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Distance Learning Costs and Financial Aid

Posted by JamesTork on May 21st, 2019

It's true that distance learning is convenient, but what about the costs? Is distance learning any less expensive than regular learning? What about financial aid? Are those who choose to learn in a 'non-traditional' environment eligible? These are common questions and the answers are important to anyone considering distance learning.

Without an in-depth line-item comparison of 2 programs, it's difficult to answer the question of cost with any certainty. When you consider that the cost of an education today is high, you can expect to pay a comparable amount regardless of whether you attend school on campus or whether you attend online. You might even find that online education ends up costing more than a regular learning environment. You can search around and in doing so probably find a distance learning program that's less expensive, but remember that cheaper doesn't necessarily mean better.

Regardless of the learning environment you choose, you'll have to pay tuition, registration and application fees, and you'll still have to purchase required course materials. And today even those who choose regular learning need personal computers or access to computers that have basic software installed and internet connections. There just isn't any way to get around these costs.

But what you won't have to pay for when you attend school online is room and board, commuting expenses, childcare expenses, a meal plan, parking fees, student insurance and all the other expenses that go along with attending a traditional learning environment. That's where you'll see a difference in costs, and where you'll actually save money. You're going to save time too and as the saying goes, 'Time is money'.

As for financial aid, whether or not you will be eligible is a question you won't know the answer to until you complete and submit a financial aid application. A lot of people don't apply because they mistakenly believe they earn too much money to qualify. What they don't realize is that earnings aren't the only criteria upon which the decision to award financial aid is based.

The decision to award financial aid (as well as how much to award) is based on several other factors including the number of persons in the family, the number of other family members enrolled in college, the applicant's savings and investment accounts as well as assets and other sources of income. Of course, you can start distance learning at any point in our big world. You can sit at your cosy hotel and learn something, that will give an advantage in your future job. Seriously, there are a lot of different online courses that could give you some special features for your next job. 

If you are denied financial aid, or if you aren't approved for the amount you need, you still have other options. You can always apply for a student loan, typically at more favourable rates than other types of loans, but that will have to be repaid over time. You can also apply for any of the numerous grants and scholarships that are always available. Grants and scholarships are awarded to those individuals who meet the eligibility requirements and the nice thing about these sources of money are that they don't need to be repaid!

Also See: Financial Aid, Distance Learning, Learning Environment, Where Youll, Learning, Financial, Distance

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