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Challenges Of Graduate School Essay

1024 words - 5 pages

Challenges of Graduate Studies & Strategies for Success

Challenges of Graduate Studies & Strategies for Success
The modern job market makes advanced education necessary, but graduate studies are never an easy task. Distance learning, while it does add a layer of convenience, can also cause additional issues for some graduate students. A study performed by the Babson Research Group found that over seven million higher education students opted for online learning options in 2013 (Blair, 2014). However, as Reiss points out, “It’s one thing to start your online degree, but it’s another to finish it (2014)”. If distance learning graduate students are to succeed and overcome the ...view middle of the document...

Many seek online learning options so that they can maintain their current job while earning their degree. For most of these individuals, online learning is very different than traditional educational options. To some, computers themselves are foreign. Even those who do possess advanced computer skills experience issues acclimating themselves to online learning platforms, resources and communications. These complications, while only initial for most, can nonetheless prove daunting.
Internal Struggles
Virtually all graduate students, whether taking courses online or by traditional methods, experience a greater amount of stress. During graduate studies, many also deal with issues of boredom with their chosen studies or school in general and find themselves less naturally dedicated. Online learning adds the additional internal obstacle of self-motivation. Many find it easier to procrastinate on assignments when there is no physical person or place to routinely report to. These internal struggles can lead to feelings of inadequacies or impending defeat.
Strategies for Success
It would be misleading to state that there exists any method that will make online graduate studies easy. However, there are many strategies that will aid in success and decrease common stressors. By creating and effectively managing a routine, acquiring a strong support system, and utilizing all available resources, graduate students can avoid or overcome the obstacles that many face.

Effective Time Management and Routine
Effective time management is crucial element of any successful graduate program. Online learning only heightens the need for this basic essential. Time management strategies must maximize every moment to its greatest potential by cutting wasteful activities and multitasking when able. Once a time management plan is created, students should devise a set routine that allows ample time each day for all common activities. Routines serve to set patterns of activities which make accomplishing daily and weekly goals more achievable.
A Strong Support Network
It is a well known fact of the human psyche that individuals perform better when they have eternal sources of motivation and encouragement (Rabideau, n.d). Graduate studies are certainly no exception to this. Students should enlist the support of others who can offer this motivation and encouragement. A strong support network must consist of...

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