As technological horizons broaden and the information age continues to roll on without showing any signs of abating or slowing down, more and more tertiary institutions and colleges are jumping on board and taking advantage of the opportunity to cast their nets further afield. The Internet and online learning knows no political borders. Universities and colleges can now attract students from as far afield as the other side of the globe! All they need is access to a good Internet connection and a suitable device for accessing it and downloading or completing lessons. In this way, people for whom any type of education beyond secondary school was previously unheard of, can now obtain further education and earn all manner of Associates, Bachelors and even Masters degrees.

The student of today really does have many more options than even a decade ago. All it takes is a willingness to invest the time and effort. Studying online takes a fair amount of self-discipline but for those who are prepared to do it, the sky is literally their limit these days! Furthermore, even if it’s been many years since you last graced the hallowed halls of an educational institution, there are still many options for study available.

Whilst some colleges and universities don’t offer complete online degree programs, they usually still make a number of the courses available online. This allows students the flexibility of being able to combine online learning with a few weekend or night courses, even with a full time day job. For example, if you take firefighter classes online some of the courses do have a classroom component. However, for convenience these 8 hours are often combined into one full day.

Even for those not necessarily looking to get a degree or diploma, there is still an amazing range of online classes available. In fact, think of something you’d like to learn more about and chances are a college or university somewhere will be offering online classes on the subject! It also no longer matters if the institution offering them isn’t within driving distance.

However, it has to be said that self-paced, or self-directed, online learning doesn’t suit everyone. Some people simply learn better in a classroom situation where they can interact with other students and a teacher. Others find they lack the discipline needed to study at home and stay on task. They’re easily distracted by all the other things going on online – social media, online games, forums, surfing! In these cases, students would be better off attending college instead of struggling to do it online.

So who does benefit from online learning? Busy professionals seeking to further their career and earning potential are probably the first to spring to mind. Women looking to rejoin the work force after raising a family are another group. Online study is ideal here because they can do it as their family is growing up and have a degree ready and waiting by the time the family is old enough to fend for themselves. When it comes to online learning the possibilities really are boundless.

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