With the consistently rising popularity of computers and the unstoppable prevalence of internet use in the world, the education sector has found a way to make them of good use through distance learning education or also sometimes referred to as e-learning and online learning. This method is basically the engagement of students and teachers in a cyber environment, meaning they do not have to attend traditional classes with the usual classroom setup.
Non-traditional students such as those with full-time or part-time jobs, nonresidents, people who live in far-off places, or those without chances to attend scheduled classes are the ones who benefit most from programs offered by distance learning education. In the United States alone, over 5 million people were recorded to have enrolled in different distance learning courses in 2014.
Distance learning courses are becoming more and more favorable for everyone because of the merits they serve. Such programs offer comfort and convenience because students can set up their own study place, choose a schedule most preferable to them, enroll anywhere without the need to travel, and spend less both on fees and expenses. Furthermore, students can interact with diverse people from different places and do research and other tasks using only an internet-powered device while developing the research and planning skills in the process.
Available courses in universities or colleges with distance learning education are mostly the same as those that are offered in the traditional undergraduate or graduate school setting. Examples distance learning courses might be categorized under science, legal, liberal arts and humanities, architecture, agriculture, communications, engineering, education, or visual and performing arts. There are also short course programs and longer online programs. The availability of one’s desired course depends on the university he/she will sign up to.
Compared to customary education, distance learning courses are way much cheaper in terms of tuition, materials, and personal expenses of learners. However, the cost will still vary depending on the university one wishes to attend. Among the factors that affect the pricesare university types, degree level, and the scholarships or grants applied to.
There are many types of scholarships an enrollee can benefit from still based on his/her location. In most cases, scholarships are offered by the universities themselves to qualified applicants. Sometimes, the ministry of education in some countries funds students wanting to get a distance learning education degree. There are also instances when employers offer grants for employees with plans on pursuing further education.
Once interested, the best way is to browse for courses then looking for online schools offering such. Once decided, one can compare universities and choose whichever is best based on his/her priorities. Does the university name matter more or is it the price that is important? Lastly, look for scholarship opportunities and prepare the necessary tools to get started.