There are many sayings about how we should never stop learning, but once you have left full-time education as a young adult it can be difficult to get back into the system. Life gets filled up with a career, kids, hobbies and chores, leaving little time for hitting the books.
But this is where distance learning comes in. Continuing education at any age can have a whole host of benefits. You could learn a new language before jetting off to explore the world. Or take an additional qualification to help you land a promotion. Perhaps you want a complete change of career but can’t afford to leave your current job and go back to university.
Whatever your situation it is worth exploring the distance learning options with Oxford Open Learning and thinking about how it could work for you.
Let’s take a look at some of the benefits and advantages:
You can study at whatever time suits you. This is the biggest advantage of distance learning and is what makes further education a viable option for parents and professionals.
There are no set times for when you have to attend classes, just do the work whenever you can fit it in. This could be first thing in the morning before you head to the office, or during the afternoon when the kids are having a nap.
Go at your own pace
You also work at your own pace. This means that when life gets in the way you can take a break and start up again where you left off. You don’t feel rushed at any stage so if you need to re-read one of the texts or take a bit longer on an essay you can do so.
Distance learning courses are usually cheaper than those where you have to attend classes. This can open up all sorts of opportunities even if your budget is limited. You can often pay in instalments or one module at a time as well, helping you to manage the costs of education.
Many distance learning courses provide the resources online so you can access them at any time. No need to liaise with fellow students over a single copy of the text in the campus library.
Easy access also means you don’t have to travel to college buildings for lectures or tutorials. Tutors and fellow students often “meet” online via Skype or chat rooms so you can still get support and guidance.
The idea of going back to a classroom or lecture theatre can be daunting and even seem boring. Distance learning does away with these traditional facilities so you can learn from the comfort of your own home. Or the train.Or the beach.
Distance learning offers all sorts of officially recognized qualifications. From GCSEs and A-levels to NVQs and professional diplomas, what you learn is accredited, helping you move up the career ladder.
The range of online courses available is vast. You could study anything from English, art history or Portuguese to child-minding or bookkeeping. The world of learning is literally at your fingertips!
An online education provides the opportunity to study more subjects and reach out to programs that are not available in the immediate area.
Distance learning is much more flexible than traditional styles of classroom education. Students who need to take other classes or work can do classwork whenever they have a free moment instead of being restricted to a rigid schedule.
Students who enroll in classes with online education obtain a wider range of networking opportunities. Instead of being limited to networking in the local area, distance learning enables students to make connections with a more diverse range of people.
Online education enables students to work at their own pace in many circumstances. The requirements are not as strict and typically give a range of due dates when the work needs to be submitted.
The schedules for distance learning are more open and allow for students, parents and professionals to take the classes whenever it fits into their schedule. This is beneficial over classroom education that requires students to schedule work and childcare around the class time.
Online classes typically cost less than an education in a classroom environment. There are less space limitations and materials required for each student and the savings are passed on from the educational institution to each student.
A huge advantage to getting an online education is that there is no need to travel to and from class every single day. Someone who doesn’t drive or want to spend money on the costs of public transportation every single day will likely choose to get an online education over the traditional classroom.
Selection of Professors
Distance learning enables students to learn from some of the most prestigious professors and guest speakers in each field.
No Classroom Sitting
Sitting in the classroom is not the best way for every student to learn. A student may learn better at his own pace and in a different format than traditional schooling options offer.
Online classes are just as, if not more, effective at teaching students than the traditional classroom style of learning.
Distance learning may not be the ideal option for everyone but should be considered when looking at options for education.
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