Earning career certification online is an excellent way to begin a promising career without sacrificing valuable time away from your current job. Enrolling in medical billing and coding classes online gives you flexibility with the same end result you’d have if you attended classes in person. Together with the benefits of online learning, you’ll also encounter challenges. Find out what those challenges might be and how to overcome them.
Challenge #1: Technology Complications
Although technology is everywhere today, there is still the potential for breakdowns and misfires when you rely on it to get an education. You could face technical issues with the specific software or teacher/student interface the school uses, complications regarding your own knowledge of how to use computer software, or other technical issues like power outages or a poor connection. Regardless of the situation, technology can often leave you frustrated.
Solution: Be Proactive
Although you can’t prepare for the unknown, you can be as proactive as possible by taking the time to learn the software before classes begin. If possible, visit the campus technology center to get a one-on-one tutorial on how to use the computer program you’ll be using during your online classes. Obtain the name, number and email of a technology support person you can contact for future questions or concerns. Set yourself up for success by having a clear plan in place for potential technological problems.
Challenge #2: Connecting with Instructor and Students
While learning information and completing assignments on your own time is convenient, it can potentially leave you feeling out-of-touch with the instructor and other students. Attending classes in person makes you feel valued as a student and offers the benefit of learning from your peers. Online learning can make you feel alone.
Solution: Use the Student Interface
Online learning interfaces are conveniently set up with features like chat boards, conversation threads or the ability to email specific individuals. Use the online interface provided to connect with classmates and the instructor. Pose questions and offer your own insights to establish an online relationship with both peers and the instructor. Don’t be afraid to pick up the phone and contact others. If you have time, you could even create a study group to meet in person once a week.
Challenge #3: Staying Accountable for Work
It’s far easier to fall behind on readings and assignments when you don’t have to report to your instructor face-to-face regularly. You could easily find yourself falling behind on all of the work if you don’t hold yourself personally accountable for completing the coursework in a timely manner.
Solution: Set a Schedule
As an online student, you must set a schedule for studying, reading and completing assignments and stick to it. Plan your week taking into account the required readings and assignments, then budget your time accordingly. Keep yourself on track by spending an allotted amount of time on coursework each day. You won’t fall behind if you hold yourself accountable for the work that needs to be done.
Online classes pose a different set of challenges that other types of schooling. However, every challenge you face does have a solution if you are willing to find it. Stay positive and keep your end goal in mind. Remember that when you are working toward a better future no job is too hard.