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    Things you should consider before starting a distance learning program

    By Siva Kumar|7th Jun 2017
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    You are probably already well-aware of the power of distance learning and are already considering enrolling in an institute that offers it. Well, just like any significant endeavor you undergo in your life, you have to find the time to know beforehand some valuable tips that could save you from future hurdles. While most offer the advantage of being able to study at your own pace and getting to do so via online platforms alone, not all distance learning programs are the same. 

    There are various setups that could be amenable and preferable to some students but not to others. That being said, one of the important factors that you should take into consideration is how you would be able to make the most of what this kind of educational method offers. You should also acknowledge the fact that distance learning is no different from a regular enrollment in a college or university; the same requirements and standards of quality are given to distance learning programs that they offer. We took the liberty to outline some of the most important guidelines that you always have to take into consideration below.

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    Always Check the Accreditation of the School

    Most educational institutes that offer distance education should be able to readily supply proof of accreditation. This is highly important as there are certain companies and employers that do not recognize the certificates and degrees earned through distance education programs if they are not accredited by the concerned agency. The same can be said if you decide to transfer or pursue a higher degree. Failing to do this might result in wasted effort, 

    Find Time to Learn Who You Are as A Learner

    In order to optimize your time as a student, you have to be well-aware of who you are as a learner at present. How will you be able to tackle the potential challenges in your chosen degree? This is all the more true if you intend to study while still keeping your job. You also have to take note of the fact that distance learning primarily leans more towards visual learning than others (like auditory, for instance). 

    Of course, this entails knowing whether you suit visual learning or not. Doing so would only spare you from the hassle of regretting that distance learning was not for you from the outset. Being in the know that you fit distance learning perfectly would also serve as vital motivation, which would only serve to help you in finishing your course and acquiring your degree smoothly. 

    How Would Your Prospective Degree Help Advance Your Career?

    Of course, prior to committing yourself to a degree, you should already be sure that it would be the best choice from which you can get the most benefits in your chosen career path. This also applies to professionals who intend to make a 360-degree career change. Of course, your interest in the prospective degree comes into play as well. This is the only way for you to achieve that optimal frame of mind that would greatly aid you in finishing the course, acquiring the new skills that your current career demands, and ensuring your overall development as a person and professional.

    How Long Will the Course Last?

    If you are like many professionals out there who are also juggling between work and study, then you are already aware of just how valuable a resource time is. Most master degrees take around 1 to 2 years to finish. Being aware of how long you should take a program would allow you to better schedule your studies and tasks as well as do the adjustments that need to be done once the program starts. 

    Additionally, as far as time is concerned, you also have to be extra aware of significant dates (like exams and tests) as distance learning doesn’t always make such information readily acquirable due to the absence of direct communication. That being said, you should make it a point to maintain a consistent stream of communication with your fellow students and lecturers (most programs communicate either via a single platform or through emails). 

    What’s good is that most institutes offer direct assistance to students who choose to enroll in their distance learning masters degree programs. Plenty of reputable schools offer services like advising, tutoring, and even career services that ensure that you would land the right job after finishing the degrees they offer.

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