Online University
10 Students 10 Questions 10 Answers

What are the pros and cons of studying online?

  • Angelina Casarez Angelina Casarez

    The pros of studying online are the convenience it offers and that I am able to study at the pace I set for myself. I appreciate that I am able to tweak my study schedule as needed so that I can focus on raising my family.

    One con to online education is that you often experience a significant delay in response to your questions. I don’t think that is the teacher’s fault, though. That is just the way online communication works. In a normal class, when a topic is difficult to understand, you have the ability to ask your question right then and there and you receive an answer immediately. Whereas when I have a question in this format, I have to e-mail my teacher and he might not get back to me until the following day.

    All things considered, I knew that online school was the best option for me because I need to be able to keep working in order to help provide for my family. Online school is the quickest and most convenient route to finishing my education.

  • Tanya Faison Tanya Faison

    One of the pros of studying online is that I have access to my classes at all times. My schedule changes frequently, so I need a program that allows for those changes. Compared to a traditional brick-and-mortar school, I have much greater access to my classes. I take comfort in knowing that I can access my classes whenever necessary.

    Another significant benefit of an online program is that you can often complete your degree more quickly than you could at a traditional school. Of course, that depends on the type of courses that you are taking to meet your goal. But online schools often offer accelerated learning options to help you finish sooner.

    One of the cons of studying online is that it tends to be more expensive. Even after the initial cost of tuition, online schools sometimes include fees that add up to a significant amount of money, so you need to watch out for that.

    Another con of studying online is that you do not have face-to-face interaction with your professors. I feel that the lack of interpersonal interaction detracts from the online learning environment. In a traditional institution, you have the ability to openly converse with your instructor in real time. But in an online environment, you have to rely on indirect written communication.

  • Jody Galis Jody Galis

    The pro of studying online is that you can complete your degree at your own pace and convenience. For example, American Intercontinental University makes our coursework and lectures available to us at any time, rather than forcing us to be in a specific building for a certain block of time like on a regular campus. All of the class lectures are recorded so that we can access them on our own time.

    Some of the cons of studying online are that it requires a very high degree of independence and self-motivation. In order to succeed in an online program, you have to be dedicated and organized. No one is there to tell you that your work is due. Instead, you are assigned a project at the beginning of the week and you have to be able to schedule your time around that assignment to get it done.

    When I was deciding which school and program I should attend, I had to think about how my own circumstances would affect my ability to pursue my education. When I applied, I was working full time, so I needed a bachelors degree program that would fit around my job and still allow me to be with my family.

    Another consideration was whether my books and my software would be included in my tuition. Since I am a digital design student, I need design suites like Adobe, which costs several hundred dollars if you don’t purchase it through your school. There are a lot of outside costs that can be associated with getting your degree, so I wanted to make sure those were covered. At American Intercontinental University, they were.

  • Krystal Gransbury Krystal Gransbury

    The most significant pro of studying online is that it allows me to earn my degree while I continue to work full time. It makes for a busy schedule since I work for 8 hours and then come home to do school work for a couple of hours after that. But it is important for me not to give up my income while I am in school.

    While I appreciate the ability to keep working, a major con to online school is that the professors don’t seem to be that invested in me personally. That means the feedback that I receive from them is often lacking in substance and sincerity. Once, I even got some remarks back from a teacher that were addressed to “Kevin,” which makes me think that my teacher was not paying attention to the work that he was grading. It has been a challenge to communicate about grades and my academic progress with my professors.

  • Susan Griffin Susan Griffin

    The main pro to going to school online is the fact that I am able stay at home with my children while I study. Because of the flexible schedule, I don’t have to sacrifice my first priority, which is to be a mother, in order to get my education. It is very convenient for me.

    Some drawbacks to online schooling are the technical requirements and the potential for miscommunication. For instance, you always have to have a working computer. That became a problem for me when my computer broke last June and I had to withdraw from school until I could afford to buy a replacement. Another problem is that communication can break down due to distance and the lack of face-to-face interaction. We work in learning teams for many of my classes, and the teams are made up of students in many different time zones. It can be difficult to get the team organized when we can’t just sit down together.

  • Alleisha Heard Alleisha Heard

    The pros and cons of studying online are different for everyone, but what I like the most about online schooling is that it fits my learning style better. I don’t learn very well by sitting in a classroom and listening to a lecture because it is easy to get distracted and either miss what the teacher is saying or simply mishear it when I am trying to take notes. But with online school, I am in charge of my own learning. I can see and read the material myself and if I get confused, I just go back and reread a passage.

    In addition to the fact that online school suits my learning style well, there were other factors that I considered when I decided to go to school online. Specifically, at the time that I started my associates degree, I had a 1-year-old to care for. If I was to go to an on-campus school, I wouldn’t really be a stay-at-home mom anymore because I would have to drive him to daycare every day. But by taking classes online, I was able to avoid that hassle and be there to watch my child grow up.

  • Brandon Johnston Brandon Johnston

    The biggest pro to online education is that it allows people to fit studies into their work schedule. In my case, I decided to pursue my bachelors degree online because I needed a flexible program that wouldn’t negatively affect my ability to work. Simply put, I didn’t have time to attend an on-campus school and sit in a classroom on a regular basis. So an online program is great because it allows me to study at different times of the day, whether that means hitting the books early in the morning or late at night.

    However, a con to studying online is the lack of personal interaction that it entails. Classroom discussions are simulated through an online forum, but it isn’t the same as a live debate. It makes for a completely different learning experience. I think that video chatting has great potential application in the realm of online education, but my program did not utilize that technology.

  • Nancy Lockett Nancy Lockett

    The greatest pro of studying online is that I don’t have to leave my house to go to school. I don’t have to spend the gas money to get to class and I don’t have to be anywhere at a certain time. I can log online at any time that fits my schedule.

    However, a con is that I find it difficult to make personal relationships with my classmates online. One of the most important parts of going to college is building relationships with people who think like you and who can expand your way of thinking. Building such relationships online is a challenge. You really have to put yourself out there to create and maintain friendships online.

    When deciding whether or not to study online, I thoroughly researched the curriculum of the program that I was considering. I appreciated that I was able to actually go onto the University of Phoenix website and see some of the classes that I would take. I compared the class list to the local brick-and-mortar community college and I decided online school was right for me.

  • Cynthia Palmer Cynthia Palmer

    The biggest pro to online education is the convenience it affords me. At first, I considered studying on-campus, but with my work schedule that was impossible. I work 12-hour shifts with rotating days off, so it wasn’t an option to attend regular classes. But since I study online, I can do my schoolwork whenever I am available, even if that is at 6:00 a.m. or 11:30 at night. If it wasn’t for the flexibility of online education, I wouldn’t be in school at all right now.

    But the main con to online school is that you will never succeed if you do not have excellent time management skills. The deadlines are ever-present and inflexible, which means that you will have to motivate yourself to do your work whenever you have free time. That is particularly true if you are working while you go to school. There is simply zero room for procrastination, because if you are not dedicated to obtaining your degree, then you will miss your deadlines and waste your time.

  • Justin Pettyjohn Justin Pettyjohn

    The biggest pros to studying online are the convenience and the technological knowledge that you gain. Online programs are convenient because they fit easily into my schedule. For example, when I first began to study online, I was in the U.S. Air Force. I wasn’t sure if an online school would be as good as a traditional education, but I felt like it was time to buckle down and get my schooling done. My online classes fit with my military work schedule, which was inconsistent at the best of times. I also think that studying online makes sense these days, because the world is more reliant on technology than ever before. Online school helps students to understand how a computer functions and that they need to keep it well-maintained.

    Online school has been a great choice for me, but 1 of the drawbacks is that I don’t get to associate with others as much as I would like. I am a people person, and I like conversation and interaction. It isn’t impossible to make personal connections with people while studying online, but it is more difficult. That can affect my studies too. For example, in a traditional classroom, I could talk to my teacher immediately if I had a question and then I would receive an answer. With online school, I have to accept that there will be a delay in response time to any of my questions.