Why Online Students Drop Out?

Why online students drop out?

Why online students drop out?

Research says that online students have lower retention rate than on campus students. It means if you are an online student, the chance of graduating could be lower than studying on campus. However, as long as you do it right, you will make sure you will reach graduation. This is not to scare you, but to make sure you are preparing everything correctly.

The program can get out of hand.

Attending online classes are challenging. If you start without anticipating what is expected of the program, it can suddenly be overwhelming. It will shock you. This might slowly pull you away from pressing forward. At times like this, it’s actually the moment you need to press on. Adjust your schedules, pace down other activities so you have more time for your study. If you want to be radical, cut down all other activities until you find tune your study rhythm. Studying on campus means you have other people making your schedule. Online study means you manage your own schedule. This is a benefit you can make use of, the flexibility of the whole system. However, it can be a disadvantage if you don’t learn to manage. Learn to manage. Learn to learn.

You go through changes in life.

Whether it’s a big or small change, this can distract your studying pattern. How ready are you to face any changes in life? Some change can come very abruptly and unexpectedly. Some can be as simple as a friend rearranging a lunch or shopping date. How are you physically, mentally and emotionally prepared to faces any changes that might come? I have seen students taking a break due to major, also small, changes in life. Taking a break usually leads to a forever break, ie, dropping out. It doesn’t always have to be the case. The most important thing is you know you are well in state of being strong and ready enough for anything good or bad that might come. The most major changes I have seen that bring the biggest impact to online students are birth, death, and unfortunately, (civil) war. One or two kidnaps (true story!).

Everything else might be less major but still could bring a big impact in your study process. There is a whole chapter in my book, Online Learning MASTERY: Handbook for Online Degrees: 7 Simple Steps to Your Graduation, Reaching A Higher Level in Life, that deals with this. The chapter is Agility Mastery, if you need help on how to be healthy physically and emotionally. The exercise in that chapter will help you get into the pattern of being agile.

It is mostly common sense, however, common sense is not always common practice.


Low quality.

When you find the quality of the program is not up to your standard, this only means you have not done your homework right. We talked about accreditation and fake degrees, make sure to at least start something that’s accredited. This is probably the only time I would advise you to drop out, if you really are not happy with what is being delivered. However, you surely need to consider other factors, such as, tuition fees that has been paid. Can you get a refund? It’s still not ideal, but better than the alternative. Imagine if you continue studying something that’s below your standard? Similarly, different expectation of a certain program will lead to dropout.

online students drop out

You don’t get the needed support.

Support here can be very broad. There are support you can live without, although it’s almost always useful to always get all the support you need. Even then you need to see the quality and source of support you’re getting it from. There are, however, essential support absolutely need to succeed in learning online. One of the most important ones is the tech support. You won’t need this everyday, but when you do, you want to get the support fast and reliable. Other supports are career and study counselor. Depending on the circumstances it can go as far as the exam board.

Why do you need them? I studied on campus but there was a time I disagreed with the project I was given. I took it to the exam board and after examining the case they change the grade from 6 to 8 (0f 10). Don’t think you can always do this and get your grade up by the Exam Board, however, if you strongly feel there has been an unfair practice, yes, you do want to take this to the Exam board. Especially if it’s a matter of passing and failing grade.

There are many different support you need depending on your certain circumstance throughout the years you’re an online student. Find out what kind of supports do your potential education providers have available for you. Talking about support, I must mention that there are external supports out there that provide you service like doing your assignments or writing your paper for you. This is not the support I’m talking about. Those external providers make money only from lazy students, not people like you.

Lack of $$$.

Much of it is really lack of preparation, or anticipation. Studying online often gives students the flexibility to pay on terms. If you don’t have enough backup for a rainy day, a simple lay off could cause you to drop out. Yes, I said simple because with the automation and outsourcing of many professions, don’t be surprised if your company is going through a reorganization. What happens is during pilot project there will be humans, like you and me, to help execute project implementation. Anything that has a pattern after that will be made a software or app for it, then comes reorganization. Humans to AI. Stephen Hawking said it best. So, don’t panic if it will ever happen to you. Consider it as a blessing in a disguise as a whole new world will open up before you!

Big corporations are shifting many departments to Asia away from Europe and America. If you’re in Asia, chance is you might have a room to have a back up, looking at the jobs trends. Whether you live in America, Asia or Arctic, you must have a financial back up. It doesn’t take a financial planner to understand this. Just simply make sure you regularly earn more than you spend. If it doesn’t add up, look for other source of income. Rocket science? Be creative with your neighbours in being each other’s nanny for the children. There are millions and millions of ways to survive, you need to design your life to be circumstance proof.

How are you living your life in terms of being creative with your resources and life style?

Stop looking at your parents as your bank. Guess what, they aren’t! They need to live too, so, live them alone living a happy life without you having to bother them. Regardless they mind or not, even do it gladly for you, still I think they deserve to see their children (in adulthood, mind you!) succeed with own resources. Bill and Melinda Gates know this best. Just as their children.
Why online students drop out? There are really more reasons than mentioned above. Keep going, don’t quit!

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