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How to Succeed in Distance Learning

Distance learning has opened doors for many students, especially for those who cannot afford to pay for the high fees of full-time courses. Although ...

How to Succeed in Distance Learning article provided by wikiHow. Content on wikiHow can be shared under a Creative Commons License.

Succeed in Distance Learning

Distance learning has opened doors for many students, especially for those who cannot afford to pay for the high fees of full-time courses. Although online distance learning courses have many advantages over on-campus degree courses, many factors come into play in order to make this a success for students.

edit Steps

  1. 1
    Select the right distance learning school.There are many unscrupulous "degree mills" around in the market that are only keen to sell their degrees without providing good education. Do proper background check on the institution.
  2. 2
    Do a cost benefit analysis of taking the course online versus traditional classroom attendance and see if it's worth the cost.
  3. 3
    Make sure you are aware of the specific online degree positioning with prospective employers. Some employers are wary of certain degrees being acquired online. Ensure your online degree will be acknowledged when looking for a job.
  4. 4
    Exercise discipline, determination and time management to keep up with lessons and assignments. Maintain focus and avoid distraction and take the class as serious as any other class you've taken before.
  5. 5
    Make full use of facilities provides by your online school; online libraries and resources, one-on-one attention with your instructors and tutors and your other classmates.
  6. 6
    Utilize credit transfers. Most distance learning institutions allow students to transfer their credits from courses they had taken from other colleges. This way, you don't have to repeat what you have already learnt.
  7. 7
    Make full use of the conveniences that technology has to offer. Many online universities provide students with online research resources that are valuable for completing assignments or producing research papers.

edit Tips

  • Realize that credible online schools will expect you to perform like any face-to-face student--excellently: Any place that is too easy and doesn't care what you do is just out for your money--watch out for them
  • While not always so, a credible online program is often tied to a credible bricks and mortar program. If the program you are looking at is offered by a notable school that offers on campus education as well as distance learning, this may be a good sign.
  • Know your limits--legitimate online courses will have a normal college load of work: If you're working full time, consider taking only 1-3 classes. Too many students overwhelm themselves and burn out by taking 4-6 (or more classes) at a time while working full time, too.
  • A basic rule for the amount of work is the "Rule of 3": For every hour of "in class time," there is supposed to be three hours of "homework." This is true for face-to-face classes and online classes. So, a 3-credit course means that you should be "in class" for three hours per week and have 9 hours of homework, for a total of 12 hours. Therefore, a face-to-face course or an online course expects up to 12 hours of work per week. (Do the math--two classes would be 24 hours per week, three classes = 36 hours, four classes = 48 hours, and five classes = 60 hours). Be sure you can handle the load.

edit Warnings

  • Make sure you only choose a college or university that's accredited in your own country. Some colleges or universities are accredited in their home country but not abroad. You should check that before enrolling.

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