Skip to main content

Debunking the Myths Surrounding Online Education

Online education continues to grow in popularity — particularly among adult students juggling education and career goals. Online Registered Nurse (RN) to Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) programs like the one offered by Lamar University make a good example, providing the flexibility and convenience working nurses need to fit school around their busy schedules.

Moreover, online learning was widely adopted to prevent disease transmission during the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic. For a time, online education became necessary for anyone wanting to continue their schooling. This largely normalized the online education model, exposing a wider audience to the advantages of earning a degree like an RN to BSN fully online.

Yet, many people are still hesitant to try online education. They often point to the challenges of online learning, not knowing that many challenges can be easily overcome or have already been addressed by universities and colleges that offer distance learning programs. Here are a few such challenges and how they are or can be addressed:

Challenge: I Cannot Learn Without Being Around Fellow Students

Many students find the learning experience enhanced by interaction with peers and assume this can only happen in a classroom setting, not knowing online education offers this opportunity as well. Students are motivated by internal and external factors or a mix of the two. Students who rely on external motivation seek praise, encouragement and other stimuli to successfully complete coursework. This is thought to be one of the more common challenges of online learning, but it may no longer be the case.

Online education provides opportunities to interact with peers through classroom discussions on message boards, group projects and internet video conferencing. Learning management systems (LMS) can facilitate effective virtual learning environments that existed prior to the pandemic. In fact, COVID-19 spurred advancements, adoption and widespread acceptance of LMS. Professors and students alike had to learn how to use these systems fluidly and interact naturally via videoconferencing and other digital communications. As with many other aspects of online education, the pandemic helped normalize LMS and virtual interaction.

Challenge: I Am Afraid I Do Not Have the Necessary Technology

High-speed internet connections, the abundance of public places with free Wi-Fi and other advances in technology like LMS enable more students than ever to pursue an online degree. Plus, the government’s new Affordable Connectivity Program is making it easier for people to afford the internet service they need. Many schools also provide technological support to students to ensure coursework is received and submitted in a timely manner and help them address the technical challenges of online learning.

Challenge: I Do Not Think I Will Be Able to Manage My Time Effectively

Many students find balancing a full life with the pursuit of a degree one of the biggest challenges of online learning. But these types of degree programs encourage students to create a study routine, discuss their plan with family and friends who can take over certain responsibilities and look for programs and courses with flexibility.

In addition, some online degree programs are accelerated. For instance, Lamar University’s online RN to BSN nursing courses are only eight weeks in length, and students can complete the entire program in as few as 13 months. With this model, students can complete their degree quickly but still have the flexibility to take lighter courseloads when work and life get too busy.

Challenge: What If My Online Credits Do Not Transfer?

Another online learning myth worth debunking is that online credits will not transfer to brick-and-mortar institutions or even another online school. However, transferability can be equally challenging between brick-and-mortar schools. Transferability can depend on the type of course as well as whether it was earned at a public, private or for-profit institution.

Furthermore, a student must usually earn credits from an accredited institution for those credits to transfer. Lamar University nursing programs are accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN), one of the two main accrediting bodies for nursing programs.

Challenge: What If the Quality of Education Is Lower?

The reasons many prospective students avoid online education actually turn out to be online learning myths. One big online learning myth is that the quality of online education is lower. The reality is that standards vary across schools of all types — on-campus programs included.

To ensure an online program holds itself to an acceptable standard, prospective students should examine a school’s academic credentials, its reputation and the level of experience instructors have teaching in a virtual setting. As mentioned above, accreditation is also a very important factor. An ACEN-accredited nursing program like Lamar’s has thoroughly demonstrated it meets rigorous standards for academic and institutional quality.

Whether sorting through myths or addressing challenges, students thinking about going back to school for their BSN should learn the facts and consider an online education.

Learn about the Lamar University online RN to BSN program.

Related Articles

Request More Information

Submit this form, and an Enrollment Specialist will contact you to answer your questions.

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Or call 866-223-7675

Begin Application Process

Begin your application today!
Or call 866-223-7675 866-223-7675

to talk to a representative.