An Adults Guide For Returning To School

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An Adults Guide For Returning To School

(image: jisc.ac.uk)

Thousands of adults return to education every year for a range of reasons. It could be for a career change or a way to develop skills to help in their workplace. Many people go back to school for the social aspects, and others to learn new hobbies. If you are thinking about attaining a new qualification, there are some useful things for you to know. Here are some of them.

Flexible learning

Going back to school no longer means leaving your house and sitting in a formal classroom environment. There are options available to make your life easier. For example, you may prefer to study at home. Online courses, such as accredited school counseling programs, will offer you a virtual classroom environment. You will still receive a professional tutor, but they will communicate with you by email and possibly Skype. They will be there to guide you along the way, mark your assignments and give you feedback.

Finances

If you aren’t currently working, and you don’t have a lot of savings, there are still ways to afford tuition. You are entitled to federal student aid, which is preferable to taking out a bank loan or borrowing from family.

Support

Whether you take an online course or attend a college near you, it is important to rally support from others to help you on your way. When you get to college, there will be many other people making the same changes you are, worrying about fitting in and concerned about the work involved. Buddy up with them, and create a study group where you can support one another. The same applies if you are learning online. Often courses have localized study groups for those doing the same course, so be sure to attend.

Gather resources

Gone are the days when you need to walk around campus with a bag bulging with textbooks. The internet is a valuable source of learning, and many tutors will recommend online lectures and exercises to you. Believe it or not, YouTube is not only about fluffy cat videos. Type in a subject, such as ‘learning fractions’ and you are almost guaranteed somebody will have recorded a video for you to watch.

Time management

There will be many demands on your time, including family matters and work commitments. These will also be a drain on your energy. So be sure to tell family and friends that you need extra time to study in peace. If you need to, work first thing in the morning or last thing at night when the house is quiet.

Don’t be tempted to procrastinate. By doing so, your workload will build up over time. So plan your time well. Map out a chart marking your commitments each day and find time to study in between them.

Care for yourself

You still need time to yourself, so allow yourself a break. If you are struggling with any aspect of the course, always ask for help. It will be stressful embarking on a new course, but you don’t need to burn out because of it.

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