If you’re thinking about getting your degree online, you might be curious to learn about the benefits of online classes. Aside from the overall convenience and flexibility online courses offer, you’ll be given the opportunity to learn real career skills that you might not pick up in a traditional classroom setting.
Here are five things you’ll learn in your online course that will be critical to your future career success:
1. Online learning requires planning and meeting deadlines, just like your 9-to-5.
Project managers see new projects through from conceptualization to execution. As you go on with your career, eventually you realize that we’re all project managers. Every task we take on at home or at work places us in the pilot’s seat — we get to control our own destiny. The online classroom is the same, as it requires students to work independently to meet required deadlines under weekly time constraints. Online classes are very reflective of how projects are executed in the business world. The next time your boss asks you to get a task done by Friday, you’ll have all the experience you need to make sure it gets done.
2. You’ll become an expert at digital communication, which is crucial in today’s job market.
Most online courses require a lot of written communication. For example, I used to find that there was a lot of face-to-face time at work, but that is now less common. These days, I have many colleagues that work all over the country far from their home offices, and most of their work is done via email. The online classroom is similar. This workspace will give you the perfect balance of repetition and time constraints to hone your written communication skills – because you won’t be working face-to-face with your classmates or instructor.
3. You’ll learn how to take feedback — both good and bad.
The online classroom presents an opportunity for personal development because you will be presented with feedback in writing regarding your submissions. Unlike in the traditional classroom, this will happen without the usual emotional cues that come from an exchange between a professor and a student, a fact that is also reflective of the working world. How do you read through the hidden cues in a message to determine the key takeaways? Are you able to take that feedback and put it into action with little direction? The online classroom is a perfect place to test out your ability to receive and adapt to feedback.
4. Learning online requires a certain level of engagement, and you’re responsible for staying involved.
Online courses generally require a lot of peer-to-peer interaction. Technically, the online classroom requires 100% participation from every student, because in reality, you’re only going to get out of it what you put in. In the traditional classroom, every student who wants to achieve a good grade is required to fully participate. The same goes for online — though the method is a little bit different. Instead of raising your hand during a seminar, you are required to respond to other classmates in online discussion posts and forums. Good news: If you tend to be more introverted, the online classroom will give you a great opportunity to step out of your comfort zone.
5. You’ll learn the ins and outs of research.
In a typical online class, professors will require a lot of written submissions and will also ask for you to include citations from credible sources. In the business world, this skill is invaluable. How do you research a competitor, the industry, or a new piece of software? Which types of research would your supervisor find credible? Being able to do sound, credible research will likely open up doors for you in the future and allow you to work on special projects. With smart research tools, you’ll have the ability to influence the direction of the company you work for.
Ultimately, the process of finding success in the online classroom is different for every student. While there are many different resources available to online students who might need help, they are often responsible for leading their own journeys. If you’re engaged in your courses and open yourself up to learning these useful skills, you will succeed.
If you have questions about how JWU Online can help you achieve your academic goals, call 855-JWU-1881 or email [email protected]. You can also complete the “Request Info” form on this page.