You’ve decided to go for it and earn your degree online. Pursuing an online education is a great option for many people. It is important, however, to go into it with your eyes wide open, fully aware of the pitfalls that some distance education students experience.
By being aware of the mistakes that online college students frequently make during their quest for an education, you will be better able to avoid making them too.
1. Becoming the Household Hermit
While socializing too much can lead to all sorts of problems, not socializing enough is a mistake too. You need to maintain a healthy balance between study and fun. Neglecting friendships and opportunities to let your hair down can not only lead to burn-out, but it may also make you resent your studies and give them up. Remember that while studying is important, everyone benefits from a little down time. Live a little.
Setting realistic and achievable goals will help you keep on track and find time for your family and friends. “10 Tips for Finding Life Balance in College,” offers helpful advice on setting goals, managing time, and learning to study effectively.
2. Becoming a Martyr
Another common mistake that online students make is sticking to a major–even though they hate it so much they’d rather have their ear hairs pulled out one at a time. Slowly.
It is important to remember that a potentially high salary will not compensate for the fact that you will dread going to work every morning. In fact, according to “5 Ways Hating Your Job Can Ruin Your Health,” there are a plethora of potentially dangerous side effects that can be linked to doing work you hate such as weight gain, sleep deprivation, and a compromised immune system. The wiser choice would be to find something that you love to do and comes naturally to you. After all, if you love what you do and you’re good at it, you will excel–and become successful.
3. Becoming a Procrastination Pro
Ignoring something will not make it go away. It will only make it more urgent and ominous as the deadline approaches. And it is a mistake that many online students make.
What is it about online education that leads many students to say, “Why do today what I can put off until tomorrow?” First of all, working at home is filled with distractions. Whether you are tempted by social media, computer games, the TV, or the great outdoors, you need to remain focused. When you have completed your studies, reward yourself with The Young and the Restless or a little one-on-one time with the Playstation.
Secondly, as “4 Common Mistakes While Earning an Online Degree” states, “Without a teacher checking over their shoulders, students are uniquely responsible for their own habits.” You must devise and follow a study schedule that ensures that you are not only on track, but also able to cope with unexpected circumstances that may arise.
4. Becoming Dazed and Confused
When you are in an actual physical classroom filled with other learners, you often have the benefit of learning from one another. As an online student, you may not be afforded this opportunity. That is why is it very important to ask for help when you need it.
Does the Pythagorean theorem have you confused? Don’t wait until right before your exam to seek assistance. When presented with a concept that makes your head explode, get in touch with your online professor or tutor as soon as possible. They are there to help you learn, so take advantage of their wealth of knowledge.
By stepping carefully and avoiding these potential landmines, you will be able to become a College Graduate. And begin the first chapter of the life of your dreams.
Did you pursue an online degree? What hurdles did you have to overcome and how did you do it?