Whether you are looking to a residency program or not should also be on your mind when you consider a master degree online. Unbeknown to many, not all online degrees are exclusively online. Some actually do require you to spend some hours in a physical classroom or lab.
At this point you might be thinking that it is not necessary to even explore the ones that require this time commitment. There are a couple of reasons actually, why these programs should be of interest. Increased networking opportunities are definitely an advantage of a master degree online that entails classroom engagements.
It is easier to facilitate networking when you put people in the same room. This is the advantage of programs with opportunities like these. Furthermore, you may benefit from the heightened interaction too academically.
After all, when your peers and professors are within reach, it is easier to ask queries relating to your subjects. The interchange of knowledge and ideas happens at an increased rate. Because of the convenient and self-paced online environment, people tend to take their own time responding to you.
Furthermore, some courses are just better off with residencies. This is due to their emphasis on experience or practical learning. Some courses place a great value on practical experience, and if yours does as well then you should definitely choose an online program that offers a lot of classroom time.
Take note that this may not be as urgent if you are in a field that is knowledge-based. Some programs really can deliver all the information you need online. In cases like this students don’t worry too much about residencies.
You should think about the amount of time you can give to a residency should you be of the opinion that it will enhance your studies. School offer different residency programs with different requirements. You could be expected to do half the course online, the other half practically on site.
Time being a huge factor, those who don’t have too much to spare will seek out programs that are not too demanding residency wise. You can get away with just a couple of days per semester in some courses. There are courses that require just one semester out of all the years of study.
These programs also have 'big brother' versions that demand a lot of time on campus. Be sure that whatever you choose is in line with your realistic capabilities. After all, a lot of people pick an online program to spare themselves the trouble of having to go to campus, among other things.
When thinking about the master degree online program and its residency, a major consideration is of course the distance you need to travel to the physical location of the institution. The farther your location from that base, the lower the residency requirements you may want to take. This saves not only sweat, but also money.