If you ask distance learners why they chose online college classes rather than attend a program at a traditional college campus, many will say that the convenience was the major factor in their final decision. Others will boast the fact that they spent a lot less on their online degree than they would have dished out if they had attended classes at a traditional college campus. The big savings for online students are coming from the reduction of unnecessary expenditures that a traditional college requires.
Here are five crucial ways that online college classes save students money:
1) Eliminates the Room and Board Fees– The elimination of room and board fees can reduce the college bill up to almost 50% for students. This is thousands of dollars in savings in the matter of just one semester of classes. Although living at “home” may also require payment of rent, utilities and other living expenditures, chances are: staying at home and studying classes online is usually less expensive than attending classes and living on campus.
2) Meal Plans are not Necessary – Of course, everyone needs to eat, and although colleges boast their meal plans as package “deals” in their fee structure, college students who live on campus often find that they would have spent less money on food if they had the kitchen facilities and could shop at the grocery store and cook their own dinners. Additionally, it’s not that often that you hear about college students bragging about how good the food is at a college campus – because, quite often, the food is not restaurant or home-cooked quality.
3) Cut Down on the Travel – Whether a student lives on campus or off-campus, there are still going to be travel expenses between home and the traditional college campus for several breaks and long weekends throughout the year. Online college classes completely eliminate the expense of travel by offering their curriculums to students who only need a steady Internet stream at home. Although this seems like a minor expense, the gas that is required to get to and from class every day can add up to hundreds of dollars over the course of the year. Don’t forget the time savings that cutting out traveling from home to class will create, too!
4) Forget the Expensive Textbooks – Most online classes present all of the information in some type of download-able form, eliminating the exorbitant costs of textbooks, thus saving the students hundreds of dollars, and possibly even thousands, per semester. One textbook, as most college students already know, can cost anywhere between $50 and $300! Multiply that figure by the amount of classes that a student is taking, and the textbook expenditure can easily put a massive dent in the wallet. While traditional college students can sometimes find a used version – or eBook version – of the book at a lower, discounted cost, there is no doubt that books for college classes are yet another expense that most distance learners do not have to worry about.
5) Tuition costs – Tuition costs are going to vary widely from college to college, depending on the popularity of the college and whether a student is attending an in-state college. Considering the fact that e-learners can earn their degree in less time than traditional campus college students and in-state versus out-of-state has no application in the online world of colleges, the reduction of college tuition costs can also be added to the list of financial savings that distance learners can tap into. Taking CLEP tests and seeking ways to earn college credit for life experiences can also accelerate a student’s degree and clip off even more savings.
When considering whether to take online college classes or attend traditional college courses on campus, the cost savings that online students will see should definitely be taken into consideration. Simply add the five ways to save that are listed above together; the savings for a college student who elects to pursue their degree through an online college can easily add up to thousands of dollars per semester. When you combine the savings that will accumulate, semester after semester, with the convenience and flexibility of taking online classes, there are iron-clad reasons why more and more people are deciding to make the commitment to online colleges. Nobody can afford to spend more than they have to on their higher education.