The Brandeis GPS blog

Insights on online learning, tips for finding balance, and news and updates from Brandeis GPS

Online learning: your questions, answered

According to a recent National Center for Education Statistics report on fall 2013 higher education enrollments, more than 670,000 students pursued a degree using online coursework. Where you one of them? If not, you likely have questions about how online learning works. Is it interactive enough? Do students learn in online classes? What are the benefits of online classes vs. traditional classes? What is the timing like?

Online Learning FAQs

We can’t speak for every accredited institution that offers online graduate programs, but we put together some frequently asked questions about the approach we take to online learning at Brandeis GPS:

 

How does online learning at GPS work?
All our courses take place on a Moodle-based platform called LATTE. You’ll log into LATTE to view and download all your readings and assignments; submit projects, papers and exams; receive grades and feedback from your instructors; and participate in class discussions. You’ll find that our approach to online learning is very flexible and convenient: while most GPS courses require you to meet certain assignment deadlines throughout the week, you can log in from any time zone or location to complete your work.

Does Graduate Professional Studies offer student visas to international students?
GPS is unable to issue student visas for its part-time programs, in accordance with U.S. immigration regulations.

What is the maximum number of courses I can take per term?
You can take up to two courses per term. Your student advisor will work with you to determine your bandwidth and schedule for each term.

Can I take a course before formally applying to a program?
Yes, you can to take up to two courses before you formally apply to a program. The completion of courses as a non-matriculated student does not guarantee acceptance into a program, nor does it guarantee courses will satisfy degree requirements.

Are Brandeis and GPS accredited?
Yes, Brandeis University and the Rabb School,Graduate Professional Studies are accredited by NEASC, New England Association of Schools and Colleges.  NEASC is recognized by the US Department of Education as an official accrediting body.

How many courses do the master’s degrees require?
Master’s programs at Graduate Professional Studies are comprised of ten 3-credit courses.

What is the average class size for GPS online classes?
There are generally 16 to 20 students per course. Courses are capped at 20 students.

How long do I have to complete my degree?
You have up to five years to complete a master’s degree from the time you take your first course.

How long do I have to complete a certificate program?
You have up to three years to complete a graduate certificate program.

How many terms are offered in each academic year?
Graduate Professional Studies offers three 10-week terms per academic year.

Can I meet GPS students or instructors in person?
Yes! We offer several on-campus networking events each year. We also hold a commencement ceremony on campus each May. You can find information about scheduled networking events by visiting the Mark Your Calendars page on our website.

What are the GPS application deadlines?
We offer rolling admissions, so you can apply and be accepted at any time. However, if you’re seeking admission for a specific term, please be mindful of the following deadlines for 2016-17 academic year:

Fall: Aug. 16
Spring: Dec. 13
Summer: April 25

Do you require the GRE or GMAT?
We do not! These exams do not test to what our programs are about. Because our degrees are geared toward students who are currently working and seeking to advance their careers in specific industries, we take a more holistic approach toward evaluating applicants. Some of the qualifications we look for include work experience, professional recommendations, and statements of goals. Read more about our application requirements here.

How can I finance my education? Do you offer financial aid?
Our dedicated financial aid counselor will work with you to find the best financial option for you. Many of our students receive tuition reimbursements from their employers. GPS students who have been accepted to a program are also eligible for federal students loans as long as they take two courses per term. Please visit our website for more information.

1 Comment

  1. Engagement and adoption of knowledge are definitely the two biggest challenges with online learning.

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