tool for meeting people, another thing online education can give you extra time for," the Techi.com article observes. "Taking an extracurricular class such as knitting, dance, or taxidermy forces you to be in a room full of strangers. These strangers will probably want to chat about this hobby during or after the class." Birds of a feather flock together – and when those birds are fellow hobbyists a lot of preliminary discovery (interests, likes, dislikes) are removed from the equation.
Indeed, blessings rain on online higher education students. All the pieces are in place for them to take command of their lives in all of its dimensions – intellectually, occupationally, and romantically. If digital distance learning represents the further of postsecondary instructional delivery, then the future looks bright, indeed!