Why Online College/Distance Learning Is Not For Everyone

Are you tired of waking up early in the morning? Are you tired of commuting to college for long periods of time in cold weather? I’m 100% every single college student reading this responded with a great big YES! Well that’s exactly how online colleges market their services

I love it when I receive an email or phone call from an online college/distance learning school trying to promote their product to me. If this service is so great why do I not want to try it? Because distance learning is not for everyone, especially not for me. Why would I/many readers of Studenomics not excel at distance learning? Please allow me to explain before anyone gets offended:

Online College requires a lot of self discipline

Let’s be honest, if it wasn’t for those 3 hour lectures would we remember anything from Business-to-Business Marketing Concepts class? Taking the time to read a full chapter every single week or trying to figure out how to solve the more difficult problems requires a lot of self discipline and commitment. As much as we would love to claim that we are dedicated to our studies it is the professors and attendance grade that keeps us coming to class.

The whole distance learning concept eliminates most networking opportunities

When you are confined to completing all of your assignments from home you miss out on spending time in the computer lab and on working together with groups of interesting students. Sure the odd group may be a thorn in your butt but generally speaking you meet some great people that you will see in the work force one day.

Online College/University credentials may not be as reputable on your resume

I don’t want to offend anyone but after speaking with a few college employment recruiters I was left with the impression that many employers value the “traditional” degree as opposed to the online degree. This doesn’t mean that you won’t find a job with an online college degree, it just may not be as strong of a qualification.

These were the three main points that I have heard about the negatives of obtaining an online college degree. If you have heard anything else please share it with us. I will also return in a few days discussing the ideal individuals for obtaining an online degree.

1 thought on “Why Online College/Distance Learning Is Not For Everyone”

  1. I just wanted to share my experience with regards to networking…Initially, I had the same skepticism. But our classes require group work and interaction (through online forums and chat, among other media). Additionally, many of our academic departments have great networking opportunities through LinkedIn groups, Facebook and MySpace. For instance, our emergency management programs have a very strong network of students on linkedin that post 100s of job opportunities and resources on career advancement.

    While there are significant differences regarding networking between traditional educational models and online learning, I would hypothesisize that the Internet and social networking has reduced the gap significantly.

    But alas, you will miss out making friends in the computer lab at 3am printing out a term paper… perhaps the lab becomes a Starbucks, and your networking opportunity becomes the fellow in line behind you who asks about the paper you are writing…

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