On any given day, most of us spend a considerable amount of time on a screen—scrolling social media, reading the news, playing games.
So, why not take some of that screentime and make it a lot more productive? That’s where online education can come in.
Online learning can be a key to success for the many employees who are struggling to hold down a job while also expanding their education—an important topic to explore as National Student Employment Week gets underway. Online learning programs come in a variety of formats and focuses—including four-year degrees, skills certifications, workplace training, and more—but they all share several factors:
Traditional education programs involve in-person instruction, meaning the learner has to travel to a classroom setting—which may require significant time and cost. Online education, however, can usually be completed right from the comfort of your own home, saving significant travel time and costs and giving you plenty of extra free time.
Often, when you enroll in an educational program, it can cut into the time you have available to work. But with online education, which can usually be completed on your own time, you’re better able to balance work, learning and life.
Traditional learning is usually rather rigid, but with online learning, students are given much more leeway to complete work according to their own schedules. While this approach may take some getting used to, ultimately it can be a major contributor to the development of time management and organizational skills, and can also help students get in touch with their inner motivation.
A Better Environment
In-person learning, such as with fellow college students or work colleagues, can often come with a wealth of distractions, which are minimized when you’re completing an online program. While virtual learning does mean you need to optimize your space at home (or wherever you’re taking the course from!), you have control over your setting, allowing you to create the best possible atmosphere for learning.
Apart from the specialized skills you can pick up in a training or educational course, online learning can also impart more generalized skills that can help you throughout your career. For instance, an online class can enable students to communicate in ways they might not in a traditional, in-person setting, where the focus is more on the instructor and not the students. Additionally, as anyone who’s used Zoom or Teams to communicate during the pandemic can attest to, online collaboration and learning can emphasize the need for patience and determination to make it through potential technical challenges—but it will also equip you with a wealth of new tech know-how.
These are just a few of the reasons behind Integrity Staffing Solutions’ Next Step U, a free, online education program we offer to all of our associates. Through our partnership with Penn Foster, associates have access to a range of career-focused skills-training courses to help prepare them for their particular trade. We understand that employees often face significant barriers to simultaneously learning and working—from financial considerations to time constraints—so we want to make it as easy as possible for our team members to deepen their education without getting behind at work or breaking the bank. Offered through a mobile app, Next Step U allows workers to learn on the go, on their own time and in their own way—making career education accessible and convenient!