Students and professionals embrace online learning because of its numerous benefits. To keep their jobs, amass experience and advance their careers, employees turn to online educational institutions and other online learning platforms.
Entrepreneurs are also turning to e-learning to acquire relevant skills with which they can transform their businesses and become leaders in their respective industries.
Simultaneously, the number of educational institutions offering completely online programs is increasing. In addition to traditional, campus-based schools, there are fully online institutions that award certain certificates.
If you are not adequately informed, you are bound to take potentially regrettable decisions. This article outlines 5 things you should consider before choosing an online program.
5 Things to Look Out for
Enrolling in a program is one investment you don’t want to see go awry as it is tied to your future. Therefore, accreditation should be the first thing you look out for before applying.
Irrespective of the mode of study, employers recognize only certificates issued by accredited schools – schools that have been scrutinized by relevant bodies and adjudged to offer quality education.
Online schools commonly list their accreditation on their websites. Where this is not noticeably displayed, it is a red flag.
2. Mode of delivery
Some online programs are hybrid, combining online and on-campus classes. Do due diligence by getting detailed information about the mode of delivery before choosing an online program.
3. Availability of support
Online students are likely to encounter some issues that will require the support of staff. Some of these may be academic or technical.
Students may also have challenges relating to communication channels like email, telephone, online community and chat. Since online students do not have access to the support service provided on campus, it is important that you choose a school with accessible support staff to swiftly resolve online student-related issues.
4. Non-tuition fees
Do not make the mistake of ignoring other fees that may be associated with the program of your choice other than the tuition. The sum of these fees may be higher than your tuition. Your inability to afford these fees may jeopardize your graduation.
You are advised to examine the reputation of the school among employers and alumni as well as relationships with other educational institutions.
You may also want to consider the graduation rate of admitted students and the institution’s years of experience in delivering online lectures. This would give you a glimpse of what to expect.
Applying for online programs is one of the prudent decisions you can take to advance your career or transform your business. However, choosing a school requires caution.
The good news is that you can remove all associated risks by joining the over 500,000 international students enrolling in accredited programs at MSBM.
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