Attending physical classes at a university where several other students are enrolled has been the standard way of getting a university degree. However, the average cost of formal education is skyrocketing, and it goes beyond the course alone. This has made alternatives like studying online an effective way of acquiring high-profile degrees like a Ph.D. in Engineering or a Juris Doctor degree in law without incurring large student debts. This post will share six ways online universities can help you save money.
Overhead expenses tend to increase the cost of studying in a university, which is transferred to the students as tuition. In addition, universities are often burdened with their facilities’ expenses, including maintenance, security, utilities, parking and landscaping, campus employees, upkeep and mortgage, and the increasing cost of tenured administrators and professors. However, universities conduct virtual classes when studying online, allowing them to take on more students and more tuition, but at a lower price that eliminates some of the costs mentioned above and reduces student loans.
2. Accommodation and Meals
When staying close to campus, the average cost of rent can be higher than when living in an area outside of driving distance. The annual cost of rent on and within campus varies from $9,498 to $10,823. However, people studying online can stay in neighborhoods where the cost of rent is low, provided they can access the internet. Physical universities often have meal plans that give students little or no choice but to buy. Compared to online schooling, where you can buy your preferred healthy meals at low cost, university meal plans are typically expensive and often of less nutritional value.
When attending a university, you’re required to attend classes regularly. If you have a car, you’d have to buy gas, pay for insurance, and perform occasional repairs. You might have public transportation in some areas, but it isn’t free. You can avoid these expenses with online universities and attend classes without leaving the house.
4. Textbooks and School Supplies
Students often pay twice or thrice the market value for books because they have no choice. Online universities allow their students to download the required books or purchase them from a reseller at a reasonable price. Online universities also give you lectures that are easily accessible within your schedule. You do not necessarily have to buy notebooks or pens; if you’re conscious of your environment, you can listen to a specific lecture repeatedly or make and read notes online without using expensive school supplies like ink for printing.
5. Lab Fees
For science-related degrees, you might need to pay for lab supplies to allow you to perform experiments during practical classes. However, with online schooling, you may only need to read about the experimental procedures and results or watch videos of others performing the experiments.
Even if you have what is considered a slow internet connection, schooling online will save you time compared to physical universities. The time you’d spend walking to the bus station, transporting, and waiting for your next class while on campus can potentially cost you opportunities. Some physical universities offer work-study as financial aid. Still, it can’t be compared to the flexible schedule online universities give, which allows you to work more hours for more money.
Schooling online allows you to adjust your budget and save costs from tuition, accommodation and meals, transportation, textbooks and school supplies, lab fees, and time.