Are you an event planner in search of online event management courses?
With so many options (both online and on-campus) event managers often feel overwhelmed and unsure about which route to take.
With the rapid expansion of technology, the number of online event planning courses has skyrocketed in the last few years, making it a very popular and preferred method for event managers. Nonetheless, there are advantages and disadvantages to both.
Let’s review some of the pros and cons!
The Pros of Online Event Management Courses:
- Flexibility – One of the most popular reasons event managers choose to opt for online courses. Many event managers have a family to support and tend to, a 9-5 job, and various other commitments. With the flexibility of online courses, you are able to work on your coursework whenever and wherever you choose. For some it may be 5am at the local coffee shop, and for others, it may be 11pm at the kitchen counter. Regardless of your day-to-day schedule, online courses are designed to fit every student’s agenda.
- Improve Tech Skills – Even the most simple and user-friendly online courses require some degree of computer knowledge. Think about it – you are reading, learning and submitting documents all from your computer. Not only that, but you will likely become introduced to new programs and software. In traditional school, you will likely be sitting at a desk watching the instructor give you a “How-To” demonstration on these programs, but online courses give you the opportunity to really play around with them and learn the applications in a hands-on environment.
- Increased Participation – Now I know what you’re thinking, how can an online course offer more interaction than face-to-face courses? Stick with me! A vast majority of students suffer from anxiety and a fear of talking in large groups. As an online student, you are engaging in discussions of all sorts, but you are offering your opinions and telling your stories behind a screen. Because of this, online courses have started to see a drastically higher participation rate than traditional face-to-face courses. The benefit to you? You are engaging in a much more fruitful and honest conversation with students from all across the globe – which brings me to the next point.
- Diverse Student Attendance – Because online courses can be completed from anywhere with an Internet connection, these courses are seeing a much more diverse enrollment than traditional courses. We’re talking students from Melbourne, London, and New York – all in the same course. This is such a great opportunity to network and learn from others’ experiences. I can personally say that some of my best event management tips have come from event planners from all across the globe.
The Cons of Online Event Management Courses:
- Financial Aid – event planning classes online don’t offer traditional financial assistance, but many offer payment plan options.
- Self-Discipline – Though flexibility is very appealing to many students, as with any online course, online event management courses require self-discipline. The majority of these courses have open deadlines, meaning you can complete the work at your own pace (pro or con?!). For some, this may cause a sense of procrastination, however, there are a few popular online courses, such as Event Business Academy, that offers mentorship and accountability to curb this struggle.
The Pros of On-Campus Event Management Courses:
- Auditory Learning Environment– Though a vast majority of students prefer to learn material at their own pace and with their own techniques, some students still prefer the traditional method of learning – sitting at a desk taking notes while an instructor lectures about the material. Because this method is a mold and offers very little customization, traditional courses are struggling to compete against the flexibility and customization of online courses.
The Cons of On-Campus Event Management Courses:
- Commute – Though commuting is not an issue in all locations around the world, it is a rise of concern for many – especially those living in large cities. As with many courses, event management is not offered at all As such, students may have to drive farther than preferred to attend class. This often results in poor attendance and thus, poor grades. I can personally say, having to drive 30+ minutes 2-3 times a week does not sound appealing to me. If you’re questioning your commitment to attend, play it safe and find a different course, whether it’s online or at another location.
- No Flexibility – As I mentioned before, online schools offers great flexibility for schedules of all sorts. Traditional courses can be extremely difficult to fit in a busy schedule – especially if there is a significant commute. By taking an on-campus course, you are agreeing to attend class at a predetermined time. Many instructors do give credit based on attendance, so continually missing class can cause problems later on down the road.
- More Expensive – Though not always the case, typically speaking, traditional courses are more expensive than online courses. The costs vary from school to school and course to course, but if money is an issue, it may not be a bad idea to consider online courses.
Which choice you make is your choice and your choice only. However, I highly suggest you are fully aware of your learning style and the course options prior to making a decision. Online event management courses offer great flexibility and opportunities to learn from event managers all across the globe – which is why we are starting to see it become the most popular option.
If you are struggling to decide which route is best for you, I suggest you take a look at a few of the most popular online event management course options and discover your preferred learning environment. The VARK Questionnaire is a great 12-question assessment that will give you some insight on your best learning environment.
I would love to hear from you in the comments below.
Have you taken any event management courses? Which do you prefer, online or on-campus? Why?