Distance education at universities has grown over the years to become one of the most popular ways for international students to pursue a Bachelor’s or Master’s degree. This includes a diverse audience of learners from busy adults looking to upgrade their career, stay at home mothers, as well as young people who want to study abroad but can’t afford it.
So, how do online degrees offered by international universities manage to provide quality education to a diverse set of learners? In other words, how is online learning reshaping the world of global education?
Here is their recipe for success:
1. Rolling applications for online degrees make it easy to get started
Regular online Masters offered by international universities have 1 or 2 application deadlines throughout the year, which means you have only a maximum of 2 opportunities each year to apply for your degree. Online degrees are much more flexible, as they usually let you apply on a rolling basis. Whenever you’re ready, start your application and you won’t have to worry about deadlines. A streamlined application process also means you’ll get the admission decision faster.
Here are a few online universities where you can study online:
- Royal Roads University
- RMIT University
- University of Birmingham Online
- Online Open University UK
- Walden University
2. Course flexibility means learning whenever you have the time
Distance education has scored high on flexibility for students. Additionally, remote access to distance learning courses helps students worldwide to study from the comfort of their homes, or while on the move. Students remain independent and empowers them to organize their own schedule. As an added bonus, they get to develop their time management skills by managing a learning calendar.
3. A faster track to graduation
More universities offer intensive online Master programmes that allow students to graduate earlier, so they can get a job faster or resume focusing on their career. You might find a lot of Masters that take only 1 year or 1 year and a half to graduate. You should take into consideration the fact that shorter learning periods mean you will have to dedicate more time per week for your studies.
By keeping learning time more compressed, degrees focus on teaching the essentials and, once again, place the responsibility of going more in-depth on the student.
4. Innovative curricula adapted to student needs
To be able to sustain a faster learning pace while getting course essentials through, curriculums of online degrees need to be agile and modern. These may focus on getting the main point across through questions and answers live during class (by live text) or on class forums where teachers regularly post answers.
The teaching style of the faculty and the course structure have also evolved in order to align with the required standards of the current job market. Distance learning courses ranging from humanities to management, feature industry-relevant curricula and make them more applicable and accountable in the job industry.
5. Online learning resources and platforms are updated regularly
Instant access and quality resources are important aspects of distance learning. Students need to be able to access information as fast as possible and make effective use of their time. Online learning platforms have been improved to be reliable, easy to use and fast.
Lessons are designed to be easy to skim through while effectively offering information. Online degrees aim to stay always one step ahead so the course materials are kept constantly updated to relevant industry standards. Lessons are created to fit on all modern devices, enabling students to learn on the go. Video, audio and written media are blended together to make up a rich learning experience.
Forums where students can share their questions and knowledge also make up a big part of online learning.
6. Better career focus
Online degrees offer career benefits to both employee and employer. People who already have a job have the chance to advance their skills while not having to quit their job and virtually investing in their future career advancement. At the same time, employers get to keep an employee and not see them go because they don’t have the time to focus on their career development.
People who are just starting their career can get a fast knowledge boost that will help them get a good job easier.
An online degree can also be a versatile tool for people looking to change their careers. They can make the transition smoother and learn the tools of the new trade while still being able to earn and pay for their studies and living expenses.
7. Blended study options combining online and on-campus options
Distance learning doesn’t have to be taught fully online. Blended-study Master’s degrees offer most of their classes online but still require students to take regular on-campus classes at set intervals. This way, students who also want to get the international experience won’t miss on it, while not having to invest heavily in living in a foreign country.
Distance learning might be the perfect contender for providing education for all
Distance learning degrees have managed to make education more accessible and to bring a significant contribution to the global education goal – “education for all”. The fact that the age average group of students is decreasing towards 30 years old is proof that more young international students are seeking online learning options in addition to adults looking to change careers or advance.