Although online schools have been around since 1989, when the University of Phoenix opened its first online campus, and according to the Sloan Consortium, in 2009, one in four college students were taking at least one online course, a majority of students are still skeptical about pursuing an online education. They have many questions, but do not know where to turn for answers. A search for online education resources simply results in hundreds of websites selling online degrees, with little useful or unbiased information. Many sites offer to help students determine whether or not online schooling is the right option for them by providing checklists or online quizzes. However, even these resources fail to provide answers to alleviate, or confirm, the fears of millions of distrustful college students around the nation.
In an effort to help students cut through the curtain of mystery surrounding online education, we asked students around the nation to tell us their top three concerns regarding online education. From these, we compiled a list of the ten most commonly asked questions about online schools. And then we went out and asked ten online students, from various schools and at various points in their educational careers, to help us figure out the truth regarding online education.
Our goal is not to promote or denounce online schools, but rather to provide students with honest information, so that they can make informed decisions regarding whether or not online education is right for them.