4 Things Returning Students Need to Know When Going Back to School Later in Life

You started your career, started a family, and started settling down- but you’re still hungry to learn. Maybe you need a degree for a promotion, or maybe you want to go down a degree path that you never had the chance to pursue. 

Whatever the case may be, making the decision to go back to school is a big deal. There’s a whole different dynamic for students who are farther along in life than the stereotypical 18-year-old just beginning to discover their options.

Here are 4 tips you need to know in order to successfully get a degree later on in life. 

1. Opt For Online

About 68% of online college students are working professionals with an average age of 32 years old. It’s no surprise that this schooling method is so popular, considering how flexible and cost-effective it is. 

With so much to balance at once, online learning has proven to be the best option for adult students wanting to return to school. When you opt for online education, you’re able to have more control over how you pace your learning so that you can still keep up with daily responsibilities.

2. Meet With Professors

Whether you’re in-person or online, you don’t want to miss out on making connections with your professors. Take time to interact with them and ask them questions, whether over video call or in their office. 

Oftentimes, networking with faculty opens up opportunities for greater career advancement. You’ll have access to more job options, mentorship, and references by maintaining a healthy relationship with all your professors.  

3. Pace Yourself

The truth is, you have a lot more on your plate than the rest of the students around you. You’ve dedicated your time so far to building your livelihood, and those responsibilities don’t go away when you go back to school. 

Be sure to be patient with yourself so that you can pace yourself properly. You don’t want to overload your schedule and overwork your mind until you end up underperforming. Set yourself up for success by being careful about how you structure your education. 

4. Use On-Campus Resources

As an adult student, it may be harder to keep up with on-campus events and student life. However, you can still reap the benefits that often come with being enrolled.

Many universities offer free counseling sessions, free gym memberships, and free access to facilities such as music studios or research centers. Ask your advisor what benefits come with being a student so that you can save money on paying for those services off-campus.