You’ve heard the statistics: The average college student graduates with $28,400 in debt. But what about the average adult who wants to continue their education but doesn’t have time for traditional classes? The reality can be brutal—the constant questions of when you’ll have time to get the education you need for your career (or next career) can start to feel overwhelming. If you’re not part of a cohort—an online community of learners in the same class working through the same course materials together—you’re missing out on a huge piece of the learning revolution that’s happening right now.
For anyone with a job, a family or other responsibilities to juggle, the reality can be hard—the constant questions of when you’ll have time to get the education you need for your career (or next career) can start to feel overwhelming.
There’s no doubt that a traditional brick-and-mortar college or university has its benefits, but if you want to pursue your degree online, where do you start? How do you find an accredited program that fits into your busy schedule and budget? Do you have enough time on your hands after work and before bedtime to complete assignments at home? How will this affect your other commitments like family life and friends?
These are all valid questions that deserve thoughtful answers. However, if we take them one by one instead of together—by focusing on what we want individually rather than how we fit into our cohort community—we miss out on something valuable. The best way for us all to learn anything is together.
If you’re not part of a cohort—an online community of learners in the same class, working through the same course materials together—you’re missing out on a huge piece of the learning revolution that’s happening right now.
Here are some reasons why:
- Courses are more fun when you have a group of people to learn with.
- You can learn at your own pace, or even skip over parts that don’t interest you.
- You can learn from others and share your knowledge with them.
- You can get help from instructors and other students as needed.
You learn best when you learn with peers
In a group, you learn best when you’re partnered with others who are trying to learn alongside you. Your memory is strengthened by the shared experience; your motivation is improved by having other people around to keep you on track; and your ability to retain information for a longer period of time improves because there are more resources available for learning, which also helps everyone else in the group.
How does this happen? It all comes back to how our brains function. We are social creatures that rely on each other for survival and success in life. Our brains evolved over thousands of years specifically so that we could work together as teams in order to solve problems faster than if we worked alone. When we study together as groups our brains work together at an accelerated rate compared with studying alone because they crave community connection. Learning together can be in one-on-one tutoring sessions or in classroom environments.
Instructors usually teach live, on-demand and at a pace that makes sense for real life.
But there’s another, more important reason why live cohort-based courses are so effective. Instructors are usually available to answer questions as they arise, and you can ask them questions during class or after class. You can also ask them questions at any time, in a group setting or individually.
In short: Live instructor-led courses are not a one-way information stream; instructors engage with students throughout the course so that every student learns at their own pace.
Our revolutionary Watch and Learn platform allows you to access your classes anytime, anywhere live or on-demand.
All of our live cohort-based courses are delivered through a platform that is accessible from any device and easy to use. It is secure, reliable and gives students the flexibility they need to learn on their own schedules.
In other words, you can be a teacher without even knowing it. You’re not just learning from professors and teachers; you’re also teaching yourself. This means that the role of “teacher” is more broad than ever before. It no longer means just those who stand behind podiums and lecture halls; it includes everyone who takes initiative to learn something new—even if they aren’t necessarily intending to teach others about their newfound knowledge.
Live cohorts and new technology
The future of online education is cohort-based courses, which offer new and exciting ways to learn.
Cohort-based learning is different from traditional online classes in that you can learn at your own pace while interacting with other students and instructors through live video chats and group projects. This allows you to work on projects outside of class hours, so you can fit learning into your life instead of having it take over. You’ll also have access to mentors who are experts in their field and can help guide you along the way.
With the right tools, live cohort-based courses increase engagement and engagement drives student success. This is a win for everyone involved in your learning ecosystem: students get better grades and job opportunities, instructors get happier students who know their course content better, and administrators save money by reducing dropout rates.
When students study together in groups or with instructors present (as opposed to watching lectures alone), they are more engaged with their classmates because they can see who understands what and where the gaps are between them all. This leads to deeper learning outcomes overall because students learn from each other as much as from teachers or textbooks.