How an online program may be your answer to finally fitting in your degree

Online programs offer flexibility for busy adults wanting to earn their degree

A father and son sit together at a desk. The father is taking notes from an online college class on the laptop, while the little guy draws.

For Sarah Stevens, graduate of the Ed.D. in curriculum and instruction program, completing her doctorate was possible only because she chose an online program.

“I didn’t know how valuable this type of program would be to me,” said Stevens. “At the conclusion of my oral and written comprehensive exams, my family moved to Texas. It was because I had chosen the program at KUEC that I was able to continue working on my dissertation virtually.”

Online college courses are popular

Think you can't fit school into your busy schedule? An online program may be your answer. In fact, according to National Center for Educational Statistics, there were over 11.8 million students enrolled in distance education courses at degree-granting postsecondary institutions in 2020. These students enrolled in both online undergraduate and graduate academic programs from a range of private and public postsecondary schools. Online programs attract many different kinds of students.

Technological advances and teaching methods have allowed classes to become more advanced and accessible. The pandemic has also shifted the workforce, often requiring people to learn new skills or improve old skills for their careers. Online programs can give these busy adults an alternative way to learn those skills.

Online college courses have improved

According to a DeBruce Group report, postsecondary institutions are improving their online teaching formats to accommodate students and staff for online learning, including:

  • Training for faculty and staff to help move classroom courses to an online format.
  • Establishing clear communication paths to help engage with adult learners
  • Being mindful of mental health and wellbeing of adult learners


With these improvements and advancements for online college programs, one of the main hurdles that adult learners need to clear is finding the time to take courses – but that’s why online programs are a great fit for busy adults whose work and child-raising schedules won’t allow them to take traditional courses in a classroom.  

Why online can be ideal for busy adults

Why are online classes so helpful? Let us count the ways:

  • They’re flexible. There’s no commute – just sit down and open your laptop.
  • A comfortable learning environment – home versus a classroom.
  • Different options for online learning formats: Self-paced, one-on-one zoom, and video recordings for asynchronous classes.
  • With new skills comes career advancement, or a better career.

With an online program’s flexibility comes a responsibility to be self-motivated and get your work done. Similar to working from home, you must learn to avoid distractions and set priorities to be successful. Decluttering your workspace has proven to be conducive to productivity, so consider determining your priorities and organizing your workspace according to those needs.

Online college courses are available at KU Edwards Campus

Knowing you’re interested in furthering your education virtually is the first step. Now, how do you choose a program? Download our eBook 6 Considerations When Choosing an Online Program for tips and questions to ask when researching online learning options.

Explore all of our online programs.


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