Saturday, October 9, 2010

How Online Courses Help Teachers Professionally and Personally

Online courses are gaining in popularity by the day; they’re sought after not just by adults who want to go back to school after a gap, but also by professionals who are looking to advance their careers and augment their earning potential. Today, the quality of education provided online is as good as that provided at any regular university; so if you do your research carefully and choose your school and course accordingly, there’s much to gain in the process.

If you’re in the teaching field and are looking for ways to develop professionally and grow personally, online courses are tailor-made to help you achieve these two goals.

Professional development happens through online courses because:
  • You improve your qualifications and academic credentials. This allows you to apply for positions higher up than the one you hold and provides you with the skills and knowledge required to climb up the career ladder.
  • You learn much more than you know now, and your enhanced knowledge and growing skill set allow you to compete with the best in the industry and still hold your own comfortably.
  • If you want to switch careers – say if you feel like moving to teaching at college from teaching at school – online courses are the best way to achieve your goal. They allow you to stay at your current job even as they prepare you for the one you’re aspiring for.
You also achieve personal growth when you choose to study online because:
  • You learn how to manage time better – your plate is full what with studying, attending classes, handling your responsibilities at the workplace, and taking care of familial and social duties, so unless you’re good at allocating time for each and balancing them all, you’re not likely to succeed.
  • You cultivate the discipline required to concentrate all your energies on the job at hand (be it studying or working) so that you can get it done in the shortest possible time and in the most effective manner.
  • You learn how to multi-task effectively without compromising the quality of the work you’re doing on all those tasks.
  • Earning a degree gives you a sense of personal achievement, especially if you’ve done it against all odds or at a time in your life when people have written you off for various reasons. The older you are, the more you appreciate completing a degree.
Remember however, that the benefits of online education are realized only if you make the effort to choose the right school and the right course – they must be accredited and serve to enhance your job skills and provide you with a means to move up professionally. Also, because you’re most likely going to be studying and working simultaneously, you must have excellent time management skills and also possess the required discipline and dedication to devote your energies to both tasks without shirking one for the other.

This guest post is contributed by Carrie Oakley, who writes on the topic of online colleges. Carrie welcomes your comments at her email id: carrie.oakley1983(AT)gmail(DOT)com.