Many parents and students alike approach higher education like they do vacationing and shopping. That is, they survey the available options, speak with their friends and neighbors, and make decisions based on a simplistic rationale. As this post suggests there is usually more to the decision than meets the eye.
We would suggest the following check-list to use before beginning your search for a college or program.
1. Be aware of the students (or your own) learning style. Independent learners require less structure, supervision, and person-to-person contact, especially with faculty and mentors.
2. Assess the maturity of the student. Leaving home is a mixed blessing for many young college students. If they are ready to leave, the challenge will be valuable in most cases. In some it will pose problems that could have been avoided by waiting another year or two.
3. Distance learning and on-line courses can be attractive and valuable for students who need the support (financial and otherwise) of the home environment. It also requires that students are computer literate and capable of setting their own schedules and work habits.
4. Understand the significant differences between public and private institutions, their tuition rates, scholarship programs, and types of students in residence and/or utilizing their online resources.
5. Consider the importance of accreditation to the quality imperatives of the institution. Accreditation often assures better governance, internal controls, relevant programs, and financial stability of institutions, especially those located in the United States.
Thanks to USA TODAY College