Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Alternative Routes Into Higher Education.

(Akiit.comThere are more ways to study a degree than ever before. This flexibility has made it possible for more people to take advantage of higher education. Whether you need to study around commitments or don’t want to end up with student debts, there is certain to be an option for you. Here are just several alternative ways to study a degree to consider.

Study abroad

You don’t have to study a degree in your home country. In fact, more people are studying abroad due to its numerous benefits.

Studying abroad can firstly be cheaper. Whilst you do need to consider travel costs and the cost of living abroad, tuition fees could be much cheaper, making it more affordable overall. Some countries such as Germany even offer free education, which extends to foreign students.

It’s also a chance to gain life experience and travel a new part of the world whilst studying. If you’ve been torn between travelling and taking a degree, this option could allow you to do both. As well as being great personal experience, studying abroad could also be great experience to make you stand out on a CV.

English tends to be the universal language of colleges around the world. For this reason, you shouldn’t worry about having to learn the local language. That said, if you are looking to study a foreign language at university, studying abroad in a country that speaks that language could be very beneficial, helping you to immerse yourself in that language and develop fluency faster.

Every country has a different application process including different deadlines for applying, so you’ll need to look this up beforehand. This site Dream Studies Abroad offers more information on how to apply. For an even deeper look into higher education while abroad, use Google search engine, and search for David Parrott articles. Having served in a range of higher education roles and continuing to serve as a consultant and distinguished speaker for higher education institutions he has extensive expertise in this area.

Study from home

Distance-learning (aka studying from home) is becoming a more popular option. Rather than having to study at a campus and attend scheduled seminars and lectures, you can study from home in your own time. You still generally have three years to complete these courses and must still complete assignments by specific dates, however otherwise it’s up to you as to when you study.  

The flexibility of working from home and being able to choose your own hours makes this a great option for those with home commitments such as children. It can even be a means of studying around a full-time job. Of course, this does take a lot of self-discipline – if you’re easily distracted, you may find it difficult to study from home, although you may be able to hire tutors to help spur you on.

Studying from home can also be cheaper. There are even some free courses out there specifically for distance learning students. This can be another perk for those that want less debts after completing their course.

Sites like HotCourses list a lot of these distance-learning study options. It’s worth doing your research thoroughly beforehand to find the best course for you.

Study and work

There are also ways in which you can study and gain work experience in a related field. These study options are great for people who have their sights on a specific career and need a degree and experience to get into these career fields.

Internships are one option. This guide at USC gives information on one such internship that offers a degree as well as work experience. This may involve studying alongside a job or studying and then having a job that leads straight on afterwards.

There are also sandwich courses to consider which involve a year of work experience in the middle of a three year course. Universities may be able to provide this sandwich placement or you may be required to secure it yourself. Sandwich courses have become popular in finance and law, but you can find pretty such courses in pretty much any subject.

Take an accelerated course

Three years can be a long time to study – some people may feel that they want to speed up this process. Accelerated courses enable this option, allowing you to complete a three year course in two years.

Such courses have the same amount of content but are studied in a more intensive period. This usually involves studying throughout the summer and spring when most courses enjoy a couple weeks of break. As a result, you need to be keen and certain that you can take on the faster pace of these courses.

This article at Best Degree Programs outlines the pros and cons of these courses. Such courses often involve the same application process as regular degrees.

Take an employer sponsored course

There are employer sponsored courses out there in which the employer of a company pays for your studies in return that you then work for their company once you’ve graduated. Such schemes are few and far between and tend to be very competitive – you may have to undergo multiple interviews to be in for a chance of such as scheme. However, if you are successful, it could be a great opportunity to study for free, whilst also having a secure job at the end of it.

Sponsored courses tend to be offered by large companies that have the money to spend on such programmes. You’ll usually be given an entry role when you graduate from which you can progress. This is all on the condition that you complete and pass the course that is being paid for by the employer.

This site Prospects offer more information on employer sponsored courses.

Staff Writer; Phil Adams

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