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Five Advantages of Online Learning

Online learning has many more benefits than saving on gas money. Attending online college can provide many advantages to a job applicant in a difficult hiring market. This post illustrates five key advantages of obtaining a degree online.

1. Online Learners are Technologically-literate Job Applicants

Online learners have demonstrated an ability to utilize technology to accomplish goals and communicate in a variety of ways – two core job skills employers seek, as stated by Smart Business Cleveland. Hiring managers need new employees to enter the workplace equipped with the technical expertise necessary to do the job, but they are looking for those who can keep up with technological advances and think critically about how to use technology to perform job functions more efficiently.

2. Keep Your Job

In a time of economic uncertainty, who can risk giving up a steady paycheck? Many online learners have the goal of either getting a promotion or switching career fields. Online students need to be prepared to devote as much time to coursework as they would a residential class, but having the flexibility to choose when to devote time to coursework allows an employee more availability during typical business hours. More work experience is typically an advantage for a job applicant, and the ability to keep a job or complete an internship while in school is an advantage online learning can make more realistic.

Online learning

3. Become a More Independent Learner

While the growth of online academic resources makes it easier to learn online, establishing a schedule for coursework, building effective study habits, and understanding how you learn and study are transformative processes. There are also ways online learners can demonstrate they are independent and self-motivated individuals with initiative to achieve goals, develope problem-solving skills, locate and utilize resources effectively, and communicate effectively– in other words, they have many of the soft skills employers seek.

4. Fast-track to Completing a Degree

In a time when only about 57 percent of college students obtain a degree within six years of starting school, online students who effectively balance commitments—work and family life are prime examples—with coursework can accomplish their goal of graduating quickly (National Center For Educational Statistics). Online learning provides the opportunity to complete coursework during otherwise underutilized times of the day (or night). Why should that matter? Taking one additional course each term decreases the time it takes to finish a degree, and reduces the risk of a student losing motivation before graduating.

5. Complete Research Efficiently

While it was once thought that libraries would eventually be artifacts of the past with the emergence of e-books and other Internet researching tools, this has proven to be anything but true. Libraries have made the transition to the online environment.

For online learners online library portals can be the hub of credible, easily-accessible academic research. Online learners complete research by effectively navigating abundant online databases full of e-books and scholarly articles that can be searched and sorted in a variety of ways, then searching within texts for key – a far cry from the era of the Dewey Decimal System and card catalogues.

Jon Mladic

This article was written by Jon Mladic, the Learning Center Coordinator for Rasmussen College at the Rockford, IL college campus. He has worked in the field of education for more than five years. Jon received his Master's degree in English Literature from Illinois Wesleyan University.

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