Student profile – Jason

By Frank Bolger - Last update

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Distance learning is ideal for those whose who need a course to fit in with their lives – rather than the other way around. This writer has spoken to former Bachelor of Arts student, Jason Morgan, about his experience of studying from home.

Morgan is a senior library manager with Cambridge University in England. Before moving to his job there, he earned his degree over four years while also playing attentive parent to his two children, Brian and Anne. He began the MBA with Open University in 1996 and graduated last October.

“I chose distance learning because the kids were young and I was then working in the logistics department of a major trucking company and spent a lot of time travelling. With these pressures on my time, it would have been very difficult to fit in a regular part-time or evening degree programme. I wanted to change careers though but I needed something that would fit my lifestyle. My wife is English and we’d planned to move there so I needed to do the course sooner rather than later. With the Open University you get to choose where and when to study. I’ve studied on trains, planes and automobiles as they say – and I also chose the pace of my learning. ”

According to Jason, “good materials are essential” to distance education. “I was more than satisfied with the standard of the materials provided. The Open Univeristy gave us every thing we needed, and it also provided a paced study guide which tells you every two weeks what material should have been covered or what assignments should be done. ”

Prospective students mustn’t worry about the isolation of studying alone, says Jason. “Some people worry about feeling isolated as a distance learner, but the Open University offers good support. There are monthly tutorials in Dublin where you get an opportunity to meet fellow learners, plus there’s the option of a residential school, and we did e-conferencing to sort out different interpretations of course material. Each student has a personal tutor too. These people also have a day job, so they appreciate your position and are support you. ”

Time management is essential to distance students Jason believes. “Keep up with it all, because if you fall behind and you could get dispirited. And don’t take on too many modules simultaneously, it’s counter-productive as it leads to cramming and a feeling the course is ruling your life. ”

Searching for an online learning programme Simply select ‘Distance Learning’ from the ‘Which Course Type ‘ drop down menu on the Nightcourses. com Course Search page.

Frank Bolger

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