I have noticed that some people express an interest in being an online student, but they don’t follow through because they have so many unanswered questions and don’t know where to find answers. Never fear, an online student is here! I’ve got some answers to the most commonly asked questions about online education!
Q. Is being an online student hard?
A. Well, it’s not easy! But it depends on what you consider “hard.” The reason I say it isn’t easy is because I feel like the workload is sometimes higher than face-to-face classes. Because there is no lecture to attend, you must read each assigned chapter. You spend a lot of time teaching yourself, which I love! But it isn’t for everyone. Online professors usually require you to post to the class discussion board weekly, or every other week. That can become time consuming.
BUT… being an online student has it’s perks, like I can “go to class” whenever I want, wherever I was (as long as there is wifi) and I can wear what I want (some of you do this in face-to-face classes anyway).
Q. How does advising work?
A. Advising happens online for most. You usually have to pull up your own information online (MyMav), then you figure out what classes you need to take next. It is up to you to email your advisor and tell him/her what classes you will be signing up for. They may have to unlock some classes for you, check for prerequisites, or make sure this class is available. The advisors are ALWAYS there for you through email and phone. You are not completely on your own just because you’re an online student. You still have a support system!
Q. Will I only be using e-books?
A. No. I personally don’t like eBooks and never use them for college. Just like in face-to-face classes, you are free to get any type of book you like, as long as it is the assigned book for the course! So you don’t HAVE to get e-books, but you can get them if you like.
Q. I can cheat on tests, right? No one will know.
A. NOPE! Most tests are timed and use something called “lock down browser.” This means that you are prevented from opening any other windows on your computer while taking the test. Some professors even require you to record yourself taking the test with a webcam to ensure that you are not cheating. Because tests have a time limit, you really don’t have time to look up answers. However, some professors encourage you to use notes on tests that aren’t timed. This is rare and they will let you know ahead of time!
Q. Will online courses cost less/more than face-to-face?
A. At UTA, no. The prices are the same (at least from my experience). However, some universities change the prices for strictly online programs. This is usually because you are not being charged for gym fees, health clinic fees, and all that other good stuff that is included in your tuition, which means that you cannot use these services. At UTA, in most cases, you are still charged for these services, so you are still able to use them.
That’s all I’ve got for now! Feel free to send me any online questions you may have and I will answer to the best of my ability.