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In-Person or Online Learning? A College Transition Experience

Completing high school and choosing to attend college is a big deal. COLLEGE… Sounds scary, right? Professors; Expensive textbooks; Lectures; Exams; Homework; and meeting new people.

The transition from high school to college can be a daunting experience for just about anyone. Usually, individuals have some level of control and choice in what kind of school they attend or what they want to study. Students want to have a say in their overall college experience.

In-Person or Online Learning? A College Transition ExperienceOnline Learning vs. Traditional Classroom Setting
Since the COVID-19 Pandemic, there has been a significant acceleration in the availability of online learning, especially for college students. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, about 15% of college students in the United States attended primarily online institutions in 2020. The appeal of online learning is that most institutions offer fully remote programs that benefit working students.

As a student myself, I truly valued having the opportunity and privilege to take online courses because I lived more than an hour away from campus. Online learning gave me more time with my loved ones and helped me gain responsibility and leadership skills throughout my online courses.

According to Cooke (2024), 70% of students agree that online classes are better than traditional classroom settings based on reduced expenses, schedule convenience, becoming more skilled with using technology, and better retention of learned information. Moreover, online learning can help students retain between 25% and 60% more information, compared to traditional classroom settings. Furthermore, if you are a student who cares about the environment, online learning also uses 85% fewer CO2 emissions per student compared to learning in a traditional setting.

Student Perspectives
There is little research in comparing students’ experiences of the two modalities of learning; online learning and traditional classroom settings. However, a study conducted by Frontiers in Psychology sought to examine undergraduates’ preference for academic performance, class material, and assessment in online learning and traditional classrooms. Students expressed a preference for completing activities face-to-face rather than online, but there was no significant difference in their test performance between the two modalities.

In addition, students expressed a strong preference for class discussions to be face-to-face, because they felt more engaged and received more immediate feedback compared to traditional learning. What is more interesting is that students in this study appreciated the convenience of completing writing activities online in their own time, but strongly preferred to discuss course content with their peers in a classroom setting rather than online. This study concludes that online learning and traditional learning lead to similar levels of academic performance, but ultimately it comes down to student preference in the type of learning that is most beneficial for their unique needs.

Choosing to attend college is a great start. Making the right decision about how to successfully achieve your academic goals is an even better start to your college journey.

Are you looking for a safe space to discuss decisions regarding college and further education? Together we can provide you support and guidance at Apple Psychological. See our website Apple Psychological to learn more about the services our practice offers, including the College Transition Team.

Cooke, C. (2024). In-person VS online learning statistics: The top list of 2024. Upskillwise. https://upskillwise.com/in-person-vs-online-learning-statistics
Hamilton, I. (2024). By the numbers: The rise of online learning in the U.S. Forbes. https://www.forbes.com/advisor/education/online-colleges/online-learning-stats/
Kemp, N., & Grieve, R. (2014). Face-to-face or face-to-screen? undergraduates’ opinions and test performance in classroom vs. online learning. Frontiers in Psychology, 5. https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2014.01278

In addition, Apple Psychological offers other Support for parents and teens. Find out more information and Register HERE or book a free consultation by Clicking Here

How To Support Your Child During The College Application Process

Applying for college can be very daunting and time consuming for highschool juniors and seniors. Students have to focus on excelling in their current classes while prepping for their future and what school or major they want toHow To Support Your Child During The College Application Process pursue. Between deadlines, essays and forms that need to be completed, students can easily feel overwhelmed and confused. Adding in the fear of not getting into their dream school or not having a “perfect” application profile, students will need support during this stressful time. Here are some tips for how you can support your child during their application process:

Research schools and highlight important dates
Every college has specific dates for when your student can apply. Research dates and information that your student may not know such as application options like Early Decision, Early Action and Regular Decision. Familiarize yourself with what each school has to offer your student to help narrow down which schools would be a best fit. For example, If your student is interested in athletics and attending a big school, research facilities, support services and housing services to see how your student will be supported throughout their time at the school.

Plan a visit
All colleges offer campus tours throughout the week where your student can visit campus and learn more information about the school. Some schools offer Q&A’s with students and class visits where your student can experience what it is like to be a student at the school for a day. There are also open house events where students can ask questions about financial aid and speak to faculty; these events can help your student envision what school may be the best fit for them.

Reassure your student
The college application process consists of a lot of excitement and hope when visiting a university your student is interested in; however, the process also consists of rejection and disappointment for many students. Remind your student that their hard work and dedication is recognized and will yield the best results. A lot of students compare themselves to their peers since the process is so competitive. This can lead to your student feeling discouraged. Support your child by acknowledging their accomplishments and celebrating their hard work.

The college application process can heighten a student’s anxiety and lower their self esteem. The workload during this time can be very heavy for a student and support from peers and family can be extremely beneficial. Celebrating your student’s wins and assisting in the process by planning trips or researching schools can take a lot of pressure off your student’s shoulders. This can help them succeed in meeting all of their deadlines. Apple Psychological’s College Transition Team can help further support your students during this stressful process. Our team of clinicians understand the difficulties of transitioning to college and are prepared to support your child through treatment and multimodal therapies. Learn more about Apple Psychological’s college transition team at College Transition Team .

In addition, Apple Psychological offers other Support for parents and teens. Find out more information and Register HERE or book a free consultation by Clicking Here