Online education options and degree programs are on the raise. According to a recent publication, 3.5 million students took at least one online course in the fall of 2006, a 10% increase over the previous year (Online Nation: Five Years of Growth in Online Learning 2007) .But with more choices come more questions and uncertainty. What should you do? What type of degree program is better? What will provide greater benefits in the future?
All legitimate and important questions. Unfortunately, there are no easy answers or at least no absolute truth. The question: "Is an online degree better compared to a campus college degree" should be replaced by the question "Is an online degree a better choice for ME compared to a campus college degree".
To complicate the matters further, you will find that the answer to this question may change as your life changes and what worked at the start of your education career may not fit your needs down the road.
Fear not. With so many options in front of you, you do not really have to pick one over the other. Most large institutions of education offer some online courses, with many having a complete online program. Benefit from both methods of learning and instruction by combining the two. Your ultimate goal should be completing the degree of your choice, online or on campus.
While you are the only one that can really decide what program is best for you, here are some questions to consider to help you in your decision:
Are you able to stay motivated? Are you very disciplined? Can you be productive at home? Do you like working from home? Are you shy and prefer written communication? Do you currently have a full time job? Do you have daycare issues to deal with?
Did you answer YES to most of these? If so, an online degree program may be just for you. Try a class or two before you commit to a full blown degree program.
If you answered NO to most of the above questions, you probably have a hard time staying motivated without someone pulling you along. You rather get out of the house because working from home is too distracting. You like socializing and meeting new people in person, eye to eye. You have time to attend a scheduled class because you either do not have a full time job or can work around it. If this description sounds a bit like you – a campus college education may be right up your alley. Do not forget to try one or two online course, you may be surprised!
Whiche degree program you choose, online or campus, be assured that you can not make the wrong decision. You will find benefits for both, and if you really hate the choice you made, just change it. It's that easy!