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Adult Student FAQ and Answers

written by: jciotta•edited by: Amanda Grove•updated: 10/6/2010

Learn the answers to adult student faq. We provide answers on everything from the online system used at most colleges to integrating in classes with younger students to classroom questions in general. We will also discuss how to balance work and school.

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    List of FAQ

    Adult Student Frequently Asked Questions As an adult student, you might be fearful of your freshman year. However, there is no reason to worry. Simply refer to this list of faq and answers to educate yourself on college learning today:

    • What is the technology or online system commonly used at most colleges? How do I use it?

    Schools today all rely on online everything from registering to class to bill paying to receiving class assignments. The commonly used system is called Blackboard, which the registrar, bursar, financial aid office and professors use to update student accounts. You will register for class, pay tuition bills, receive report cards and transcripts and class assignments through Blackboard. This article, Get Assistance Using Blackboard Academic Suite, discusses how to use this system.

    • How do I successfully integrate with younger students?

    Professors are happy to have older students in class because they provide wisdom and life experience younger students do not have. They have a totally different perspective on the world. To integrate with younger students, simply be a good listener. Listen to what your fellow classmates have to say. Comment and rebut thoughtfully and respectfully. Do not dominate discussions or speak in a condescending way to younger students. In the end, you may be surprised from what you learn from today's generation of young adults.

    • What is the average class size?

    This number depends on the university and the class. General requirement classes are usually lecture hall sizes, consisting of around 150 students on average. Once you start your major, class sizes will dwindle. Typical class sizes are 25 students, yet many niche classes have a mere eight to 10 students total. As you progress in your major, some classes have a cap on size. Professors may only have 12 students total in the class -- for example, this frequently occurs in a creative writing workshop. The professor only wants select writers in the class and an intimate atmosphere.

    • How many classes do I need to complete a Bachelor's degree?

    This number depends on university requirements and the major. The general answer is you will need 128 credits to graduate. That is at a private university on a full-time course schedule of four classes per semester at four credits per class. Yet this number varies by school and by major -- for example, some science and engineering majors require extra lab classes. It is best to refer to the school's catalog for total credits and major credits to graduate.

    • How can I understand college accreditation?

    As the Distance Learning College Guide says, "College accreditation is a formal recognition, or guarantee, that an entire school or college-or even just one of its programs meets certain standards and provides quality education equivalent to the nation's top accredited online colleges and universities." College accreditation simply means the college is legitimate and upstanding. For example, University of Phoenix is an accredited online learning program vs. clown school, which is not. Make sure the college is accredited, especially if you're receiving tuition reimbursement from your job.

    • How do I balance work and school?

    You need support. Support from your family, bosses and colleagues. Be upfront with everyone and explain you'll need their support or ask for extra support when needed. For example, tell your boss you have finals coming up and you need to leave work at 5 o'clock for the next couple of weeks. Tell her/him, you'd be happy to put in some extra hours after finals are over.

    Be efficient with any free time. Do you have an hour lunch break? Use it to research a paper or read a text. On the subway or commuter train to and from work, study and do homework. On a long car ride where you're not driving, bring texts and study.

    Think about taking a speed reading class before you start your degree. Speed reading is an excellent way to maximize efficiency and decrease workload.

    We hope we answered any adult student faq. Remember to be excited about your immersion into education, and that your life experiences will only make you a more knowledgeable student.

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    "What is College Accreditation & Why is it Important to My Education?" Distance Learning College Guide --

    Photo by Maggie Smith / --