The five best things about studying online.

Studying online means no more having to change out of pyjamas. High-five to that!


I recently went back to university, and am studying a Masters degree online. And while I may miss blowing off lectures, and going to my favourite campus coffee shop instead, I am a complete convert to online education.

Here are five very good reasons why.

Just as an FYI, you should know that this post is sponsored by the University of New England. But all opinions expressed by the author are 100% authentic and written in their own words.

1. You can wear your onesie all day.

No more brushing your hair so that you look vaguely presentable in an effort to impress your lecturer. No more having to grab a muesli bar for breakfast, because you’re running out the door. No more having to change out of your pajamas.

One of the best things about studying online is that you can do it anytime, anywhere. Your lecture notes, study questions and readings are all collected in a digital workspace – and you don’t need to trek into sandstone university for the sole purpose of attending a one-hour lecture. Stay at home, and study in your PJs instead.

You won’t be needing an alarm clock if you study online, there are no 9am lectures! YES!

2. There are no 9am lectures.

Oh, to be a first-year university student complaining about having to get out of bed at 9am! Those were the days.

But seriously, it’s worth mentioning that there are no 9am lectures, because the point is that – for the most part – there are no specific times you need to be studying. When studying online, you can study when it suits you.

You can read that deathly dry case study on the bus on your way to work, and console yourself with the fact that that you’re using your time effectively. You can type responses to online tutorial questions on your phone, while you’re sitting in the dentist’s waiting room. You can listen to pre-recorded lectures while you’re doing the ironing. Or while you’re driving your kids to soccer practice. Or while you’re going for your morning run.

Online university programs have been specifically developed for people with busy lives who are juggling work, kids, friends and a desire to watch MasterChef, to make it as easy as possible for you to study whenever you can make the time. Not at 9am.


3. You don’t have to lug heavy textbooks around campus all day.


4. There are no drunk, annoying people in your tutorial.

The most obvious reason for this being that you won’t have a physical room that you are required to sit in (most likely with broken air-conditioning) while you discuss that week’s readings – and so there’s no physical space for the drunks to show up in.

But it’s also because when adults go back to study as mature students – which is what the majority of students studying online are – they actually want to be there. The other students in your ‘class,’ who you might discuss readings with on online forums or via email, have only signed up for the degree because they are passionate about educating themselves. About starting a new career, and getting new qualifications. About finding a more fulfilling job.

So your fellow students, who you have to interact with? They’re going to be just as dedicated as you.

Even though we complain  about all the assessments we have due, being able to educate ourselves on whatever we want, whenever we want, it pretty damn awesome.

5. You’re learning something new.

Let’s be honest. There will be days studying online – usually on those days when you have a piece of assessment due the next morning, and you’re still trying to find that one quote from that one source that you know would support your argument – that you will feel like tearing your hair out. You will wonder why you ever started studying this topic. You’ll want to quit.

But the next day, after you’ve handed in your assignment, you will feel awesome. You’ll feel pretty proud, and damn good about educating yourself.

Because it won’t be your lecturer, or tutorial leader, or anyone else in your life that has made you put in the hours – you made yourself do it.

Have you ever tried studying online? How did it compare to showing up in person? (Come on, be honest, everyone loves a sleep in.) 

Choosing a university is like choosing a partner. You want someone who shares your goals, understands your challenges and works by your side to overcome them.

UNE has been the leading innovator of flexible study for over 60 years because we’re committed to helping busy adults study from home so they can balance study with their commitments. UNE now offers a new generation of mobility and flexibility in online education that makes a tertiary education and your dreams more achievable than ever. 

Applications are now open to begin study in 2014.