Online Psychology Learning
What's the Difference Between a Traditional and Online Psychology Degree Program?
While identical in coursework and academic quality, the experience of earning a psychology associate degree online is different from that of a traditional, on-campus program. Prospective students should examine what they want from a psychology degree and decide whether online learning fits their lifestyle, personality, learning preferences, and career goals. While an online degree provides flexibility, independence, and freedom, it also requires considerable self-motivation and discipline.
Online: Students can remain employed and can often keep their regular work schedule. They can choose when to complete their coursework. Without geographical limitations, distance learners can select the school that best fits their interests and career goals.
Traditional: Learners may need to quit their job or adjust their work schedules to accommodate on-campus classes. Students are restricted to local schools or institutions in areas where they want to live. Those who do not wish to relocate may settle for a nearby program that does not meet their preferred criteria.
Access (libraries, on-campus activities, office hours).
Are Online Psychology Associate Programs Cheaper Than Traditional Programs?
While tuition costs for online programs remain similar to traditional programs, distance learners do not incur costs for transportation, course materials, childcare during class hours, or meal plans. They also do not incur fees for recreation centers and other campus amenities. Online students only pay for tuition, distance learning fees, and textbooks.
Perhaps most importantly, the flexibility of online learning allows students to keep their current job to pay for their degrees.
Online learners frequently pay in-state tuition for programs based outside of their home state. This factor alone can dramatically reduce tuition costs, especially when compared to out-of-state tuition rates for traditional, on-campus programs. Sometimes, students must live in-state for at least a year to establish residency before qualifying for cheaper in-state tuition. Distance learners can typically take advantage of in-state tuition rates immediately, regardless of where they reside.
Online psychology presents the same course material as their on-campus counterparts, but uses different delivery methods. Online students rely heavily on technology to access course materials, participate in class discussions, and take quizzes and exams. Distance learners connect with their instructors and peers through video conferences, email, instant messaging, blogs, wikis, and threaded discussion boards.
Most programs use a digital learning platform such as Blackboard or Canvas to consolidate online coursework and make courses more accessible.
The technological demands of online learning require that distance learners have a computer and access to reliable, fast internet. They may also need a microphone and video chat capabilities in order to participate in video or audio discussions. Some schools offer online students exclusive discounts on software and other technologies.
Most programs use a digital learning platform such as Blackboard or Canvas to consolidate online coursework and make courses more accessible. Course structure typically depends upon the individual instructor and whether the program runs synchronously or asynchronously. Some instructors record their lectures and make the videos available for distance learners to watch at their own convenience. Others may require students to access lectures, participate in conversations, or take quizzes during real-time sessions.
Online learning requires students to possess a computer with reliable, fast internet. They may also need a microphone and video chat capabilities. Some schools offer online students exclusive discounts on software and other technologies.
Do Online Psychology Associate Programs Have On-Campus Requirements or Clinicals?
On-campus requirements vary by school.
Online VDEO/SSMHGassociate programs that run fully online do not require campus visits. Hybrid programs may include mandatory campus visits to complete classes or labs that students cannot complete online. Other schools may require that learners visit the campus for orientation.
Individuals pursuing a psychology associate degree are not required to complete clinical hours. Typically, students do not engage in clinical psychology coursework or field experiences prior to entering a master's program. Many schools provide support for distance learners, allowing them to complete clinical work and internship experiences at nearby locations under the supervision of a professional psychologist.