I love continuing my education, right in the comfort of my own home. Can you imagine this – having the flexibility and freedom to attend classes according to my own schedule, choosing the course I want, and having easy access to all the materials for classes for the next lesson?
If you too, are an online student, you could probably relate with me. However, if you are considering an online education, there are 7 important tips to know about continuing your education online, and how to be a successful online student:
1) You must be able to communicate through writing
As you are attending a virtual classroom, nearly all communication is written, and in order to fully participate in classes, it is critical that you are able to express yourself effectively through writing.
2) Motivation and self-discipline
When you attend a conventional school, you have your friends and teachers to motivate you and even ‘punish’ you if you do not complete your assignments. Not in the world of online education. You must therefore be highly motivated and disciplined, and take responsibility for your own education.
3) Learn to ‘speak up’
In the traditional world of education, if the teacher sees that the students look confused or unsure of what has been taught, he/she will repeat it until the students are clear. However in the online world, the instructors are unable to know if the students are able to keep up to speed with the lessons, unless the students ‘speak up’.
4) Have a different attitude towards online education
Most students nowadays think that online education is the easy way to get an education. That is far from the truth. In fact, continuing your education online may be harder than a normal education, due to the strict quality control most online schools enforce. Therefore, view it as a convenient way to get an education, and not an easy way.
5) Practise critical thinking and decision making
The online learning process requires the student to be decisive in making decisions based on information provided, along with experience. And making the right decision requires critical thoughts.
One of the most important tips is to participate actively in a virtual classroom. You can learn a lot from your peers as well, and this makes continuing your education online a much more fun process.
7) Be polite and respectful
Although you are anonymous, be wary of your language. You are after all dealing with real teachers and students, and it is crucial to have a productive and supportive online environment. In such positive environments, you will feel more valued, and your own work will have higher value naturally.
Online education is starting to take the world by storm, and more and more students are turning to virtual schools to get their accredited online degrees. If this sounds good, you can always request for your free online education match, and decide for yourself if continuing your education online is suitable for you.
Adult Learning And Direct Education Online – Thomson And Others
In the area of offering direct education online, Thomson Direct was an early pioneer. Founded by Thomas J. Foster in 1890-long before online education was possible-Thomson started by providing home learning programs for coal miners. By completing the lessons at home in their off-work hours, men could learn the engineering and management principles to advance in their careers. Many mining superintendents and foremen owed their positions to distance learning from Thomson. Since then, over 13 million students have used Thomson distance learning for career advancement.
Today, Thomson Direct has become PennFoster Career School, an international career education provider. PennFoster, Phoenix University and Kaplan University are three examples of schools that specialize in direct education online.
Many schools offer distance learning, direct education or online classes. For most colleges and universities, distance learning is an add-on to their traditional programs. Their primary mission evolves out of traditional brick-and-mortar education.
A few schools, however, exist to provide direct education to adults. They are unique because:
- They do not provide traditional classes. They only provide education through distance learning formats.
- They are designed to teach adults. Adult education is different than traditional education. Direct education online classes are formatted differently than traditional classes. Classes are taught the way adults learn best.
- They are career-oriented. These are not personal interest classes. These schools offer classes to help adults advance in their careers. Career-oriented classes could lead to a college degree, or they could be continuing education classes, professional certification classes or skill-building classes. Working adults sometimes need formal college education, and sometimes they need job-specific training.
When you’re looking for direct education online, Thomson and its descendents are good choices. One way to tell if you have found a good provider of adult education is to check to see if the school is accredited, and who provides the accreditation it. If the school offers high school classes, it should be accredited to provide high school classes. If it provides college classes, it should be accredited by a college accreditation organization. Other accreditations that a direct education online provider might have are accreditation as a distance learning provider or continuing education provider accreditation.