Tips To Selecting An Online Study Provider

Feb 17, 2014 | 8:00 am
Academic Resources GED Technology
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TypingWhile online education continues to grow in popularity, as it has been doing over the last several years, there are still plenty of people who have their doubts about whether virtual learning is really a viable alternative to the traditional classroom.  Many of these doubts stem from news stories of unscrupulous institutions which offered no real education of value, and were only out to make money. Despite this, trends show an increasing change over from brick and mortar schooling to online schooling. But all online institutions are not made equal. Here are some tips to selecting and online course provider:

  1. Check accreditation and read reviews. Just because an online institute is accredited does not necessarily mean that it would be a good place to study. Be picky when looking for where to study online. Read review about the kind of experiences others have had. Also, research the body which has given accreditation to the schools you are considering. Are they trustworthy? This kind of research can help save a lot of headache in the future.
  2. Check scheduling. Check the schedules which are available from the online institution. Do they agree with your schedule of availability? Are there classes that you can complete on your own time?
  3. Stay away from high-pressure sales tactics. Many colleges and universities have recruiters whose job it is to get you to sign on. This is normal. But you should also be wary of institutions which employ high pressure sales tactics. Learning institutions should respect your ability to consider all the pros and cons of their offering and make your own decision. If you feel they are pressuring too much, that could be a sign that that this not the place for you.
  4. Ask tough questions. When interviewing the representatives of a learning institution, ask the tough questions. Ask about the costs, hidden fees, student loans, grants, scholarships, and job prospects. Ask for the graduation rate of past students and how many of their students continue to higher degrees. Do not be afraid to ask these kinds of questions.  The representative with whom you speak should be ready to answer any question you have, or find the answer if they do not have it off-hand. Never feel that you are being a bother by asking questions. The purpose of questioning is to learn the answers, and learning is the whole reason for taking online courses in the first place.

While earning a diploma or degree online can certainly open the doors of opportunity that would otherwise remain closed, the real benefit is the sense of accomplishment and pride that comes from achieving such a lofty goal. But remember, all online courses are not created equal. The personal development and accomplishment you want can only be had by studying with a competent institution. Do your homework before enrolling with an online institution. This will not only help avoid issues while you are taking classes, but after you graduate as well.