How Effective Is Online Learning For Graduate School

What do you know about online learning for graduate school? After finishing my masters in psychology, I felt I was done with school.

With 2017 attracting record student enrollment, traditional schoolhouses are feeling pressure to adapt to serve the needs of the times by transforming their operations. Since the early 2000s, colleges and universities have undergone major construction, construction and expansion projects. Consequently, the 10-year total cost was an estimated $28 billion, and 2018 enrolled upward of 22 million students.

One of the most apparent changes on the university campus is the rapid expansion of online and blended courses, greatly benefiting both students and the university. That’s when it comes to graduate school, online learning options have greatly helped to enhance a prospective student’s experience from start to finish, as well as increasing completion.

How Effective Is Online Learning For Graduate School?

To get a clear idea of how effective online learning is, we interviewed two of the top faculty members to answer one simple question: What is online learning like for undergraduate and graduate students at San Diego State University (SDSU)?

The respondents have plenty of experience; Loni Akinlabi is a professor of business and marketing, and Hye Won Kim is a professor of journalism. Regarding the automated courses, they indicated students can study at their own pace, making their concentration complete. In terms of incorporating virtual classrooms, the professors are well-versed in it because they have conducted research on how to improve video-based learning opportunities.

Akinlabi explains it’s easy to conduct courses because it takes no practical experience to become a professor. Moreover, no graduate students have to start from scratch because the test prep are already established, allowing their classmates to form into a cohesive class. Regarding attendance, she says it depends on the personality of the student. As for preparing for assignments, she encourages them to go on Google Scholar, Wikipedia and sources to look up the techniques, practicing them before they begin the assignments. These questions can even be solved while they are taking the online courses.

About Specialized Video-Based Online Courses

Akinlabi adds that SDSU offers specialized online video-based classes, such as MBA in Value Chain Management, Engineering Management and Business Administration, and Group Dynamics: Effective Team Composition.

“[They are] designed to teach one-to-one team dynamic and to address complex, critical business issues,” she says. “Online format allows experts and students to discover how to solve business problems using innovative approaches.”

The informative videos are annotated to add more context so students can understand more, she adds. SDSU also creates mentorship programs to support students.

On the other hand, Kim explains the hybrid courses are open only to higher-division students. While they are better coordinated to cater to the specific needs of students, both faculty members think the online learning format would be more useful for online master’s courses and doctoral dissertations.

“Having a campus visit allows some interaction with professors and peers that such as increase student satisfaction,” Kim says. “However, having just one course with just one professor is ideal for a group interaction.”

About Master’s Degrees

On the whole, the tuition is less costly than a traditional undergraduate or graduate school. SDSU is also a public university, and its undergraduate fee amounts to $6,000 per semester. Comparatively, the Cost of Online/Hybrid Programs in Professional and Teacher Education for Master’s degrees at another public university in the region are $12,000 and $14,000.

The regional quality of the San Diego university’s online courses is the reason why the two professors chose it over other institutions. Both Akinlabi and Kim agree online courses are useful for graduate school. As for how effective it is, you won’t have to wait long to find out. “It’s fantastic!” says Akinlabi. “The students really enjoy the program, especially the ones who want to get their bachelor’s degree. The course structure is easy to follow, the professors are very knowledgeable and knowledgeable about business, and online courses are inexpensive!”

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