Education is one of the best investments you can make for yourself but if you work full time or have family commitments, juggling work, study and play can be a challenge. Online learning is fast becoming an alternative to the traditional classroom. You have the freedom and flexibility to learn from home without the commute. Although some online learning programmes occasionally require physical attendance to workshops, online learning requires the right tools and mindset. So how can you tell if online study is right for you? Keep the following in mind:
1. Technical Requirements
You don’t need a top of the range computer but online students will need it to attend virtual classes, access learning materials and to complete assessments. To help you get the most out of the programme, it is important that you have a reasonable understanding of computer applications. This may seem basic but having reliable, high speed internet access, and a fully functioning computer will help you get off to a great start. It’s also important to have the computer skills needed to participate in online classes. These include having your own email account and being able to both download and upload a variety of file types i.e graphics, videos and PDFs. If you are not proficient at these types of computer skills you may need to make more preparations before deciding to enrol for an online course. Here is a quick technical checklist of items you might need throughout your course:
- A current computer with sufficient storage for course downloads (our online portal is most compatible with Chrome, Firefox and Safari)
- Reliable internet access
- Adobe Reader
- Microsoft Word
- Flash Player and Java (for videos)
2. Your Learning Style
Some students are suited for the physical classroom while some are more suited to online learning. Because of the flexibility offered, the latter requires discipline and self-motivation. You will need to set aside a regular 10-15 hours per week to learn the content and to submit your assessments. The most successful online students can stay on task and avoid tempting distractions such as Facebook and other social media.
3. Your Organisational Skills
Whether you’re studying online or on campus, organisational skills are critical to ensure you get your work done within the time frames required. Without the structure of a physical classroom, you will need to keep your learning materials and assessments organised to ensure nothing falls through the cracks. Our Ella Baché Trainers are a forum post, phone call or email away but you will be responsible for knowing when things are due and when the tutorials and virtual classes are held to ensure you get the very best experience possible.
4. Your Communication Preference
Some people prefer face time whilst others prefer emails. When you study with Ella Baché online, you study with a group of your peers with the ongoing support of your dedicated trainers. Each cohort of students has a dedicated trainer that you will get to know. This is the trainer that posts in the forums, runs the virtual classrooms, emails and regularly phones you and your classmates. Most of the communication and interaction you will have with other students and your trainers will be online through emails, engaging in online discussion forums and participating in virtual classrooms so you will need to feel comfortable communicating in this way.
5. Your Graduation Goals
Due to the flexible nature of online courses, your studies may extend over a longer period of time. If you were to study online, you would graduate with a Diploma of Beauty Therapy in 2 years versus 1 year if you were to study on campus.
With the right technology and discipline, online learning can offer a rewarding learning experience. The beauty industry continues to grow, meaning more opportunities for you when you complete the programme.
Whether you choose to study online or on campus is dependent on your personal situation and current commitments. If you are still unsure if online learning is right for you contact our Course and Careers advisor on 1300 856 166 to discuss all of your study options.
If you are ready to join a group of fellow online students to study your Diploma of Beauty Therapy, enrol now or request more info.