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Whether you’re planning to acquire new skills for a promotion or if you’re looking to change your career path, online schooling is an optional way to achieve your goals and branch out.
However, it can be a huge investment for some people and it’s certainly not a choice for everyone. Most people prefer to study in their own time, but some can find it more motivating to have a brick and mortar classroom to attend every couple of days.
Several years ago, I decided to take online courses before heading back to brick and mortar college. A friend of mine told me how easy it was and she was able to get her degree in about 18 months. So I inquired, did some thinking, even did a little investigative work. After thinking about it for a couple months, I enrolled.
BIG MISTAKE FOR ME!
I just don't have the discipline to sit there and listen to 1-2 hr lectures in the comfort of my home. I just couldn't put my blinders on. I was always looking around, looking at the laundry that needed folded, dishes that needed done, vacuuming, or even that dinner needed started on.
However, there are people who have the discipline I don't. I envy them. They are the ones where the world could be falling apart around them, but they are so focused on what's in front of them, they don't realize a thing. I'm the type of person that when a pen falls I look at the pen on the floor and realize that I haven't vacuumed in 2 days.
Online Schooling – Is It Right For You?
Is online learning really such a great option for you and your family. Since I've done both brick & mortar classes and online courses, here are a few things to think about if you decide on online courses.
Get ready to be distracted.
You’ll need a quiet space at home to study and it’s certainly not something you can do while you watch TV. This is the biggest problem I had when I was taking online courses. It's not for someone who tends to get easily distracted or has ADHD/ADD.
It's ideal to have a place where you can study, attend live broadcasted lectures, etc that is seperate from where your family is going to be. It could be your bedroom, an office, or even the dining room if there are doors. You could always wear earbuds or headphones to help also keep your focus.
Not All Online Schooling is 100% Online
There are often examinations and tests that you have to study for, and you might need to attend an office or classroom to take some examinations. Just like in a traditional schooling atmosphere, online schooling may require you to do an externship or internship.
Books & Equipment Can Cost More
You’re obviously limited to what you can study outside of a classroom. If you pick something that requires certain tools or special equipment, expect to pay and maintain it yourself! Sometimes you can find these items cheaper through Amazon.
Online Courses Aren't Always Cheaper
There are going to be course fees, just like a brick and mortar college or university. There are also going to be your application fee, online or tech fees, of course book fees, and sometimes other fees that will keep the school functioning.
You need to be independent if you’re studying from home since there’s rarely the option to speak with a fellow student or your professor.
If you’re fine with these considerations then learning from home might be the perfect choice for you to pick up new skills at your own pace.
As an example of what you can achieve learning from home, I’ve included an infographic below about online nursing degrees that you can study in your own time. It’s a fantastic option for anyone looking to expand their horizons and you can do it all in the comfort of your chair.
Infographic by: Carson-Newman University Online Nursing Programs