Three Benefits Of Learning Online

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Online learning is sweeping the nation — for everyone. Within the past decade or so, younger students have experience an influx of technology being incorporated into public and private schools alike. Elementary school students may be given laptops and tablets to borrow, to better help them learn. High school students are regular expected to incorporate technology into their projects. For that matter, students who are homeschooled or prone to moving due to their parents’ careers are often encouraged to consider online learning as an alternative to traditional learning. This is sometimes referred to as “virtual school”. But online learning has also become an important part of higher education. College students regularly take online courses, especially when those courses are meant for “general education credits” versus major-specific credits. And for adults who are returning to school after years away from it, online learning can truly be a “lifesaver”. Online learning isn’t just about sitting in front of a computer and listening to lectures — it’s often called home learning for a reason. Some are intimidated by online learning because it requires them to use technology heavily; some are just skeptical that they’ll learn anything at all. Below, we’ll look into some of the top benefits of online learning, whether you’re an older or younger student.

1. Flexibility

Whether you’re attending college for the first time or returning to school, you’ll likely feel overwhelmed at some point by the number of responsibilities you’ll be expected to take on. You may have commitments to family, and you’ll very likely have commitments to work. Courses may seem to be set in rigid schedules, wherein an absence can negatively affect your grade. So how do you balance this out? The great thing about online courses is that they’re flexible, and let you create your own schedule. While some may have occasional required “check in” points in which you must watch a live lecture or call a teacher, you’ll usually be able to handle most routine work on your own time. It’s no wonder that 68% of online students reported choosing online learning because it allowed them to balance their academic, professional, and personal lives. For that matter, online learning means not being confined to a classroom for a certain amount of time each week. 64% of online students reported appreciating their ability to study and learn at any place and any time. It makes learning more enjoyable, to be sure.

2. Career Advancement

For those returning to school, getting those extra credits, that certification, or even a new degree can really set you apart from the others in the professional arena. The job market is more competitive than ever, and having a bit of extra education can make your resume more unique. A lot of people simply turn to online learning to take some business classes that will help them start their own companies. An estimated 36% of people reported wanting to turn a hobby into something that generated income. Often, the issue is just figuring out how to do that. You often don’t have the time to just take some random business classes. Taking them online is simply more convenient, while still helping you learn the same skills that you need to make your goals a reality.

3. Social Opportunities

Online learning may not initially seem like it offers the same kind of social opportunities as learning through traditional means. Of course, they aren’t exactly the same — but you can still make a lot of friends through online learning. People often have to interact with other students during online learning, through discussion boards and sometimes teleconferences. Online learning can help you meet people you never would have socialized with otherwise, and therefore gain new perspectives. This can be especially helpful for those returning to school, who might be intimidated by the prospect and uncertain about what to do next. Having a strong community online can mean making lasting friends for life, and at the very least developing an academic support system.

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