My experience with online learning was not at all what I expected. My undergraduate experience was very intimate with a small group and many classes with the same professor (who was also my advisor). The experience I have had online is the complete opposite by virtue of what it is…distance learning. I had to seek out personal interaction that I had previously had plenty of.
The plus side of online learning is the ability to make my own schedule. I “attend classes” in my office where my children can wander down for my attention. Most often I give it to them. I am able to access lectures at my convenience and not just Tuesdays and Thursdays from 6:00 to 9:00.
One thing that I have had to call upon is my self- motivation. I happen to be a self-motivating individual. I have found that creating a schedule, validated by a support team and sticking to the schedule allowed me to stay ahead or at least on track with the assignments. I love the cliché “you get out of it what you put into it” and never get tired of repeating it.
I had put off going back to school for the simple reason that I did not think I would be able to juggle a career, family and school work. I would not be able to do it without the help of my family also known as my support team.
Technology has come a long way in just a few years and it is taking education to the next realm. I don’t have the most elaborate equipment but it suits the needs that distance learning necessitates. I use an E Machine EL 1850, Logitech speakers, a Dynex web cam and a Canon MX 330. This is all low end equipment costing under $1000.00 but I assure you that it has met the technical requirements needed.
Good Luck, Thomas