There are many universities and institutions around the world offering online courses. From here, students can obtain degrees without having to step foot on campus anywhere. For some, this is a major benefit. For others, it’s not always as easy. There are a number of pros and cons for both sides of the proverbial coin. Some prefer the remote nature of online courses. Others value personal instruction.
This piece will look at the pros and cons of getting an online college degree.
Pro: Saves The Student Time
Being able to ‘attend’ school from the comforts of your home can be highly beneficial. For one, you’ll never be late to class. The time spent in a car commuting to school is now eradicated by simply logging onto a computer. As such, the former time in the vehicle can be put towards studying, exercise, or another activity. Additionally, there’s something to be said about operating from a familiar and cozy environment. Many people work more effectively as opposed to in a cavernous lecture hall.
Con: Lack of Face-to-Face Teacher Interaction
By completing courses remotely, the student won’t be able to have the opportunity for daily face-to-face interactions with the instructor. Surely, one can communicate via email. However, it’s not the same as reserving office hours with your said professor. Additionally, a student may pick up upon emphasized material from an actual lecture in a lecture hall. This may not be the case for those operating digitally. By the time exams roll around, emphasized text in the form of questions may be a surprise when not given the opportunity for personal interaction. Even the clarifying of course material may get lost in translation over email. As a result, the collective comprehension of material may suffer.
Pro: Costs Likely Will Be Less
Online courses are generally far more affordable across the board when compared to university life. For undergraduate and even some graduate students, the act of completing material online extinguishes the need to live on campus. Paying for a dorm room — or even renting an apartment — could become highly expensive. The online route enables students to save money not only in instruction, but also from a living standpoint.
Con: Networking Opportunities May Suffer
Though this isn’t unequivocally the case, garnering an online degree could hinder future job opportunities. Whether it’s a stigma or the truth, some businesses and corporation devalue online degrees from certain institutions when compared to actual universities. Additionally, the axiom “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know” rings true perhaps more so today than ever. Being able to tangibly build connections and networks with peers is vital. The growth of this burgeoning ‘future job plant’ all starts inside the classroom. While it’s not impossible to build connections with classmates over the internet, it’s far easier to do so whilst in a classroom interacting with one another. With connections come potential friendships, and with potential friendships come job opportunities.
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