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There are so many courses available online, from short 30 min online lessons in kite making to entire professional degrees taken over several years. The variety and quality will range dramatically as with anything else on the world wide web, and as such, it is important to have some idea of the criteria and process involved in deciding which online course you aim to do to improve your career chances or simply to learn a new and exciting skill, and then monetize this. This article provides some of the basics to consider when you are in the market for an inline course.

Decide the level

At what level do you want to study, and in fact, more importantly, at which level will you be able to study. There is no point in registering for a master’s if you haven’t done an undergraduate degree. It sounds simple, but many students make a mistake as they find the perfect course that’s either pitched at the wrong level or is just not compatible with their academic background. Others enroll online and only when in the introductory webinar find that the course is not right for them.

Once you’ve decided the level of study you intend to do, it’s advisable to check and double-check the entry requirements for all courses that you are interested in. Places such as Point Park University Online clearly state exactly what you need as a background to do any of their courses. It is this clarity that you must look for from the outset.

How much time do you have?

Don’t take on a course or degree that you won’t be able to commit to and follow through to completion. It’s one of the most common aspects of online study, and although non-completion has been linked to people choosing the wrong level of study or course, the main reason is lack of commitment. The study’s rationale must be considered, and the appropriate support sought to ensure that whichever course you choose to do online is completed.

Decide on the mix of teaching and learning required

Online learning can be done at your own pace or to a set schedule, depending on whether there are set lectures and seminars in real-time or if these are recorded. Furthermore, there are now possibilities for a genuine campus lifestyle; all be it virtual. There are online courses with increased interaction and then those where you could remain in your home office and only interact with the learning material and lecturer/teachers.

Accreditation recognized qualification.

If it’s for career development and not just for fun, then ensure that the course you choose is accredited and recognized in the sector that you will be entering. This has been a critical factor in the shift to online learning as one of the only ways to determine what is a genuine educational offer. This is mentioned last in this list but should be one of the first things that you do. Once you’ve identified a possible service provider or trainer, ensure that they are accredited and registered.

There are a number of considerations when choosing an online course. Those mentioned herein are some of the most basic considerations, and so you should make sure to read them carefully more than once to help start making a decision.