Online Business Schools as a Career Path

Have you ever considered Business School? I did once and after a semester, I never regretted it. But that was when all business courses were taught traditionally. Now, one has a choice. You can still earn a traditional degree, but in addition you can do this online.

You may wonder if getting a degree online is as rigorous and thorough as a traditional course. Just what is the difference? The difference in content is negligible, but the difference in delivery is radical. The traditional courses in accounting, business management, economics, history, math, government, business law, banking, investment counseling, advertisement, and so forth are the core of both curricula, but the traditional course takes place in a particular room, in a particular school and in a particular city; whereas, the online class is not restricted to space and time. A student who is signed for an accounting course can keep up with the course even if he is traveling the world. Also, it is not necessary for the student and teacher to be online at the same time. The student may post a response or an assignment and the teacher will respond in 24 hrs.

The Structure of the Curriculum for Online Business Schools

When a student goes on line, he/she will first see a monitor screen that is divided into panels that are color coded. The first panel is called Announcements and in this link the student can gain information on emergencies, on the instructor's office hours, the grading system, and policies on plagiarism and make up work. When we move down the left margin, we see that all the lectures, exercises and assignments are given along with the criteria of acceptable performance. These criteria are expressed in the form of a rubric. A given number of points are assigned to each task. Some of the tasks assigned are in the form of objective tests. These tests are timed and the student needs to be aware that they will obtain penalties if they do not finish on time. Many of the assignments involve writing, so if the student has a lack of skill in this area, he/she can be referred to tutorials.

Moving to the bottom of the screen, we see a panel with a link called Problems and Solutions. Here the student is encouraged to post any discoveries she has made in navigation. Navigation is basically the skill of moving in sequence from link to link in order to obtain a desired

outcome: post a message, ask a question, acknowledge another student, and so forth. As we move to the center of the monitor, we see a link called Ask the Professor. Here, students may post questions for the instructor to answer There is often a 24 hrs. turnaround for the response. In the center of the screen you will see a link called Discussion Thread. Here the instructor will toss out a prompt or question and the students will respond. The idea is to get the whole class involved and to have students responding to students and not just to the instructor. Sometimes the instructor will respond to a student's answer by referring what the student has said to another student. The idea is to create an atmosphere of exchange. To do this, the instructor will often share his experience related to the prompt. Grading comes next and here the panel takes us to a summary of grades for each student. Their written work, their scores on objective tests, their participation in the Discussion Thread are all given, including an average of the student's work as a whole. These records are invaluable in holding conferences with the student.

Sometimes when there is strong disagreement between student and instructor over a grade, it is necessary for the instructor to have documentation to support what is stated. The student also has access to the summary grade report. This is particularly important if the issue involves legal representation. Also, oftentimes a student will want private counseling with her instructor. This is understandable, for they may wish to discuss personal issues related to the course. For example, they may wish to discuss their health issues. In this case, it is best to set up an exchange in real time using chat or email. Of course, the option of asymmetry is always available if desired. Be sure, if you use the email function that you click on the private conversation button. Otherwise, you may advertise the students' personal issues.

Navigation is the Core Skill of Online Business Schools

Navigation is the very heart of the learning process in an online business school. If the student does not master navigation, it can slow her down and result in a lower performance than need be. Navigation also implies knowing the platform one is using and how to achieve certain ends. From an instructional point of view, one will need to know what is available for the student and how best to guide her. If for, example, a student needs work on grammar, the instructor should know how to connect him with that domain. If a student wants to master APA format (American Psychological Association) then the instructor can direct him. Directions to the online library is another application. Plagiarism is a huge problem in basic course. The student may not understand all the intricacies of plagiarism and, if this is the case, the instructor can direct the student to, a system that matches the student's work with millions of other documents and prints out a percentage of matching text. The instructor will inform the students of what percentage of matching text is acceptable. For proper documentation, the student would do well to gain an understanding from examples and explanations given in APA. Special workshops in APA documentation are often available.

Finally, on the left margin there is a panel labeled Student Lounge. Here the students can gather informally and share virtual coffee and relevant conversation. This panel is non-graded. The major function of this panel is to increase the likelihood of bonding between students. Often, friendships develop and students have an informal support system. This can happen whether one is exploring online business schools or any online class.

The numbers of online business schools, online criminal justice schools and online accounting schools continues to grow as a result of the adoption of distance education technology by traditional colleges, universities and community colleges seeking a cost-effective method of successfully meeting the post-secondary education needs of new and returning college students. It goes without say that each of the online college classes in the accredited online college degree programs requires a technically qualified online adjunct instructor. As a result of this need, there are many adjunct online teaching opportunities that go unfilled every semester. In fact, one of the most productive academic activities a person with an earned graduate degree can engage in when attempting to earn a decent living from college teaching is to pursue an online teaching schedule containing multiple online adjunct jobs.