Tony Blair’s Labour party wanted 50% of students to go to university. Since then, tuition fees have risen and many graduates are unemployed. However, there is still a benefit in getting a degree. If you choose the right one, it could put you ahead of your peers but how do you afford the cost of living and the tuition fees?
What happens if you already have a degree but it hasn’t served you well? Some people want to go back to studying a few years later but by that point they have debts they need to clear, need to support themselves and sometimes have a family that they need to support. This is when studying through distance learning is a major benefit.
Study Around Your Own Schedule
Distance learning and studying online allow you to study in your own time. You can work full-time while getting your degree. There are no compulsory classes like there are with other types of learning. You have all the materials, teach yourself and have a tutor to ask questions and marks assignments.
There are some tutorial sessions, especially if you study through the Open University, but you don’t need to attend them. The only things that you will need to book time off work for are your exams—and most courses only have one per module (depending on the module that you do).
Some students take their books with them to work to study on their lunch break while others wait until after the children have gone to bed. You fit the studying around you and do as much or as little work as you can manage.
Some Employers Take the Form of Studying into Account
This can work both ways but there are many employers who hold studying through distance learning higher than other methods. This is for a few reasons.
- They know that you wanted to do this degree and have likely paid for it yourself.
- They know that you have the time management to do your studying around a job and a family, which means you will manage your time in their workplace.
- You have developed life experiences. Most students studying through distance learning do it when they are older and are embarking on a career change.
Having a degree through online learning can dramatically increase your chances of gaining employment. However, you will still need to do something relevant and worthwhile.
Study at Your Own Pace
Studying through full-time institutions does offer more support but there is the risk of not studying at a pace that suits you. You will have to do a four-year course within those four years. You have months of lectures covering different topics at the same time. At the end, you have numerous exams that often cover different material.
When it comes to studying through distance learning, you can study at your own pace—to a point. You usually only take one module at a time, although you can take more if you wish, and only have one exam to study for. However, instead of doing many modules worth a small amounts of credits each, you’ll be doing one module worth 60 credits out of the full 360 that you have to do.
You will have to stick to the schedule during the module for handing in assignments and doing the exam but you can take a break between modules. You can double the time it takes to do a four-year course and, in some cases, take four times as long. This does depend on the course you take and there are some that have to be completed within a certain amount of time, such as law degrees.
Studying through distance learning is beneficial for many people. You have the chance to teach yourself and study around your own schedule. There is some support and you can take longer to complete your degree. However, this is not for everyone. You need to determine your personality and strengths are suitable for distance learning study.