Parents and students who are graduating school are wondering about what course their education is going to take. There’s no doubt that concerns exist. Location, costs, social life, major and other factors play an important role in choosing the postsecondary educational institute. Luckily, the development of the internet and technology, as well as advancement in the college educational system introduced the term of online colleges. Here’s what sets online college vs. traditional college apart and which you should choose.
Many educational institutions offer an online program that is generally more affordable than a traditional college. There are several reasons why. That makes sense because students likely won’t have to afford physical, paper books, physical presence on the classes and practical work or live on a campus which can be extremely expensive. Online college makes it easier for the institution to manage the bills of property, buildings and classrooms, as well as staff and hygiene.
That said, online colleges will offer cheaper tuition fees as opposed to mortar colleges and universities. The rate for credit hour spans anywhere from $100 to $400. More importantly, some students have to cross the entire country to attend a college, often traveling to other counties and states.
That said, online colleges save them that hustle as the only expense they’d eventually have to make is going to the institution to take their exams, although some colleges have more flexible terms.
As opposed to online colleges, traditional schools are more expensive and come with much harsher conditions than the online college. However, the type of school also dictates the price and conditions for students to study. The national and community colleges are more affordable than private universities like Yale with tuition fees from $30,000 to above $50,000.
More importantly, students have to pay additionally to find a place to live and cover their living expenses, as well as other expenses that may arise. The good news is that many students, especially those who are high-achievers receive scholarships that cover part or entire tuition fees, as well as some of the living expenses.
Generally, the prestigious private universities like Harvard will generally attract students with parents from a richer background, so they’ll be able to afford the tuition fees and living expenses.
The public, state-based, city-based or community universities and colleges can enjoy the more affordable tuition fees. In some places, the tuition fees can come similar to those that the online colleges offer. Another thing that dictates the price of tuition fees is the economy in the country which caused the fees to fly high and become hard to approach too many students. The budgets are smaller, and with that, the number of grants, scholarship and the number of students accepted has decreased.
That’s why students find it difficult to fit in the community colleges and public universities and are looking forward to other forms of education such as online college.
The pros and cons of online college vs. traditional college
Many factors affect whether you will choose an online or traditional college. However, with so many reserves taken by the students and parents alike, the question is, whether you should. In this section of the article, we’ve highlighted all the pros and cons of studying at online or traditional colleges or universities.
Pros of online college
Regardless of your age or working background, you can learn at an online college no matter where you are. You can study topics similar to your professional background, seek new knowledge through different subjects and majors and be on the go the entire time. There are no admission requirements, so you don’t have to worry about criteria like SAT, GMAT or other scores.
Online modeling is great for those who work. It doesn’t require changing your location and traveling on the other side of the country. You can take online classes whether you’re at home, at work, in café, on vacation or anywhere else you want.
Students at an online college can negotiate about discuss the best times to complete their homework, assignment, final project, and other requirements to pass the course with their professor. They can study at their own pace and don’t have to hurry to graduate.
- Less stress
It’s no secret that students at traditional colleges have a problem with dealing with stress and can have challenging environments in terms of competitive students. Online college sets a virtual environment that is more suitable for students who don’t want to deal with excess stress and want to focus on personal enhancement at their own pace.
It’s also worth noting that online learners get to know their test results sooner and have more intuitive access to them. They get immediate feedback from professors during online consultations, with intuitive results of online quizzes in addition to that.
Cons of online college
Although there are many advantages, online college isn’t perfect. Here are some disadvantages that make it less of an attractive option.
- Less social life
While you can enjoy your personal social life and have fun with people from your surroundings, you don’t really get to enjoy the perks of college social life. You won’t be able to join clubs and enjoy the additional privileges of meeting your classmates and participating in group assignments. There are virtual libraries, but some may find online socializing less motivating than face-to-face communication.
- Less practical work
The good side of the traditional college is that there are a lot of clubs and laboratories where students enjoy group assignments and get to socialize in the process. There’s no such thing as an online college. Also, students don’t get to have face-to-face consultations with their instructors as they’d be able to at a traditional college.
Pros of traditional college
Here’s what makes traditional schools more approachable than online colleges.
- Complex practical work
Students, especially at STEM disciplines enjoy the complex practical work set by different classes they have to take. Physics and chemistry laboratory, data collection, group assignments and much more are just a few things that help shape our professional background and prepare students for their career.
- Face-to-face interaction
While online consultation can vastly help students, face-to-face communication with mentor and instructor has proven out to be much more effective because students can point their fingers where they are facing the difficulty and discuss with their instructors about the issue they are facing in real-time. Additionally, traditional students have an easier time communicating with their peers who may also be good enough to solve their problems.
Cons of traditional college
Students of traditional colleges are often urged to relocate to a completely unknown environment which can be extremely stressful. They have to leave their family, friends and ambient, getting used to new cities, new people, larger space and even climate. It takes time and a lot of patience to adapt to a new environment.
As mentioned above, traditional colleges are significantly more expensive, and students shave to come up with ways to get a scholarship and also afford their living expenses. The rising price of education has made many students reconsider their postsecondary education courses.
Which one should you choose?
Online college vs. traditional college has both its benefits and drawbacks. However, it’s up to the individual students to pick what works for them the best. If you don’t feel like traveling too much to study, have difficulties affording college and have already found a job that you’re passionate about, then the online school is a better option.
On the other hand, if you want to dedicate yourself to the post-secondary education, you have the right assets and resources to study, and don’t have to go over the country or aren’t bothered by that to study, choosing a traditional college sounds like a better idea.
Which one did work out for you? Please let us know!