My name is Roberta Barazza. I am an Italian teacher of English and Italian for foreigners. I enjoyed a broad variety of traditional education programmes before I graduated in my first online degree in 2011. The name of this programme has been teaching Italian for foreigners. Today I am working in this profession and started studying for my second online Master - this time on the beautiful topic of 20th century history.How does it feel to study online?
I received my first online Master in September 2011. This Master degree had the same value (60 credits) as a traditional one-year Master completed at any Italian university. What was interesting however was the timing: You could pass the final exam at the latest after 2 years and not before six months after registering. Students had to study 20 modules – either on paper or on your computer. To pass the programme you needed to pass a test - of course online. The entire test consisted of 100 multiple choice questions.
I liked the Master, its content and the way I studied. However, when it comes to the exams I would have liked it, even more, to receive individual feedback on my answers for each question. The only thing I know was what mark I got - but unfortunately until today I do not know which answers were right or wrong. This for me is a pity as it feels like a wasted opportunity for me to learn.Different Masters different experiences
In the first Master, the only human relationship I had with the university was the tutor and some teachers and secretaries. Even during exam time, I took my test without exchanging many words with my colleagues. In the second Master, it is compulsory to connect to a forum and exchange opinions with students and tutors.Advantages of online studies
I like working online very much. I chose these online courses because I liked their topics, first of all. I also considered the fees when I chose on the internet among several kinds of courses. Working online has several advantages: I spare a lot of time as I am not obliged to attend lessons (which I could not attend at all in Rome, for example, as I work and live in the north of Italy); I can study and work at the same time. The online activity does not limit my human contacts. I can contact whomever I like, connected or not connected to the Master. When I attended university I sometimes had problems in my relationship with academics or colleagues. It happens to everybody. Online education prevents students from being stopped or hindered by unhappy human relationships with professors or colleagues. This is an advantage of online education.So how much time does it take to study online?
As regards learning in itself, it takes quite a long time to study for the final exam. It is not a ’light’ work. But I can study whenever I can or I want. I am a full-time teacher and I could not spend too much time attending university courses. Online education is a good solution. I also think that if going to university and attending classes may be more interesting from a human point of view, nevertheless you are likely to write down worse notes than the clear papers you get from online university courses. One more advantage is that you to cover your fees but not costs related to flats or trips to reach university.The vision of my future
I do not need Master degrees for my job. I have a teaching contract for life in secondary schools and the degrees I get do not change much in my career. It is rather a matter of personal interest. I am also interested in a Ph.D. which I would like to begin after finishing the present master. I think I’ll apply for an online Ph.D.