There are so many resources and guides about going back to education, and the problem is, most of them are written for high schoolers. The reality is that over 40% of college students are older, often with kids and full-time jobs. If you find yourself in this demographic, here’s a definitive guide to going back to school as an adult from English Online Training. Let’s get learning!
Why start studying again?
Well, to increase your learning, of course! But there are so many other reasons. For one, you significantly increase your earning potential, as employees are willing to offer higher-paying jobs for more qualified candidates. In addition, you’ll be able to transition into different career paths if you opt for education in another industry. Going back to school also offers specific training to further your career and become competitive in the job market.
What Degree Should I Opt For?
Older students have lots of options for education, including online courses, professional certifications, doctoral programs, traditional degrees, and short diplomas. The one you pick depends entirely on your current commitments and how much time you have to devote to your schooling. For example, if you have a lot of family obligations, an online degree or training program might be right for you. Little more time (and money) on your hands? Go for a more prolonged and more intensive program!
Balancing Work and Life
According to PMI, achieving that elusive work-life balance can be incredibly challenging. Be prepared for an adjustment period as you iron out the kinks of managing your family along with your new schooling commitments. Be sure to enlist the support of your partner and other family members in school drop-offs, preparing meals, and more so you can focus your energy on getting a good ROI from your education.
If you’re retaining your day job, it will be prudent to set expectations at your work so that your team members can support you through achieving balance as well. Many employers offer professional development courses, which may be worth exploring as an alternative to traditional education, especially if it supports your larger goals and career ambitions.
Also, one of the best things you can do for yourself when it comes to balance is make sure you’re getting enough exercise! If you don’t have time for the gym, simply incorporating some more walking while running errands can make a big difference in your overall health and wellbeing.
After all, your schooling will be over before you know it! Make the most of your education by managing your learning. Identifying your strengths and weaknesses will help you take responsibility for your learning. You can then apply your strengths to go above and beyond in your coursework and weaknesses to challenge yourself with complex topics and assignments. In addition, study smart and learn to be strategic about details like note-taking and study timing, so you still have time for work and family obligations.
Education for Education
One of the most valuable things you can return to school for is to pursue an education degree. Getting an education degree will enable you to help pass the gift of education on to the next generation. Also, online degree programs can help you start and finish a degree conveniently within the constraints of your schedule.
Using What You’ve Learned to Start a Business
When you’re planning your education and deciding what kind of program you’re going to opt for, be sure to also carefully consider your next steps. For example, many individuals choose to go back to school to start their own business. Consider all the details if this sounds like you — from taxes and employees to funding and how to set up a new company. You can learn how to start a new company online. Forming an LLC can be worthwhile for entrepreneurs, as it offers limited liability, tax advantages, and increased flexibility.
Going back to school as an adult presents a whole new set of challenges. But you’re older, wiser, and with more experience under your belt. This means that you’ll ace your new college experience and make it through with flying colors. You’ve got this!
With over ten years of experience, English Online Training is here to help! Click here to book a free trial lesson.
Thanks to Joyce Wilson at teacherspark.org for writing this post