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The Benefits and Flexibility of Learning Online

January 2018

To meet the demands of today, many institutions are now offering online and hybrid learning formats that enable students of all backgrounds to fulfill their dreams and earn a college degree. Here we recap the challenges of the modern-day student and how institutions are promptly responding to ensure all degrees are within reach.

Challenges of earning a degree in today’s busy world

If you’re an adult, life and work can sometimes get in the way of reaching your educational goals. With such demanding schedules (e.g. deadlines for work, traveling for business or commitments with your family) it can be hard to physically be in a class every day for weeks on end. You’ll need flexibility with your course schedule.

If you’re a traditional student, you might be faced with the same demanding schedules of life and work. Changing demographics, societal and economic factors mean that you can’t always adhere to strictly structured academic settings. You may find yourself in part-time positions or internships that require flexibility in hours.

How Institutions are responding

Some universities and institutions have addressed these student challenges with MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses), generic online courses and automated online cohorts – but it’s argued that the student might miss out on the classroom experience.

One way that Centenary University’s #theVIBE is dealing with these challenges is by offering our Social Media Marketing certification program in a new asynchronous format – not blended – not online – but LIVE.

LIVE classes create a nearly seamless online/on-ground experience. Students come into class as they would ordinarily, with access to dedicated and experienced faculty, but they also have the flexibility of joining the course remotely.

The engine behind our classes is the latest Cisco WebEx technology. Students can see the professor as the robotic camera follows them around the room, comfortably ask questions and see everything the professor projects for the class. Asynchronous class work can happen in real-time across Google Drive documents and social media platforms. Remote students can even share their face and screens with the class (though that is optional).

The many benefits of online learning

As a student, you may find that they are able to focus more intently with an online course. Comfortable work conditions and increased concentration can be helpful for students who are uncomfortable or distracted in a classroom.

Also, if you’re looking to avoid prolonged or strenuous commutes, you may also see some gains from being able to connect virtually. This virtual connection can allow students to take classes or participate in programs that would be hard for them to access geographically or economically.

Finally, you may find that taking classes in an online environment gives you the supplemental flexibility when competing for your degree. You can speed up your degree through summer or winter classes that they would otherwise not be able to attend due to location.

As technology progresses, institutions are continually utilizing the advances to ensure that we meet the requirements and flexibility needed to make your educational goals attainable. Centenary understands all these factors and offers Adult undergraduate and graduate programs in an online learning format at our School of Professional Studies as well as traditional graduate programs.

For more information on Centenary’s online programs, please contact CentUAdmissions@centenaryuniversity.edu

— Tim Guella
   Former Director of Social Media, Adjunct Instructor

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