How to Prepare for a Virtual Collegiate Experience
With most of today’s every day activities being moved towards the virtual sector; this might be as good a time as any to consider expanding your education with a college degree. Colleges moving towards exclusive online learning opens so much opportunity for potential students who desire the degree but do not have the physical time to dedicate to a classroom. The costs associated with this opportunity though are likely not going to have as much flex, lenders for student loans are taking note of this and making it easier than ever to research and apply for the private loan option that best suits your needs. One specific perk to pay attention to during your search is companies that offer to cover 100% of schools’ certified costs of attendance so that you don’t miss any requirements of your college of choice because of their transition to online learning.
Compare Your Schools’ Requirements to Your Loan Coverage
Eliminating classrooms does not eliminate the needs of the classroom, your payments towards earning your degree still need to cover books, specific tools/needs for certain classes, and any other fees that instructors may apply to their efforts to help you best learn the material from a distance. Make sure that you do not underestimate your needs when it comes to the size of loan you apply for. Consider reaching out to the Client Happiness team associated with your student loan and do not be afraid to ask questions, they are a resource built into the cost of your loan so take full advantage. Sticking with the online theme also prepare to take a little post-graduation pressure off yourself by setting up automatic payments when the time comes, you might be eligible for a 0.25% auto pay discount and that will add up to major savings throughout the duration of your repayment period.
Create Habits for Yourself that Foster Productivity
An exclusively virtual college education is not the style of choice for everybody, but it is a style that everybody needs to be prepared to participate in. Learning what you should and should not surround yourself with during class and study times is imperative for success. Will a podcast or playlist in the background give you motivation to focus, or just distract you? Will having your cell phone close by help you keep track of time and stick to a schedule or just tempt you to get lost in your apps? Pay attention to the outside factors that help you thrive and eliminate the ones that do not, just because you are not sitting in front of the teacher doesn’t mean that lack of dedication to your studies won’t be noticeable in your grades.
Make the Effort to Engage with Online Forums
Losing the personal experience of face to face learning is a genuine concern especially at the collegiate level where almost everyone already has their own outside peer groups, jobs, families, etc. Get involved with the online groups your college organizes so that you can still build a connection to the community around you and get excited about becoming a part of this school’s legacy. Many universities offer groups that are specific to course work as well as ones that are more socially driven, finding common interests and hobbies with other students has never been easier and is certainly less intimidating from behind your computer than it would be in person if you are more of a wallflower than a social butterfly. Get familiar with your schools’ online alumni network as well this can be a useful tool when the time comes to apply for internships and jobs in the future.