Direct distance education programs are very popular at this time, with millions of students taking internet based courses in the U.S. and around the world.
These courses provide a means for people who might not otherwise be able to attend traditional schools to further their education online. However, as in a traditional college course, there are a few things a person should do before enrolling in an e-learning program. First, a student must have a goal in mind. He must decide exactly what he wants to achieve - such as getting a Bachelor degree or professional certification for example. Once he has settled on that, the next step is to decide how far he wants to go with his education from there - perhaps go on to earn a Master's or other advanced degree.
Fortunately, with so many e-learning programs available to students these days, virtually any degree program offered in a regular campus-based school is also available online. The online student can earn anything from a high school diploma to a doctorate or some other advanced degree if he is interested in going that far with his education. Next, the student may need to take entrance or placement exams to assess current knowledge and academic level. It is important to properly assess a student's educational level to determine if he has the essential skills such as language or math to perform well in school. A student lacking the expected minimal requirements may first need to take some remedial courses to be brought up to an acceptable level.
A student who has been out of school for a while may wish to take some refresher courses to help get back on track academically. Additionally, to get into college level courses a student will need to show proof of a high school diploma, GED or equivalent. Any college-level program that does not require a high school diploma or equivalent should be avoided, as all legitimately accredited schools require this. On the other hand, there are numerous online and campus-based schools that operate as "diploma mills" of sorts, interested more in getting the student's money than in providing any kind of quality education. A student should only consider schools that are accredited by an agency recognized by the U.
S. Department of Education. Finally, it's important for the student to remember that the he is not alone. Getting prepared to go back to school requires some work, and can be a rather daunting task - especially for students who have been out of school for awhile. Most schools provide well-qualified counselors and other staff to help guide the student through every step of the process, and can provide additional resources that may be needed to bring the student up to college-ready status.
Jesse Whitehead earned his B.S. in Business Administration with honors from an online university in 2005. For more information about direct distance education click here