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Ask the right questions before upgrading skills

For people looking to upgrade their business skills, plenty of distanceeducation opportunities are available through learning institutionsacross Canada.

For people looking to upgrade their business skills, plenty of distance education opportunities are available through learning institutions across Canada.

The subjects are limitless and could include business plans, writing skills and small business marketing.

But distance learning isn’t for everybody, cautions the dean of the School of Part-time Studies at Algonquin College in Ottawa.

“Number one: They’ve got to make sure that they’re disciplined en­ough to be successful in the online world,” says Linda Rees.

Just like in the classroom, distance education requires lots of reading, researching, writing and test-taking.

With institutions across Canada offering distance education, it’s important students do research to find the right fit.

“Is there a facilitator?” asks Colla Jean MacDonald, a professor and distance learning expert at the University of Ottawa.

She says it’s important that courses have somebody to whom the students can turn to for assistance.

Students should also find out if the course can be applied towards a future diploma or degree.

“Different institutions have different characteristics,” says Jeff Miller, the senior manager of distance learning at the University of British Co­­- lumbia.

To make the most of one’s distance education experience, students must ask the right questions before the experience begins.

 
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