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Education Specialist, works as educational counselors addressing a variety of student challenges.

Tuesday, 30 December 2014

Is An MBA Needed For Creating A Rewarding Finance Career?

Do you want to pursue a career in finance? Are you thinking about getting an MBA? Will an MBA degree boost your employability and offer you excellent career opportunities in the financial services sector? Let’s have a look...

MBA For A Finance Career

An MBA in finance will provide you some great opportunities to start your finance career. You can work in multinational corporations as a financial analyst, financial advisor or an accountant. To help aspirants achieve their career goals, globally reputed B-schools like London Business School, Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and Harvard Business School are currently inviting applications for the MBA programmes they offer. But can an MBA degree actually help you in building your finance career? Or is it just a waste of your money?

Most people believe that simply by getting an MBA you will be able to amp up your career. However, the fact is the progress of your career basically depends on your skills, abilities, knowledge and experience. However, an MBA qualification can definitely open up new doors to better opportunities. It depends on you how you make the most of these opportunities and use your skills in the workplace.

Is An MBA Enough?

Your MBA education will prepare you to start your finance career with confidence and knowledge so that you can add value to your company. To make the most of your MBA degree you will need to possess intelligence, specific skill sets, experience and money or the capacity to take student loans. Moreover, you also need to make the right connections with the right people so that you can work in the best positions in financial services.

According to the efinancialcareers CV database, it has been observed that if you wish to make your career in trading, then there isn’t any sense in pursuing an expensive MBA programme. Apparently, merely 7 per cent of trading professionals who have posted their resume on efinancialcareers database in the last one year posses an MBA degree.

Why You Need An MBA

An MBA can significantly help your career if you are planning to build your career in the investment banking division or IBD as more than 15 per cent professionals in this field have an MBA qualification. In the United States, MBAs are particularly widespread in this sector with almost 19 per cent IBD professionals with MBA degrees, as compared to 13 per cent in Europe.

Furthermore, if you plan on working in private equity in the future, then spending huge loads of money on your MBA can be worthwhile. The private equity sector comprises of the highest volume of MBA qualified professionals in financial services, with American private equity firms with the most MBA graduates. However, it was found that MBA graduates comprise of only 19 per cent and 22 per cent of the total PE populations respectively.

So if you are planning on building a rewarding career in the financial services sector, then you should consider the fact that most of the professionals in the financial services sector are not MBA qualified.

Monday, 29 December 2014

How Online Education Can Help Your School Provide Better Learning Opportunities?

In the last few years online education has become an integral part of the learning experience as more and more students from around the world are now pursuing online programmes. However, there is still some scepticism remaining among a segment of education experts and institutions. Some educators believe that online learning provides valuable education and significant teacher-student interaction. On the other hand, some teachers think that online education is inferior to traditional classroom learning and contest associations with external for-profit providers.

Implementing Online Learning

For instance, most of the faculty at the School of International Service at American University were apprehensive about collaborating with an external provider to deliver online graduate education. Most of the teachers wondered how learners could benefit by not attending face-to-face interaction with professors. However, as the online programmes were implemented, the educators discovered that digital learning has its own set of benefits and could actually help students learn better.

But a huge investment of innovation and resources is required to achieve success and to make sure that institutes meet their objectives. This is important as administrators and faculty are committed to teach those learners who are unable attend on-campus classes for different reasons like location problems, family or professional responsibilities etc.

TheSchool of International Service introduced an online master's degree course in International Relations (MAIR) in May 2013. Now over 100 students have already taken part in real-time online classes from more than 13 nations and 26 states. Around 33 per cent of the students are either retired or active duty retired U.S. military. The school manages the admissions, offers curriculum and course content and organises with the university to determine different policies regarding the online programme.

Offering The Right Platform

The educators and faculty take around 7 to 9 months to prepare for the online course, which includes developing study materials so that the learners can study at their own pace by watching videos, lectures, simulations and presentations.

The institute has also collaborated with 2U, which offers online platforms and allows educators to provide live and pre-prepared coursework. Both students and teachers have said the online programmes offer high levels of satisfaction. A recent survey in the school found that around 94 per cent students claimed that the online master's programme is highly recommendable and they would surely suggest it to a friend.

Merging On-Campus And Online Learning

The school eventually invited online learners to the campus for an immersion programme in September. For the first time, students met with their fellow learners in person, whom they have met via their online programmes. The students also interacted with the faculty face-to-face and participated in academic and career advising sessions.

Although there are many challenges in developing and delivering an effective online master's degree programme, but with the right technological platform and trained professors and faculty, any institution can achieve its goals.

Sunday, 14 December 2014

How Top Up Degrees Can Help You Paying Off Your Student Debt

With rising tuitions in most colleges across the globe, many students are now wondering whether to pursue a college degree. Moreover, numerous students are taking heavy loans to pay for their degrees and are ending up with crippling student debts. I believe it is of utmost importance that you pursue the right major that will enable you to pay off your debts the fastest.
Here I am going to talk about which majors you should pursue and how you can earn degree by avoiding debts. Keep reading….

Woes Of Student Debts

The truth is student debt can not only affect you earning, but it can also leave a lasting impact on your savings, career and overall life. Studies have found that various college graduates end up paying their student loans till their retirement. So it does not matter if you are a fresh graduate and if you have your entire career to pay your debts, unless you choose the right majors and take the necessary steps, your lifestyle, homeownership and retirement will get significantly affected by debt. You surely don’t want to retire with almost zero savings.

How Majors Impact Earnings

Hence it is imperative that you graduate with a degree which helps you in paying back your loans within a stipulated period. A new study by the Brookings Institution's Hamilton Project found out a unique pattern related to different degrees and earnings of graduates. The research found that graduates with college degrees in lowest-income specialties experience fastest growth in their earnings after school. It was also observed that graduates with degrees in the highest- income majors saw comparatively slower growth as they started their careers with a high salary.

The analysis found that lower-income majors, such as sports and sports, have the maximum percentage increase in income growth within the first 5 years of starting their careers. On the other hand, majors that are traditionally considered high-earning, like engineering, experience a much slower increase. Why is this important? Irrespective of what a graduate earns after 20 years in their careers, student debts are generally paid off within the first 10 years after college, even for the minimum income groups.

Thus, I believe that you should pursue a degree which allows you to complete your graduation in your desired field with no or the least amount of debt. The fact is the more you earn, the more your save and the sooner you will pay off your student debts.

So How Can You Earn A Debt-Free Degree?

If you want to pursue a qualification that enables you to avoid debt, then I would suggest you study a top up degree online. The truth is numerous students are now going for online degrees as it enables them to acquire an accredited qualification without emptying their banks.

Online top up programmes are especially designed to enable level 5 graduates to pursue higher education qualifications. By pursuing an online BA top up or BSc top up, you will not only be able to avoid crippling debts, but you can also earn your degree much quicker. These programmes help you to fast track your current qualification to a recognised degree. Hence you can easily jump to an advanced degree programme from your undergraduate diploma. Moreover, studying top up programmes demonstrates that you are proactive and have the necessary management and academic skills which is always preferred by employers.

One of the best things about completing your online top up degree is that it allows you to study whatever major you want without worrying about how much you will earn from it. As you don’t need to worry about paying student loans, you can confidently choose your dream career.

Do you want to avoid student debt? Wish to pursue your preferred majors? Planning to study top up programmes? Share your thoughts and opinions with us. Feel free to comment below. We would love to hear from you.

Monday, 24 November 2014

Endeavour To Make Higher Education Survive in the 21st Century

Students look for many things before choosing a university. They study about the environment in which they are supposed to learn, try to analyze whether the school is accredited and recognized internationally and they try to find out if the institution has a global rank. Not only should the institution attract the attention of students belonging to that country but it should also win the favour of students from various other countries as well.

Apart From Rank What Else Is Looked Into In A University?

The most important factor is the quality of education that is to be given to the students. For that to happen, we need qualified professors. They need proper training and wisdom as well. It is this that wins the attention of students who want to get a degree in higher education. Also, students want to be employed right after graduating so there should be some provision for interviews in the campus. The higher the ranks, the greater will be the employability of students.

The students too, need to be the best. They need to be well qualified and should have the right aptitude and attitude towards learning. The curriculum should be designed appropriately since the prosperity of the world depends on the decisions that are made by the students who work later on in various posts after they graduate.

Recent Trends

In recent times, great importance has been given to business education since a business graduate earns well after leaving school apart from doctors who graduate from medical school or engineers who graduate from technology based schools. Business plays a very important part in the lives of students and society in general.

Areas That Are in the Spotlight

The areas that are being emphasized in business studies are innovation, entrepreneurship, business and society and personal development. This stands true for any business school. There are many ways in which such subjects are being offered to the students.

MOOCs Revealed

Presently, many Irish universities have started providing Massive Open Online Courses which can be availed by anyone who is interested. These courses are available for free. There are some problems with this option.

Many students are beginning the course but are not completing it. Maybe at some level, universities are charging a nominal fee. Some students might not feel self-motivated or might lack the discipline that is required to handle a course in which learning is to be done online.

Reading, completing the assignments and appearing for the assessments are all the steps that are necessary in such a mode of learning. Studies have been conducted and alternatives have also been discovered to suit the specific needs of the students.

The Evolution of SNOCs

To counteract these problems, Select Network Open Courses have recently been introduced, in which professors and experts from various business schools interact and share their views online. A student gets the opportunity to meet any teacher from any university in any part of the world.

This is a blended course in which some classes are being conducted in the university and students are interacting with people from various other places and institutions. In the process the students are learning to build strong relationships and are working together for a common positive goal. This cannot be achieved in a purely online form of learning.

What Lies In The Future Of The Irish Populace

It is a good thing that Irish Business Schools are taking steps to make sure that their universities are updated and informed about the latest trends in education and the global job market as well as the demands that need to be met so that students can be recruited after they get their degree. Ireland’s steps towards perfection are slow but in future the nation will be successful in this mission.

Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Becoming Academically Competent For Future Employment

In recent times business schools are focussing on training the workers based on the research that they usually do when they interact with other schools. If people have already been hired by companies, then they are dealt with a little differently. Institutions are making sure that competency based programs are available to students so that they can receive degrees and certifications.

One of the greatest challenges that students are facing today are the rising and hefty prices of tuition fees when they enrol themselves in an academic course. The reason why students try to gain access to these courses is so that they can get excellent employment opportunities and salaries that are reasonably good. Keeping this thought in mind, various organizations are collaborating with educational institutions and are spreading the awareness of these needs to business experts across the globe. Emphasis is being laid on training students to have business skills when they finally get employed.

Alarming claims have been made by many students in recent times. Several companies are not content with the skills that are being taught at the graduation level. In their opinion they are laying more emphasis on students’ higher education or in other words, a post -graduation in any field of interest.

When students learn a course that aims at looking into their competency in that job, it is a starter that initiates the progress of a student. It is a flexible mode of learning in which students learn at their own pace. The degree will help them in future.

“This is workforce development at the higher education level,” was Nick Lacy’s statement. The director of competency-based learning and national relations at Brandman University took a deep look at the requirements of various companies and pointed out what steps educational institutions needed to make.

The industries that support a collaborative competency learning program are finance, technology, food service, health care and many others. Being good theoretically in a classroom is insufficient in such areas of work. One’s practical knowledge and first- hand experience is also taken into account.

Students are finding these courses to be informative, practically useful and there are many students who are approaching universities every year to get such a degree. The students who are unable to go to a college or university are also looking for other options that are widely available in the technologically advanced world. They are doing their best to check for the latest details online and it is a fact that there are similar courses available online.

It is a boon for those students who are already employed and are raising their own family which leaves little time to spare for their own academic pursuit.The opportunities for growth in one’s career are increasing. It is a student’s task to take the best chance and move forward in life.

Monday, 27 October 2014

One two three towards an MBA!

Everyone is very optimistic the moment the word MBA rings loud and clear. This course is a stepping stone towards success. Not only will it ensure that you get the best jobs in the market, but it will also guarantee you a very high salary. It is so easy to study this course in the age of technology. Here’s what you need to know.
If you have a background in business and you are trained in specific areas you are one step ahead.
Expert Opinions

Latha Ramchand, the dean of the C. T. Bauer College of Business at the University of Houston stated that "An MBA program allows students to expand their networks, as they learn alongside other working professionals in classes taught by faculty with strong connections in the business community. You learn how to work within a team, either as a leader or a team member and are exposed to diverse viewpoints and ideas that help you to improve problem solving skills and your collaborative style."
Some of the best ways to do an MBA?
You immediately need to complete your undergraduate course in business. A candidate’s experience at work is also crucial. A minimum of two years of work experience is desirable. You must appear for the Graduate Management Admission Test. Applications are evaluated on the basis of your performance in this examination.
You must also submit the admission fee and provide the score that you secured in your GMAT examination. Your application will stand out if you can provide letters of recommendation, resume, interview and possibly a personal essay clarifying your purpose and reasons for your interest in the specific course.
If you are not interested to wage into the long preparation of the exam there is another way that can fast track your MBA Degree. Diploma in Business management is the key to complete your MBA in the shortest possible way. It is a level 7 programme that enables you to acquire the necessary credits that take you straight to the final year of your MBA. Thus you do not have to worry about any entrance exam scores.
In fact with numerous universities and colleges giving you the opportunity to study the course online you can actually balance your study with your work.
Diploma in Business management online is one the best ways to gain the valuable work experience that helps you score brownie points when you move up the career ladder.
What is the duration of this course?

On an average an MBA is completed in almost two years. It may vary depending on the duration of the course’s programs, classes and the estimated time that is required by that specific school. You may have to attend classes on a part-time or on a full time basis.
However, when you are studying online the duration becomes a bit more flexible depending on the school or college you are enrolling.
What added benefits will you get when you apply for this course and start learning?

The added benefits include creating a strong network with fellow students and a good relation with supportive teachers who constantly guide and encourage the students. This has a positive impact on the career of the students.

There are ample choices from which you can choose your area of specialization and there are skills that you can acquire. All you need to do is fill in the application and start learning. So what are you waiting for?  

Friday, 24 October 2014

How An Apprenticeship Degree Can Fetch You In-Demand Employment

Students are flocking towards colleges and higher education with one aim in mind- to get employment. They are also looking for courses that will help them secure work experience along with the development of certain work-centric skills. There are jobs that are highly demanded and are known as middle skill jobs.
What Are Middle-Skill Jobs?

It is a job that requires education and training beyond high school, but not a complete four-year bachelor's degree. The basic salary for these jobs is about $30,000 to $80,000, which excludes overtime.
The jobs that fall under this category are jobs that are available in the IT sector, medical service coders, welding, nursing, carpentry, plant technician and HVAC work.
These jobs may be listed under the category of traditional blue-collar fields. In recent times it has been observed that these workers earn greater salaries than their white-collar peers in office cubicles. When an advertisement for a job is available in the newspaper, it is mentioned that a bachelor's degree is desirable, but in truth what employers are seeking is a degree "or equivalent experience." It has been predicted that they will grow at a faster pace the rest of the decade.
Lisa Katz, executive director of the Workforce Intelligence Network stated that vocational programs should not be an alternative track for the non-college bound. They should be a track for everybody.
How Does This Job Actually Work?

Students experience a combination of classroom work with on-the-job training. The employer, who interviewed and hired them, pays for its apprentice's tuition and hourly wage. They receive free training and receive an advanced associate's degree at the end of three years. They work for the employer who sponsored them for at least two years.
What Are The Prospects In Recent Times?

It has been observed that employers offer intensive courses in computer programming and information technology skills for minority women in selected U.S. cities.
Another inference by the coalition projects is that entry-level jobs requiring middle skills will grow 3.8% in southeast Michigan by 2019. That is faster than similar jobs that would require a bachelor's degree or more education (1.4% growth).
There will be a higher demand for middle-skill workers, particularly those in the IT field, health care sector and the skilled trades.
There will be a 5.8% growth in jobs requiring some post-HS training or associate's degree, but don't pay $15 or more.
There will be a 1.2% decrease in the acceptance of a High school diploma or less.
What Is The Opinion Of Students?

One such student, named Brian Huber, found admission to the MichiganAdvanced Technician Training program to be had undergone the entire process of being hired, trained and he signed a contract with his company for two years. Huber found the job of an auto parts maker to be promising. He appreciated the fact that after the course was over he had the security of a job.
So you can see how important these middle jobs are. It is also lucrative for those who are currently employed to try and complete their higher education online since you can work and study simultaneously and gather the experience that is needed for your job.
Save Time-Learn Online

Online learning is a smart option since you can complete your education after work by completing the assignments at home. There is no need to go to a classroom. You might have the constraint of finances and maybe your university is located far away so it is impossible to work and study.
You can choose the online course and your evaluation will be provided online. After that you will only witness progress and self-fulfilment.  

Monday, 13 October 2014

How are Business CoursesTransforming The Lives Of M.Ds ?

You are a successful doctor. You are delighted by your profession as a healer and you have helped millions of people by treating them and by prescribing the best medicines. Yet you feel that the infrastructure of your medical unit or hospital or wherever you are employed needs special attention.
Areas such as primary care need special attention. One needs to understand the business of healthcare, from team management to budgeting and accounting.
Having a Diploma can help you earn more money. It can help you stay employed. It is an indication to your employer that you're willing to do extra work to succeed.
Why are business courses essential even if you have an M.D?

Maria Chandler, the president of the Association of M.D./M.B.A. Programs and herself a recipient of both degrees, mentioned that the degree combination “fast tracks” graduates who aspire to reach the zenith of their career. The current nominee for surgeon general, Vivek Murthy, who is thirty six year old, holds both degrees, has successfully established multiple organizations.
Those with dual degrees have a particular edge when it comes to hospital administration, a field that has traditionally employed M.B.A.s as leaders and M.D.s as middle managers.
According to a New York Times analysis in May, the average annual salary for a hospital administrator is $237,000, compared with an average of $185,000 for a clinical physician. A 2011 study found that hospitals with physician CEOs outperformed those with non-medical leadership.
Vinod Nambudiri, a fifth-year internal medicine and dermatology resident at BWH and a graduate of Harvard’s joint M.D./M.B.A. program stated that “Just like you wouldn’t want a school superintendent to never have taught, you don’t want the person leading your hospital to never have taken care of a patient.”
The number of joint M.D./M.B.A. programs in America has grown from six to 65 in 20 years. (From 2011 and 2012 alone, the number increased by 25 percent.) More than half of M.D./M.B.A. programs started after the year 2000, and most offer a cost-effective course of a five-years duration.
The M.D./M.B.A. may also be attracting more high-performing students to the specialty of primary care. Business-minded types often search for problems that need solving, and primary care gives them plenty of opportunity for that.
Gellis started the grassroots network Primary Care Progress. In primary care, doctors may be able to work a combination of clinical hours and entrepreneurial work hours.
The benefits run both ways: Chandler says that earning an M.D. may help make business-minded people more careful and compassionate. Businesses who hire M.D./M.B.A.s tell her that these graduates are “ethical businessmen” who use the medical creed to influence their actions in the business world.
Fast Track your Business Degree

Getting yourself enrolled in business diploma courses is one very flexible way of fulfilling your desire of getting a BA/MBA Degree. It gives the student an opportunity to save time and money and move straight to their final year of their Bachelors or Masters in Business. Plus opting for them through online study is enormously beneficial for professionals in the medical profession since time is a big concern for them.
An online diploma programme provides them the necessary flexibility and independence that allows them to juggle their professional responsibilities or their MD degree along with their online study.
the mode of study is quite easy, all course material, lectures, discussions, explanations and references will be provided online.
You will find completing both your M.D and your business course to be less cumbersome. These courses that are approved by renowned awarding bodies are the single best option for study. This is because then finding employment in any medical unit will not be a great challenge.
The Diploma in Business Studies aims to provide students with the ability to develop lines of argument and make sound judgments in accordance with basic theories and concepts of the subject area and the ability to communicate these accurately to a range of peers.
A range of personal and professional skills that can be used in a wide range of situations and contexts is acquired by an aspiring student. Support and guidance to develop as independent learners is achieved and you acquire a range of transferrable skills.
You will discover how challenging it is to be an administrator of any hospital. It will give you a clearer perspective of the lives of human beings.

If you have any comments for us, don’t hesitate to send us a feedback.

Saturday, 11 October 2014

How Children are Learning Thanks To Technological Discoveries

You must have seen how classrooms are rapidly changing and how they are transforming into a technology based environment that is sparking the interest of young learners. It is interesting how the burden of carrying textbooks to class and having to scribble every last word pronounced by a teacher is slowly being replaced by easier methods.
Business schools are also on the lookout of such technological advancements and developments. So how is technology being integrated in an academic or vocational course?
Tech for the Taught

We are introducing young learners to the world of laptops, gadgets and other such devices. They can be useful to students in the following manner:
Nearly a third of students say they like to use their laptops for work in class and almost 40% of college aged students agree with that thought.
Only 20% of students in school use their mobile device and college students use them even less at 15%.
For use outside the classroom, both student types prefer their laptops for homework over their mobile devices.
How is technology useful to teachers?

Interactive whiteboards or Smart Boards and projectors are generally preferred and are frequently used in the classroom by teachers. It is favoured in colleges (48%) rather than in high schools (36%). This is a recent survey that was conducted to determine how popular they were and how widely accepted they were in society.
The most popular software, Microsoft Office is used the most by both educators and students. College students use the program more at 84%.
Rezzly, (formerly Gogo Labs), is a company that provides assistance to teachers in order to turn their lesson plans into quest-based games for their students. Rezzly’s cofounder, Lisa Dawley, is a former teacher, university administrator and gaming enthusiast.
Lisa, being a visionary could understand how important it was to introduce this student and teacher friendly opportunity for them to grow. Research has shown how important it is in the lives of students to learn while not assuming that the teaching learning process is a burden.
She is a genius to have understood the psychology of the young and bright minds that are going to develop new ideas for a better future.
Is this allowing students to be honest at all times? Especially before exams?

According to thestudents surveyed, far more (72%) say they’re more likely to be distracted by use of tech outside of the classroom than in it (46%).
Cheating isn’t such a big deal apparently either. 29% believe that cheating has moderately increased because of tech devices with only 10% saying it’s increased significantly.
So you can see how technology has changed the face of education and there is a constant trend of improvement and discovering new possibilities for aspiring youngsters.

What is your opinion about technology integrated education? Let us know by leaving a comment below.

Tuesday, 7 October 2014

Why learning English online is the new trend?

Are you studying online yet? If not, it is about time you start pursuing your degree online and achieve your career goals without investing excessive time or money. 

With the advancement of technology, online learning has become one of the most popular modes of earning an accredited qualification for many students and professionals across the globe. Why? Simply because it allows you to advance your education without making any drastic changes to your personal and professional life. As online courses offer a lot of convenience and flexibility, its demand has been increasing quickly worldwide.

Learning English The Online Way

Recently, over 100,000 individuals have enrolled for a single web-based course that offers English language tuition to the students. The introductory programme from the British Council, is their first attempt at MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses) which provides lessons free of charge. Among the people who have already signed up for the 6 week course, students from Russia, Burma and Spain are highest in numbers.

According to the British Council, this online course is among the largest English language classes worldwide. More than 33 per cent of these English language students are pursuing the education programme through their smartphones.

Tapping Into The Global Demand

Sara Pierson, head of English partnerships at the British Council, claims that the web-based programme has “tapped into the global demand.” She said “English is spoken at a useful level by one in four people worldwide - and we know that even more people all over the world want to learn English.”

MOOCs were initially adopted by some of the leading universities in the world which offered numerous programmes online to students anywhere in the world. In fact some of the online university courses have acquired excessively high students’ base, with some institutes having over 200,000 students.

A Global Virtual Classroom

However, several educational establishments have also started to develop online courses for students. In fact, the British Council has partnered with prominent UK-based online education provider, FutureLearn, to create and deliver the English course.

Kathryn Skelton of FutureLearn commented “Learners are taking the course from countries like Burma and Algeria, where internet penetration is relatively low, yet the appetite for learning English is clearly thriving.”

The online language course has already attracted learners from 178 nations, with Spain being the highest contributor of students. The United Kingdom is also in the top 10 list. Moreover, there are large groups of students from India, Vietnam, China and Colombia as well. A study of the programme, which utilises online tutors and video to deliver course content, reveals that male students are outnumbered by female students by less than one to two. It is probably the first time they are pursuing an online programme for nearly three quarters. It was also found that the biggest group of students were educators.

You will not be required to pay any tuition fee for pursuing the course neither there will be any examination at the end. Instead you will receive a “statement of participation.”

Are You Going To Enrol For The Programme? 

So what do you think about the new online English course from the British Council? Do you think this course can help you in honing your English skills? Let us know what you feel by sharing your views and opinions in the comments section below.

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

Is Skipping College For Your Start-Up A Good Idea?

Do you dream of becoming an entrepreneur? Are planning to start a business? Can a college degree help in your start-up? Or should you skip college and start your business right away? Let’s find out....

Is College Worth It?

Several college graduates are now becoming entrepreneurs and most of them are wondering whether college was worth it. Although there are some graduates who believe the skills and knowledge they gained from college make them better entrepreneurs, there are many others who think college was a waste of time and money and they should have dropped out and started their business sooner. 

Should You Skip College?

According to a 2013 study by Hiscox, a small business insurer, almost 50 per cent of small business owners in US claim that the national education system fails to identify and inspire individual dreams and ideas, 2 crucial elements in entrepreneurship. Moreover skipping college for starting a business becomes more appealing when you consider that entrepreneurs like Steve Jobs and Bill Gates did not earn any formal college degree.

However for every successful entrepreneur without a formal education, there is one college dropout who wishes he completed college before starting business. The fact is there are several factors that you must consider before you take such an important step. 

Don’t Miss Out On Opportunities

However, when you have a great idea, then it simply does not make sense to spend 4 years in college and miss out on excellent opportunities. So if you wish to start your business as soon as possible and yet earn a higher education qualification, then the best option for you is going online. Online programmes are designed in such a way that enables you to work full time and yet acquire essential skills without investing excessive time and money. 

Pursuing an online diploma in business can help you to gain necessary business skills and knowledge that will enable you to lead your start-up towards success. Moreover as you will be able to work while you study, you can gain relevant and real-world work experience to have a better understanding of the business and the sector you are in.

Get Some Real-World Experience

Skyler Slade, co-founder of automated customer research app Coefficient, believes work experience is crucial to being a better entrepreneur. Initially he worked with Grooveshark, a music-streaming website, to gather experience and knowledge about how to run a business. He says, “Working at someone else's startup for five years prepared me to start my own company more than any college degree could have. It's one thing to take classes on entrepreneurship, and to read about management, but it's another thing entirely to actually be in the thick of it, to be thrown in headfirst and have to sink or swim.”

Slade believes that you need to gain some experience with a startup or an established company before thinking about skipping college and starting your own business. However, it is also important for you to have a college degree if you wish to get a job.

Can College Degree Guarantee A Job?

A new study by Burning Glass Technologies, a labour analytics firm, reveals that most employers worldwide are now treating a college degree as basic eligibility criteria for their screening process to hire better employees. Matt Sigelman, CEO of Burning Glass Technologies, said “For an individual employer, that may be an understandable step. When everybody does it, however, this becomes a trend that could shut millions of Americans out of middle-skill, middle-class jobs.”

The trend has been rather significant in fields where college degree was not traditionally required for employment. In fact, many organisations are looking for the right candidates with a bachelor’s degree even if that makes the recruitment process more challenging and difficult. According to the authors of the research, employers are depending on college degree as a recruitment filter which may or may not be related to the specific skills required for the role.

So What Should You Do?

In this scenario, earning a bachelor’s degree becomes more important for you even if you wish to become an entrepreneur. Pursuing an online diploma in business will not only help you to earn a recognised qualification, but it will provide you ample scope to do a full time job at a start-up or an established organisation in your chosen field. Once you have acquired adequate experience and feel you are ready to head out on your own, you can rely on your business education to establish your own business.

The truth is skipping college might be a good idea for you if you wish to be an entrepreneur, but skipping higher education altogether can cost you dearly. I would suggest that you enrol for an online higher education programme and earn some relevant experience simultaneously. This will provide you a firm platform for your future start-up.

What Do You Think? 

Would you opt for college or do you think starting your business now is a better idea? Let us know your views, concerns and opinions. We would love to hear from you.

Monday, 15 September 2014

Are Learners More Interested in Traditional Courses?

Online education has made learning more engaging, interactive, accessible and affordable. It is perhaps for these reasons that many learners from around the globe are now opting to study online, instead of traditional classroom learning. Although online learning offers several benefits to the learners, but there is a learning curve and attaining efficiency is an ongoing process.

Providing Enhanced Learning Opportunities

It is imperative that our students stay in the educational system in order to make sure that everyone can access education that will enhance their effectiveness in today’s competitive world. Moreover, after primary and secondary education students need to worry about rising tuitions and growing student debt if they wish to pursue higher education. This requires that we seriously consider how to deliver and offer better learning opportunities for our students, especially regarding web-based learning.

Is Traditional Learning Better?

According to a recent study by researcher Lamont A. Flowers of Clemson University, in-class science courses apparently provided better learning gains to students than science courses offered by online distance learning. The findings of the study, which reveal growing interest of students in traditional learning, were published in the latest issue of Black History Bulletin. Remarkably, African-American learners pursuing traditional science courses claimed higher learning gains as compared to students pursuing online science courses.

The objective of the research was to evaluate the impact of online learning and discover the perceived learning outcomes of African-American students in science courses. The study was sponsored by a donation from the National Science Foundation, offered to Clemson University by Fayetteville State University.

The lead author of the study, Lamont A. Flowers, said, “Given the dramatic shift in the way that many postsecondary institutions now offer educational programs to students, it is imperative that we examine the effects of online distance-education programs on student outcomes.” Prof Flowers is the Executive Director of the Charles H. Houston Center for the Study of the Black Experience in 
Education at Clemson.

Cognitive Effects of Online Education

The researchers claimed that the growth of online courses in mathematics, engineering, technology and science disciplines creates challenge for the higher study community to analyse the efficiency of online distance courses on the learning outcomes of students. Flowers added “It is imperative that researchers continue to conduct studies that employ rigorous procedures to examine the cognitive effects and educational impact of online distance education experiences institutional types, including historically black colleges and universities.”

The study accepts that teaching online involves more than just delivering study materials to learners digitally and performing virtual sessions. However the researchers suggest that online educators “may need to incorporate innovative instructional designs that enhance student-faculty interaction in online courses.”

Flowers further commented “The statistical results indicate that faculty should develop strategies to ensure that online courses provide similar learning gains as traditional face-to-face courses by utilizing instructional approaches and educational technologies to strengthen online distance education.”

The study suggests that online students have as much to learn from these courses as the educators have to learn about teaching in a digital environment. The key to learning successfully online is proper communication and incessant exchange of ideas between students and faculty.

What do you think about online education? Would you prefer digital learning or would you stick with traditional methods? Feel free to share your opinions, views and concerns. We would love to hear from you.