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8 Simple Steps Of Overcoming Your Fears As An Adult Student

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The number of working adults who are seeking to get a better educational background is constantly increasing. They are considering to enroll in so-called career colleges and online programs. Variety of reasons lie behind this tough decision that many future adult students are more than willing to make. Usually, they want to gain new skills and boost up their knowledge in different fields in order to become more competitive in the job market. Some of them would like to progress in their careers and see no other way than the option of enrolling in college. Although their decision looks like a bold move and many people will approve of their choice, there are certain fears and anxieties that these adults will face along the way.

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Facing the challenges

The bare decision of going back to college, while attending a full-time job can be nerve-wracking. Adults are concerned about a lot of issues that will come up, and that makes them pretty much agitated about this whole ordeal. The first obstacle is undoubtedly the finances. Are their savings sufficient enough to cover all the expenses that college demands? And the second striking thought would probably be about their current boss, and their unimpressed views of them obtaining a new certificate or diploma. But this is where adults sabotage themselves while thinking about these pessimistic scenarios. Truth is, your boss will probably be fascinated by your strong dedication to fulfill your career goals. Your new certificates and diplomas will not be considered as a worthless piece of paper. They will serve as proof of your strong will. When it comes to finances and having a tight budget, registering in an online program is always an option worth considering.

Fear of non-conformity

For many adults, the fear of not being accepted and standing out of the crowd, while attending college is very much real. However, it is worth mentioning that according to the U. S. Department of Education, 40% of the total number of students enrolled in college are students who are 25 years or older. Furthermore, according to the National Center for Education Statistics approximately 3 million people that were 35 years or older, enrolled in college. These statistics are important because they show the bigger picture: “Learning is a lifelong process. ” Most of these fears are unfounded and shouldn’t be the core reason why adult students will decline the idea of attending college. Nonetheless, if the adult student is more than aware that this is too much of an obstacle, they should consider the option of attending online course while enjoying the benefits of staying home. For those adults that were brave enough to enroll in college and take classes with the youngsters, conformity was not big of a problem. They enjoyed interacting with younger students and were fascinated by their enthusiasm for learning.

The finances

The most common question is probably the following: “How am I going to afford all of that? ” And it is a reasonable kind of question that should be asked. If you start to view education as a smart investment that will certainly pay off in the long run, then the sacrifices that you will be willing to make will not seem that harsh. There are colleges out there that are not that much expensive, and as I have previously stated, the varieties of online courses offer more flexible schedules designed for working adults.

Time issues “What if it takes too much time? Will I be able to manage it? ”

The series of expected questions continues with this one. An average adult has more than enough responsibilities during the day. Job responsibilities, raising a family and on top of that, planning to enroll in college. This can increase the stress levels and the skepticism may erupt. However, carefully preplanning everything can make these extra responsibilities way easier. You might be obliged to sacrifice your spare time and leisure activities but it’s definitely worth it. Although, there is a big difference between the traditional form of education and the uprising new method of pursuing a degree online. It is worth mentioning that some companies are welcoming the current trend of obtaining an online degree. This is the perfect opportunity for many adult students who just want to broaden their career horizons.

Completion time

Time is at the focus of everything, right? When it comes to the traditional form of education, a bachelor’s degree is obtained after four years, the master’s degree after two, and approximately 8 years are needed to complete a doctorate program. For young students, this is seen as a challenge and not something that is unattainable. However, for adult students who are forced to calculate every bit of their spare time, this timeline can feel a little intimidating. That is why accelerated learning programs are worth mentioning. These programs will require less time, their semesters are usually 5 weeks long, and getting the accredited degree will take less than a year. Isn’t that cool? And if these things don’t sound optimistic enough, you should know that many programs offer “work experience” credit. Which means that students who have relevant experience in the field, are encouraged to apply towards the completion of the program, and get tested on the subject they are already familiar with.


Many adults are afraid to enroll in a career college or try to obtain an online degree because of the fear that those degrees might not be credible. Furthermore, regarding the traditional education, they may assume that employers are seeking for employees that graduated from highly ranked universities. If we go back in the past and try to envision what was happening then, and how employers selected their top candidates, this statement will definitely be held accountable. However, employment practices have drastically changed and many companies put the same value on degrees obtained by traditional and nontraditional education. This is especially true when it comes to technical skills and their high demand on the job market.

The significance

There is a common misconception that future adult students will not learn anything significant or nearly important while attaining these career colleges or online courses. They fear that it will be a waste of their time and money. Yet, adult students who were courageous enough to accept the challenge and try to make a change, do not share these views. These courses are taught by qualified professors who are experts in the fields. Adult students learn new things that were previously unimagined and had the opportunity to interact with highly qualified individuals and enthusiastic, fellow students. Group work is very significant and working in teams holds a great importance in learning activities. This type of experience is beneficial and highly valued in the workplace.

What are the benefits?

For the adults out there that are still struggling to make the decision of furthering their education, a couple of benefits are worth mentioning:

Future career opportunities

Getting a degree means enhancing the opportunities of a career progression. You might get the promotion that you always wanted, just by enriching your educational skills. Apart from that, if the individual decides to change their profession, there is no better way than to enroll in a suitable course.

Completing a degree

Many adults are able to find work before they finish college. So, this is the perfect opportunity to complete your degree. Stress-free and time manageable.

The importance of high education

Children are prone to follow the steps of their parents. And this is the perfect opportunity to set an example for future generations on the importance of education. Especially, when it comes to better employment opportunities and a bigger impact on society.

Starting your own business

If an individual decides that it’s time to start their own business, the skills learned in a career college, or an online course are invaluable. Managing your own business can be challenging, but with the gain expertise, it can feel less so.

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