College Advice Blog

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Aug 12, 2010

6 Myths About Online Learning

Myth #1: Online colleges are completely free or cost less than traditional schools.

Fact: Online colleges cost just as much as traditional colleges. The real online colleges are actually traditional colleges that offer online courses and/or degrees. When studying online, you pay the same fee you would pay on campus. Application, registration, book fees, etc. are all required regardless of where you will study.

Myth #2: Online learning is a breeze. 

Fact: Studying online requires more self discipline, organization, and persistence than any traditional classroom. Although, you have professors online, you are for the most part on your own. 
Online Education For Dummies
Myth #3: With online colleges, you can study at your own pace.

Fact: All online courses I have taken have had deadlines every single week! Exams, essays, and everything in between are all expected on a certain date.  If they are not submitted by the deadline, you might get locked out of the submission file and will not be able to submit a given assignment.

Myth #4: With online colleges, you can "attend" class whenever you feel like it.

Fact: From my previous experiences with online classes, most, no, all of my professors had a requirement that students must "attend" class at least 3-4 times a week. By attending, I don't mean just logging in and out. No, you have to actually post something in the discussion boards; that's how your attendance will be taken.

Myth #5: Open-book exams are so easy.

Fact: If you did not study the material, then your results for an open-book exam will most likely be pretty bad. When you take a closed-book exam, you study and thus are prepared. It's the same with open-book, if you don't study, you're not going to ace the exam. You can start digging through the book for the answers, but most online exams are timed, so you'll run out of time pretty fast. 

Myth #6: You don't need to use textbooks with online classes.

Fact: Some people would think since you have the internet literally at your fingertip, then you don't need a textbook. Wrong. I have used my textbook with online courses more than I ever did for traditional classes. I have completely read most textbooks with my online classes and still struggled to make an A. With traditional courses, I barely skim through chapter summaries and I still end up with an A

Never underestimate online learning; always be prepared for anything... 

What are other myths you've heard about online learning?
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