Distance learning is a popular way of accessing education for people who would otherwise be unable to attend a traditional college – either because of work, family commitments, disability, location or travel difficulties. Because students work through their course in their own time, this method of study offers a great deal of flexibility, allowing students to gain the qualifications they need with as little as 3 hours per week of study.
However, many students wish to gain their qualification more quickly, spending more time on their studies and moving through the course faster. At Distance Learning College and Training, our courses are flexible in duration, so students can move through the course at a pace that suits them.
For some people, fast tracking is the best option for gaining a qualification quickly, but there are a number of different factors to consider before you decide to fast-track your course.
Things to Consider Before You Fast Track:
Fast-tracking isn’t always a simple case of doubling your study hours and halving the time it takes to complete the course – administrative and structural elements of your course might affect the amount of time your qualification will take to complete.
Depending on the Institute your qualification is accredited by, you may need to sit examinations. The way Institute examination periods fall can have a big influence on the length of time it can take to complete your course. Most institutes have several exam periods throughout the year, so you’d usually expect to take one or two exams in each exam period.
If you fast track your course, you’ll need to fit the same number of exams into a shorter period of time, which means that you’ll need to sit more exams in each examination period. This can make it very difficult to complete some courses in a short space of time, as it may require you to complete as many as six examinations in one sitting!
Working around examination dates is an important consideration when deciding whether it will be practical to fast track your course – your Tutor or Student Liaison officer will be able to help with exam periods and advise on the best way to fit everything in.
Your Other Commitments
Committing to a distance learning course is a big decision, and completing a qualification via distance learning requires hard work and discipline. It’s important to look carefully at the amount of time you’ll be able to spare for your studies after work, family, shopping, housework, hobbies, holidays and travel are taken into consideration – it’s easy to overestimate the amount of time you’d be able to devote to distance learning.
If you’re in doubt about whether you’d be able to fast-track your qualification, it’s better for your progress and your confidence to start slow and increase your study time if you’re comfortable doing so than it is to take on too much and struggle with more work than you can handle.
How Fast-Track Study Works:
At Distance Learning College and Training, we ask our students to commit a minimum of 3 hours per week to their studies. However, many students find that they’d like to commit more time than this and complete the course more quickly.
This is easily arranged – when you enrol on a course, your tutor will discuss your timetable with you and will help to tailor this around your requirements based on how much time you’d like to dedicate to the course.
Your time commitment is very flexible, so if you’d like to spend more time studying initially but ease off at a later date this shouldn’t be a problem, for example if you know you’ll be travelling with work and won’t be able to spend as much time studying.
Similarly, if you initially started off studying three hours per week, but then found that you had more time to spare, you would be able to step up your studies for this period and then drop back to three hours per week at a later date if you needed to – your tutor will be happy to help you work changes like this into your timetable.
At Distance Learning College we’ll do our utmost to fit your course around your requirements, and our flexible approach to study allows us to tailor a distance learning course to fit virtually all circumstances. To find out more about how Distance Learning College can help you gain the qualification you need via flexible distance learning, contact one of our expert course advisors today.