There are a growing number of students enrolling in hybrid or online colleges so that they can take online classes and earn their degree. Before we get into why this is, let’s talk about how many students are actually choosing online colleges and online classes.
How Many Students are Choosing Online Colleges and Online Classes?
According to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), 29.8% of the nearly 20 million students enrolled at degree-granting postsecondary institutions were enrolled exclusively in distance learning courses or in a hybrid of online and on-campus classes.
Of the 20 million students in the study, 73% attended a public college, 20% attended a private non-profit, and 7% (1.3 million) were enrolled in private for-profit college. About 64% of the 1.3 million students who are going to a private for-profit school are enrolled exclusively in distance or online classes (55.5%) or a hybrid of distance and on-campus classes (8.6%).
Additionally, of the 13.5 million 4-year students in the survey, 30% (4.1 million) in the study took at least one online class and 16% (2.1 million) took only online classes. Of the 6.5 million 2-year students, 29% (1.9 million) took at least one online class and 11% (7.3 thousand) took only online classes.
Highest Enrolling Online Colleges
According to the National Center for Education Statistics, the highest enrolling online, for-profit institutions are Kaplan University, The University of Phoenix, Arizona State University Online, and Liberty University.
Top 13 Reasons Why Students Love Online Classes
1. Course Flexibility
Many people participate in online courses because of the flexibility they provide. Online college degrees and programs make it possible for students to work during the day and complete their studies from home at night. Those who spend a lot of time traveling due to work can also complete their education in their spare time. Additionally, many students enjoy taking online courses since they can complete their work at a time that is convenient for them and do not have to sit through long class lectures.
2. Earn Degree While Working
Online colleges are especially convenient for you if you need to earn a professional certificate and cannot quit your job.
3. Student-Centered Curriculum
Since online education is known for its student-centered curriculum, learning online is an ideal means for those who learn best through digital platforms.
4. Unlimited Access to the Material
Students can also re-watch lecture videos, review notes, and go through other online resources anytime they wish. This way, if a concept is unclear, students can review it at their convenience.
5. Improved Online Communication
Students taking online courses are also able to participate in classroom discussions in chat rooms or online forums. This is helpful for students who may be too shy, unable to share an opinion because of time restraints, or have verbal or hearing disabilities while attending classes in a traditional classroom.
Online courses make it possible for all students to participate in discussions. Students are also required to correspond with their teachers and other students via email, which helps students to improve their communication skills.
6. Equal Participation Opportunities
In traditional classroom settings, there are often students who dominate discussions. As a result, many students do not feel they have the opportunity to participate. Students enrolled in online courses have equal opportunities to participate.
7. Open Learning Geography
Online education is also a great option for students who do not live near a college or university or do not live near a school that offers the course or degree they want. Students taking online courses can also take classes from teachers around the country and the world. As a result, student and instructor options are not limited by geography.
8. Improved Computer Skills
Students taking online courses will improve their computer skills and knowledge because of the online learning format. As these skills and knowledge are so important in the professional world, students can greatly benefit as they look for jobs.
9. Grow Professional Network and Friendship
Often students are permitted to discuss non-class related topics and list personal information about themselves in chat forums. As a result, many students make new friends and get to know their peers better.
10. Teacher Accessibility
Teachers supervising or teaching online courses are also more accessible. Students can ask questions or discuss concerns via email instead of having to wait until a teacher’s office hours, which may not suit students’ schedules.
11. Online Education Materials (Not Bulky Books)
Students enrolled in online courses will also have the advantage of having a variety of educational materials that can be accessed anytime. As a result, students don’t have to carry heavy books around everywhere they go or wait until an item they need is returned to the library.
12. Online Colleges Are Comparable to Traditional Colleges
Three-fourths of American universities and colleges provide students the opportunity to enroll in online courses. Online degrees are increasingly carrying the same weight as traditional degrees. Learn more about the perceptions of attending an online college vs a traditional college.
13. More Convenient Group Meetings
Whenever student projects are assigned in traditional classrooms, it can be difficult coordinating a time and location all members of the group can meet together. However, it can be easier for students participating in online courses to work in groups since they usually discuss their project online in an online discussion forum.
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