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Why Online Education - eBook From Grantham University

VIEWS: 8 PAGES: 21

This is a must-read guide to understanding the the pitfalls and payoffs of online education. This guide is produced by Grantham University and recommended by the Grantham university Fan Club grantham-university-org.blogspot.com

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									WHY
ONLINE
EDUCATION:
A Must-Have Guide to
Understanding the Pitfalls
– and Payoffs – of Distance Learning
                                                                      Is this eBook Right
                                                                      for Me?
                                                                      You will find this eBook most helpful if you
                                                                      fit into one of these catagories ...

                                                                         • I am new to the concept of online learning and
                                                                           want to find out more.
                                                                         • I am considering getting my undergraduate
                                                                           or graduate degree and want to explore the
                                                                           differences between online and on-campus
                                                                           schools.
                                                                         • I am ready to commit to an online education,
                                                                           but looking for guidance on how to choose the
                                                                           right university.

                                                                      Share this eBook!




                  ONLINE                                      is fast becoming a preferred way of learning for
                                                              military and civilian adults alike. According to the
                                                              Sloan Consortium’s 2011 Survey of Online Learning,
                  nearly one-third of college students are taking at least one online course, and 65% of higher
                  education institutions now say that online learning is a critical part of their long-term strategy.
                  (http://sloanconsortium.org/publications/survey/going_distance_2011)


                  Inside the pages of this eBook, Why Online Eduation, you will discover important “need-to
                  -know” aspects of online degree programs. Included are tips for:


                   • Determining if your lifestyle is a good fit for online learning
                   • Getting your family onboard with your education
                   • Distinguishing among online institutions as you choose the right one for you


                  Making an informed, confident decision about the mode of learning for your college education
                  will have you well on your way to your chosen degree and desired career path. We are pleased
                  to help you take the first step with this eBook. Enjoy!




2   Grantham University | www.grantham.edu
Table of Contents
I. Is Distance Learning for Me?
      5       College Education: Are You Ready?
      7       Dispelling the Myths about Online
              Degrees
      9       Simple Answers to Common Questions
              about Distance Learning
     11       The Merits of Online Degree Programs
     13       Online Versus On-Campus: The Pros
              and Cons
II. Preparing for Online Learning
     16       The Power of Family Support: Topics for
              Discussion Before Starting Your Online
              Degree Program
     17       What to Consider in Your Search for the
              Best Online University
     18       10 Mistakes to Avoid When Exploring
              Your Options
     19       Comparison Worksheet
     20       Student Checklist: Preparing for a
              Successful E-Learning Experience
                                     Is Distance Learning for Me?




4   Grantham University | www.grantham.edu
College Education: Are You Ready?
Good indicators that you are ready to pursue an online degree:




  1
           You have a goal and know that education is key to
           getting there.
           You are ready to start your college education online if … you already know that you need a
           certain degree type in order to get ahead – either financially or in terms of job responsibilities.
           Just remember: Earning a degree requires commitment. Make sure you have a clear objective;
           otherwise, you will have a tougher time making it through your more difficult studies.


           Your family is on board with your decision to pursue your

  2        education.
           You are ready to start your college education online if … you have discussed your education
           goals with your family and have their support. It is important to talk with your family – before
           starting your degree program – about why you want to go to college. Go over how things
           might be different around the house: increased chores for kids, rotating meal preparation
           responsibilities, guaranteed quiet time to study in the evenings, etc.




  3
           You understand the time commitment required.
           You are ready to start your college education online if … you are comfortable with the time
           involved and are 100% committed. A three-credit college course will require, on average, 10 to
           12 hours per week. Be realistic about your schedule and your motivation. A good rule of thumb
           might be to set aside an hour and a half each evening for your studies, and a few hours each
           weekend day.




                                                                        Grantham University | www.grantham.edu   5
        4
                     You have considered the financial impacts of going to
                     school to earn your degree.
                     You are ready to start your college education online if … you have done your research on
                     student financing and know your options. Look at your personal budget and examine how
                     paying for school may affect you and your family over the next few years. Explore all financial
                     assistance options, including scholarships. And think about the payoff from your investment –
                     the potential for increased earnings with your degree in hand.




        5
                     You are an active duty service member or veteran, and
                     are familiar with your tuition assistance benefits.
                     You are ready to start your college education online if … you have learned about the veteran
                     benefits and tuition assistance (TA) benefits available to you. TA funds and veteran education
                     benefits can cover the costs associated with tuition, books, supplies and more for a variety of
                     educational and training programs. It is a smart, cost-effective way to obtain your education
                     and enhance your career advancement opportunities.



        6
                     You are a corporate employee, and tuition
                     reimbursement is one of your company benefits.
                     You are ready to start your college education online if … you know the ins and outs of your
                     company’s tuition reimbursement benefit. Taking advantage of this generous offer is a smart
                     move … and always worthy of serious consideration. Do some checking at your workplace
                     – sometimes tuition assistance is not heavily advertised, although available. If it is offered,
                     consider these factors:

                            How much they will                Type of institution.                When they will pay.
                            pay. Employers are                Typically, employers will           Determine whether your
                            able to provide $5,250            insist that your chosen             employer will pay up
                     in educational assistance per     school is accredited by an         front, at the start of the semester,
                     year tax free. If your employer   accreditation agency recognized    or if you have to come up with
                     chooses to offer this benefit,    by the United States Department    money for tuition first, and then
                     chances are that the amount       of Education (DOE) or the          wait for reimbursement after you
                     would cap at the $5,250.          Council for Higher Education       receive your grades.
                                                       Accreditation (CHEA). Check
                            What they cover. In        this out before settling on a               Field of study. A
                            addition to tuition and    university.                                 common employer
                            fees, are things like                                                  requirement is for your
                     textbooks and related course             Your grades. Find out       field of study to be relevant to
                     materials included?                      how grades may affect       your current or future job.
                                                              your level of coverage.
                            Type of education.         Employers often require a “C” or          Length of employment.
                            Some companies will pay    better for tuition reimbursement          Following degree
                            100% of the costs toward   eligibility.                              completion, you usually
                     a degree or certification, but                                       must remain employed for a
                     only 50% for personal interest                                       certain amount of time by that
                     courses. Make sure to ask!                                           employer.




6   Grantham University | www.grantham.edu
Dispelling the Myths about Online Degrees




 1
      Myth #1: Distance learning programs are easier than
      those at brick-and-mortar schools.
      There is no definite way to label either online or on-campus schools as easier or harder than the
      other. The degree of difficulty is dependent on the student, the program and the school. Some
      brick-and-mortar schools offer both on-campus and distance learning programs. For these
      schools, the course work will no doubt be the same, just delivered in a different manner. And
      for most online universities, like Grantham University, the focus is on quality education.




 2
      Myth #2: Online learners miss out on interaction with
      instructors and other students.
      Many distance learning institutions hold “class” via webcams and chat rooms, enabling students
      to listen to course lectures by instructors and interact with other students. In fact, some distance
      learning schools mandate that students post to a message board for their class a certain number
      of times a week. If they don’t, they risk being dropped from the course or getting a lower grade.
      Group work involving a number of students is also built into the curriculum of some distance
      learning programs, and the students are graded on their group project.

      In comparison, class sizes at many on-campus institutions are growing. Some underclassman
      courses hold several hundred students, and the courses are often taught by graduate students.




 3
      Myth #3: Distance learning is for students who can’t
      succeed in a “real” school.
      Online learning students are from all walks of life. In fact, many distance learning students are
      adults who have already earned an undergraduate degree or credits through classroom learning
      and have just gone back to school via distance learning to upgrade their skill set or earn a
      graduate degree.




                                                                   Grantham University | www.grantham.edu    7
        4
                     Myth #4: A distance learning degree won’t be accepted
                     by employers.
                     Degrees earned through distance learning are gaining wider acceptance by employers –
                     especially for hard-to-fill jobs. Many employers offer tuition reimbursement to their employees
                     knowing full well that the degrees are being earned online or through other distance learning
                     methods.

                     Myth #5: Credits earned via distance learning won’t

        5            transfer to other schools.
                     Credit transfer – whether from brick-and-mortar or online – is always left to the discretion of
                     the receiving institution. Look for a university that will give your credits from other schools –
                     as well as prior work experience and training – serious consideration for transferability. If you
                     plan to transfer, be sure to check first with the receiving institution to determine if it will accept
                     credits from the institution you are considering attending.

                     Myth #6: Distance learning programs are overpriced.

        6            Tuition for online degree programs varies widely. Some are very competitive. Distance learning
                     schools have their own unique expenses. While campus schools pay for landscaping, building
                     maintenance and sports facilities, online schools often pay extra for student support services and
                     graduation coaches. Some online schools have technology fees and proctored examination fees,
                     which are legitimate expenses that allow students to complete their studies in a convenient format.
                     It’s also important to consider the cost savings that online programs allow. Online students almost
                     always pay zero commuting costs, zero parking fees and zero childcare costs.




        7
                     Myth #7: Anyone can succeed in a distance learning
                     course/program.
                     Distance learning is not for everybody and can be quite challenging for some. Before
                     committing to a distance learning course, consider the following:
                          • Do I have easy access to a newer computer and high-speed Internet?
                          • Do I work well unsupervised?
                          • Am I able to stick to a schedule and avoid procrastination?
                          • Can I meet deadlines?
                     If you answered “no” to any of these questions, you may want to rethink the distance learning
                     option or get family and friends to support you! You must be able to work independently, stick
                     to a schedule and meet the required deadlines. While some students thrive in a virtual learning
                     environment, others do better within the structure of a classroom.




        8
                     Myth #8: A degree from a distance learning school is
                     useless because nobody has heard of the school.
                     There are numerous distance learning programs available today, and students should easily be
                     able to find one that meets their needs. For most employers, the name of the school is irrelevant;
                     the quality of the education and the accreditation of the school are what really matter.



8   Grantham University | www.grantham.edu
Simple Answers to Common Questions
about Distance Learning
Distance learning, also called e-learning, online learning, distance education or
online education, can generally be defined as academic material delivered via the
computer and the Internet. The rising popularity of online learning is largely due to
its flexibility and affordability.

Here are some of the most frequently asked questions:
1. How do online courses work?
Online courses are available through an institution’s virtual learning environment. All of your coursework,
including discussions, tests and writing assignments, is completed electronically. You simply log-in to the virtual
learning environment through a web browser, click on the link for your course, and you are in class.

2. Are online courses truly available 24/7?
Convenience is one of the top reasons students elect to learn online. As long as assignments are submitted by the
established due date, it doesn’t matter when you actually do the work. And then there are schools that give you
a deadline for completing the entire course, rather than for each assignment. As long as you have all coursework
completed prior to the class end date, you won’t be penalized.

3. Is online learning effective?
Yes. More than 20% of higher education students are online learners. Research compiled by the Western
Cooperative for Educational Telecommunications suggests that there is no significant difference between the
effectiveness of learning through online courses and traditional, classroom-based courses.
(http://wcet.wiche.edu/learn/adult-learners)

4. Is there any interaction with professors and other students?
Unlike an on-campus class, there are no class lectures and no one is sitting in the “back row.” Everyone
participates. Many online colleges require students to engage in weekly discussions. Professors provide feedback
on assignments and are also available via e-mail, phone and course chat rooms. Some even have virtual office
hours.

         5. Will I have an actual Instructor?
          Yes, all online courses have instructors, with varying credentials and real-world expertise. Typically,
           your instructor will have one of three different backgrounds:
            • An instructor at a traditional campus-based program, who also teaches online courses.
             • Someone who prefers online teaching only.
              • An expert working full-time in the career field in which he/she teaches, who teaches online
               courses part-time. For example, your instructor for Criminal Justice 101 could also be the Chief
                of Police in a city or town near you.



                                                                             Grantham University | www.grantham.edu   9
     6. How much time will I spend studying?
     Online learning is flexible. But you still must work hard toward your degree. On average, expect to spend
     about 10-12 hours per week on your studies for each course. It’s work, but the upside is the increase in job
     opportunities following graduation. (http://www.bls.gov/spotlight/2010/college/)


     7. Is an online degree accepted by employers?
     Upon graduating from an online university, your diploma and transcript will be identical to those earned by
     graduates in a traditional campus-based program. Your diploma will not distinguish you as an online student.
     That said, with more than 3.94 million students enrolled in online courses, employer acceptance of online courses
     and degree programs is rapidly increasing.


     8. Are online colleges accredited?
     Reputable online universities, just like traditional campus-based colleges, are accredited by agencies recognized
     by the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) and/or the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA).
     Accreditation assures that the institution operates on a sound financial basis, has an approved program of study,
     qualified instructors, adequate facilities and equipment, and approved recruitment and admissions policies. A
     great way to check on a college or university’s accreditation is to search for them on the U.S. Department of
     Education’s Database of Accredited Programs and Institutions (http://ope.ed.gov/accreditation/).


     9. Can anyone take an online course?
     If you have a computer and Internet access, you can take an online class. But that doesn’t necessarily mean it
     is the right choice for you. Online students need to be highly motivated and capable of adhering to a set study
     schedule. If you are by nature a procrastinator and need a structured learning environment, online courses may
     not be the best choice.


     10. Do I have to wait until the start of a new semester to enroll?
     Rather than semester-based, many online universities have weekly, biweekly or monthly enrollment periods,
     so you can get started on your degree as quickly as possible. Also, many online schools have continuous
     enrollment, meaning that once you enroll and start your courses, you can progress through each course without
     taking a break.




10   Grantham University | www.grantham.edu
The Merits of Online Degree Programs
A critical part of the online versus on-campus debate is understanding the advantages of
online universities. Check out why online degree programs continue to rise in popularity.

Convenience and flexibility
Adult students with families and career commitments, also called non-traditional students, enroll in online
degree programs because they find it easier to balance work, family and school. You may not have time to sit
in the classroom and listen to a lecture. But with online learning, you can study and attend class when it is
convenient for you, not when it is convenient for the institution. Online programs typically allow you to work at
your own pace, and some do not have any required login times, making it a flexible option.


Affordability
If you are seeking an associate degree, online courses can be more expensive than taking courses at your local
community college. But according to GetEducated.com, a national consumer advocacy group that researches,
rates, ranks and verifies the credibility of online college and distance learning degree programs, it is possible to
save thousands of dollars on a bachelor’s degree and pay $12,000 less than the national average for a master’s
degree by going to school online. In addition, students attending class online save valuable time, money, and
wear and tear on their car by not traveling to and from campus. Maximizing your transfer credit from life
experiences, including military service and corporate training, can reduce the number of courses needed to
graduate.


Validity
Online students have indicated that online courses are just as tough, if not tougher, than courses taught in a
traditional classroom, because they require excellent time management skills and dedication.




                                                                                                  www.grantham.edu     11
     Student support
     One fear many students have about online education is that they’ll be all alone in their studies. This isn’t the case
     at all. Like students attending class on campus, you’ll have to study, read chapters and complete assignments
     independently. But if you have a question, you don’t have to wait until the next time your class meets to get an
     answer; your professor is just an e-mail, chat session or phone call away. You can also take advantage of course
     discussion boards and chat virtually with fellow students about your questions. In addition, look for online
     institutions that offer academic and student progress advising, tutoring and mentoring. Students also have
     the opportunity to work and communicate with other students, faculty and subject matter experts outside of
     their geographic location. Collaborating with people from different areas and levels of expertise enhances the
     education experience.


     Immediate results
     Many distance learning programs have online testing, which allows you to complete an exam or assignment
     and receive your grade right away. Because you aren’t waiting one or two weeks to get your grade back, you are
     able to progress through your studies at a much faster rate and gain a better understanding of the subject matter
     areas. At most distance learning institutions, you also have access to your student account, online classes, course
     material and grades 24 hours a day, seven days a week.


     Flexible class sizes
     With distance learning, the size of the classrooms is not as limited as in a traditional school setting. The
     classroom sizes of on-ground schools can’t keep up with the growing number of college students, so distance
     learning has become and will continue to be a viable choice for many. Distance education also allows for a large
     variety of courses offerings because classes aren’t restricted by time and location.


12   Grantham University | www.grantham.edu
 Online Versus On-Campus: The Pros and Cons


                              Online Education
Pros                                                 Cons
Convenience:                                         Time management required: You must be disciplined
• Do you have a full-time job?                       to complete assignments according to established
• Are you an active member in the military?          deadlines.
• Do you have family members, including
  children, at home in your care?                    Limited face-to-face interaction: You meet other
                                                     students in an online setting, but it is typically via chat
Online education is ideal because of the flexible    rooms or class discussion threads. If you don’t mind
nature of classes offered, enabling you to           independent learning with limited live interaction, this
complete your degree while balancing work and        won’t be a problem.
family responsibilities.
                                                     Natural technology problems: Without the Internet,
Ability to set your own pace: Some online            you cannot complete your online course work. Make
degree programs have frequent start dates – some     sure you have a backup plan in the event of a power or
even weekly. This allows you the opportunity         connectivity issue.
to complete courses and achieve your degree
quickly.

Affordability: Not all online degrees are more
affordable than traditional or community college
rates, but some are. However, enrolling in an
online degree program does ensure you don’t
have to spend extra money on gas, parking or
child care.

Cultural diversity: Online students are in class
with faculty members and students from around
the globe.

Technology benefits: Taking classes online and
becoming familiar with modern technology will
help you in your career. A wide range of practical
experience with computer software could set you
apart from the competition.


                                                                         Grantham University | www.grantham.edu    13
     Online Versus On-Campus: The Pros and Cons

                          Traditional Education
      Pros                            Cons
      Networking opportunities: You meet more                Strict scheduling: Enrolling in a specific
      people face-to-face while attending a traditional      course at a traditional university can present
      university. As a result of networking, your            scheduling challenges. If a desired course is
      contacts could grow, and your networking               only offered during the day, it can be difficult
      opportunities could increase.                          for working adults to work it into their full-
                                                             time job.
      Experience new places: For some students,
      experiencing a different part of the country           Affordability: Cost will vary, but admission
      (or the world) is a valuable part of going to          into a traditional university, especially if it’s
      school in terms of maturity, diversity and social      out of state, won’t come cheap.
      opportunity.
                                                             Limited personal attention: This is
      On-site facilities: Students who enroll in a           particularly true in
      traditional university have the opportunity to         larger state universities,
      take advantage of the institution’s many facilities,   where undergraduate
      including the student union, gym and athletic          lecture halls packed
      stadium.                                               to the brim with
                                                             400-500 students is
                                                             commonplace. One-
                                                             on-one instruction is
                                                             not common in this
                                                             type of setting.




14   Grantham University | www.grantham.edu
Preparing for Online Learning




               Grantham University | www.grantham.edu   15
     The Power of Family Support: Topics for Discussion
     Before Starting Your Online Degree Program
     When contemplating your college education, don’t underestimate the power of family
     support. Your education experience is a team effort, and their understanding and
     assistance is critical to your success. Organize your thoughts around the following five
     topics, and you’ll be well on your way to a cohesive family plan for your education.




        1
                     Explain why you are going back to school.
                     Outline your choice in specific terms. Mention the kind of job or promotion that a new degree
                     can yield. Explain how your earning potential and job security will improve (http://www.bls.
                     gov/spotlight/2010/college/). Consider the issue from their perspective, and discuss items that
                     will directly impact their lives in the short term and the long run.




        2
                     Explain that an online degree makes sense for you and
                     your situation.
                     Share the reasons behind your choice of online education. Distance learning is flexible,
                     convenient and as effective (if not more so) as classroom learning. Anticipate a level of
                     skepticism. Describe some of your initial concerns about online education and discuss how
                     you got beyond them. Illustrate that you have conducted careful research into the different
                     educational options available to you.




        3
                     Discuss the impact of tuition on the family budget.
                     Be up front in talking about how you will pay for college. Assure family members that tuition
                     assistance is available, and that you understand the application process. Discuss your employer’s
                     tuition reimbursement program, if applicable. If some corners are to be cut, be fair and show
                     how everyone will have to contribute. Remind your family that your education is essentially an
                     investment in the entire household.




        4
                     Tell your family how they can help you succeed.
                     Establish ground rules for your study time. Set reasonable expectations for your study hours.
                     And be prepared to consistently enforce these rules until the new family routine is firmly in
                     place.




        5
                     Estimate a timeline of goals and hurdles.
                     Both kids and adults respond well to timelines, rather than open-ended periods of change. Even
                     though you can’t promise when you’ll graduate, you can provide a reasonable estimation. Let
                     family members share in the excitement of your progress. Plan celebrations for milestones along
                     the way, such as completion of courses.

                     Be calm and open. Make sure everyone’s ideas are heard. Your kids and partner need to feel
                     valued, too, so don’t let the conversation end on a note about you. And above all – express your
                     thanks for their cooperation.

16   Grantham University | www.grantham.edu
What to Consider in Your Search for the Best
Online University
Once you decide that an online program is a good fit for you, there are several points to
consider as you begin looking for the right institution. Take a look …


Pay close attention to scheduling requirements. Many schools offer flexible scheduling, but not
all their scheduling may qualify you to use various forms of student aid. For example, if you are using Federal
Student Aid, you may have to follow a set course schedule, which can rule out flexible, student-paced programs.

Explore all fees associated with any program. While it is easy to fall into the program with the
lowest tuition to save money, it’s also easy to get into a program with many hidden fees that suddenly run up the
program cost. For example, some programs include books in their tuition costs while others do not. This simple
difference can mean hundreds of dollars each term in saved cash.

Utilize social media to check out the prospective online colleges. With the popularity of many
online networking sites like Facebook®, Twitter® and LinkedIn®, it is easy to find a virtual community of students
and alumni. This is a great place to plug into the overall feel of a school, see how happy current students are and
ask general questions.

Explore every aspect of the online colleges’ websites. Taking the time to click through each
college’s website and see how it compares with others is also a good glimpse into the overall school. You will find
that the web presence of many schools varies and that some less-than-reputable schools are poorly represented
online. The website should be user-friendly with easy access to information.

Find a useful contact at the school. Beyond a useful website, another key source of information when
comparing online colleges is to find a knowledgeable staff member at the college to answer questions. Many
people do not utilize student advising to its fullest potential, and this is actually a very important part of finding
the best-fit program. If you find your first contact at the school less than knowledgeable, don’t be afraid to ask for
a supervisor to get the answers you need.

Learn how the institution deals with deployments. For military students, coordinating classes and
coursework with deployment is an important issue. Find out how military-friendly the school is. Determine if
the school’s advisors communicate with faculty in order to resolve deployment-related scheduling issues.

Taking special care to compare all aspects of online colleges will allow you to make an informed choice as you
prepare to jump back into school. With the variety of programs available, there is no need to settle for a
program that does not fit your scheduling needs, interests or even job requirements. In order to find the
information you need to make the final decision, taking the time to compare and research is key.




                                                                              Grantham University | www.grantham.edu     17
     10 Mistakes to Avoid When Exploring Your Options
     As you get closer to deciding upon an online university, there is much to consider. Don’t
     let the following mistakes get in your way of making the best choice for your education.


       1      Procrastination. Where will you be if you do nothing? If you are not sure what degree is best, ask
              your admissions representative for help.


       2      Sticking with the big names. Don’t eliminate an online college or university just because it is
              not an institution whose name you immediately recognize.

              Being timid. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. In fact, put together a list of questions before talking
       3      with admissions representatives.

              Ruling out a school based on cost. Don’t be afraid of initial costs presented by a university.
      4       Financial aid, credit for life experience, scholarships and tuition payment plans may make a college or
              university far more affordable than it appears to be.

              Discounting the attention of admissions reps. Don’t “blow off ” any admissions
       5      representatives who may call you. Take advantage of the opportunity to learn more about their online
              degree programs. They should be able to offer valuable information on programs and admission
              requirements.

              Relying upon memory. Don’t assume you’ll remember the details. Take good notes when you
      6       read college brochures and speak with admissions representatives. The comparison worksheet on the
              next page is a great way to record your experience with the various schools you are considering.

             Being discouraged by financial aid forms. If you need help understanding the financial aid
      7      forms, most online colleges have staff members who will be happy to help you.

             Settling. Don’t go with the first program you discover. Be thorough in your search. For instance,
      8      a general business program might not serve you as well as a program with a focus in accounting,
             marketing, management, etc. Conversely, a more general, broadly based degree program in business
             may better meet your needs. Get the degree that fits your background and career goals.


      9     Going it alone. Don’t keep your interest in continuing your education a secret. Give friends, family
            members and colleagues the chance to share their experiences and offer you important encouragement
            and support.

            Being intimidated. Be confident in your decision to return to school. If you have good academic
     10     and time management skills, are motivated, and have the support of your closest family members and
            friends, your chances of achieving your degree (and career) goals are high.




18   Grantham University | www.grantham.edu
                                                                Interaction with University                    Variety of
                                         Financial Assistance                                 Flexibility                     Faculty   School of Interest
                                                                      Representative                        Degree Programs



                                                                                                                                                       School B
                                                                                                                                                       School C
                                                                                                                                                                  Online University Comparison Worksheet
                                                                                                                                                       School D




Grantham University | www.grantham.edu
19
   Student Checklist: Preparing for a Successful
   E-Learning Experience
   Start off on the right foot with your online education. Here are a few of the essentials for
   a successful – and easier – student experience.



     Time. Know, on average, how many hours to set aside for schoolwork.



     A dependable computer with the typical Microsoft Office programs, such
     as Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint


     Reliable Internet access


     Ability to access your school email account daily


     The school’s tutorial (typically provided) for navigating through the online
     learning environment and accessing valuable school resources (e.g., the
     library, learning center, tutoring, etc.)

     Technical support


     Textbooks. To cut costs, consider buying used or renting.


   Beyond the essentials you need to consider, universities typically provide the following online tools to help keep
   you on track for a successful virtual experience:
       • Announcement boards / course syllabi to stay current on assignments
       • Discussion board to post questions and responses
       • Chat area to interact with other students and the instructor
       • Grade book for checking progress




20 Grantham University www.grantham.edu
20 Grantham University || www.grantham.edu
Now What?
                ?
So now that you have given this eBook an in-depth read, what
do you think about this mode of learning for you? Ready to dive
in and get started on your online degree?

Visit Grantham’s website at www.grantham.edu or call us at
(866) 645-2130, and we will be happy to share information
on our accredited online degree programs or tuition
assistance possibilities.

We look forward to hearing from you!


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