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Studying  ·  February 3 2022

The 6 most common myths about distance learning

Myth 1: Distance learning programmes are not an academic education

This statement may or may not be true. The term distance learning is not a protected term, which is why it is used for different study programmes and continuing education programmes – whether academic or not. Basically, it is important for prospective students to find out whether the desired distance learning programme is an academic degree such as a Bachelor’s, Master’s, etc. or a non-academic offer.

In Austria, academic degrees may only be awarded by universities, universities of applied sciences or universities of teacher education. For this reason, the supporting institution and master’s degree provider for the master’s programmes offered by the eLearning Academy for Communication is the University of Applied Sciences Burgenland. Online teaching is anchored in the DNA of the UAS Burgenland and has been developed into complete online teaching programmes in the subsidiary Austrian Institute of Management (AIM). The eLearning Academy is the operational implementer of courses in the fields of communication, marketing and media.

Myth 2: In distance learning there are also attandance phases and compulsory attendance

While attendance studies at universities and universities of applied sciences have compulsory attendance and attendance phases, the great advantage of distance learning is that you can study where and when you want. Or is that not the case?

No. Many distance learning providers advertise their programmes as distance learning, but often students still have to attend certain attendance units. This ranges from attendance blocks or seminars to exams that require physical presence. Also, the start and end of the programme cannot always be planned individually, but are tied to certain dates and times.

So if you are interested in a distance learning programme that you can actually complete from the beach in Thailand, the mountains of Tyrol or from the African rainforests, make sure when choosing a study provider that it is offered 100% online. Only in this way can your studies offer you the greatest possible flexibility.

At the eLearning Academy for Communication, you can be confident that you can complete your studies 100% online. With us, there are no attendance requirements, presence units or fixed examination dates. You can plan your distance learning as individually as possible, set your own deadlines and schedule your own exams. It is important to us to take into account and support the needs of people who are on the move in the modern working world, who do not have too much time, but who are motivated to get ahead in their careers.

Myth 3: In distance learning, I have no contact with other students and there is no network

An absolute myth. Of course, unlike in face-to-face studies, there are no joint lectures or group work that promotes contact with other students. You also have to do without parties, joint visits to the refectory or chatting in the corridor of the campus. However, this does not mean that you have to be a completely isolated lone wolf.

On the contrary: a distance learning programme offers the opportunity to build a broader, more international network. On the one hand, through students from all over the world, on the other hand, online teaching enables the distance learning provider to employ international lecturers. In addition to the online campus with forums for communication, distance learning students also make contacts for direct exchange via Facebook, LinkedIn, WhatsApp and Co.

At the eLearning Academy you will meet students from over 12 countries and international lecturers with a lot of practical experience. Our lecturers are always available to answer your questions about course content, examinations or module work by e-mail, forum or via video conference. Our Online-Campus offers the opportunity to exchange information and get in touch with other students and lecturers in forums. In addition, our students regularly exchange information on assignments, module work, etc. in a Facebook and WhatsApp group and organise online get-togethers with lecturers.

Myth 4: In distance learning, I’m on my own, ther is no one I can ask

Independent work, independent planning, organisation and sufficient discipline are of course essential for distance learning. No one sits next to you and encourages you to learn. You have to bring this motivation with you on your own. Nevertheless, many distance learning providers have study advisors who accompany you from the beginning to the end. They support you with technical problems and questions about your studies and help you realise your goals.

In the case of the eLearning Academy, our Head of Prospective Student Counselling and Student Advisory, Anria Brandstätter, looks after you personally. She is available to advise you on organisational, technical or personal questions and always has an open ear for your concerns. Depending on your wishes and needs, she will develop individual learning and milestone plans with you, help you network with other students or lecturers and be your personal motivator before your Master’s examination.

Myth 5: Distance learning focuses on theory, practical knowledge is secondary

A misconception. The aim of a degree programme is to provide scientifically based vocational training. On the basis of this, an educational institution, in the case of a degree programme a (technical) college or university, must ensure that it is a practice-based education at university level, which aims to impart the ability to solve the tasks of the respective occupational field according to the state of science and the current and future requirements of practice (see in this regard the Universities Act 2002, the Universities of Applied Sciences Studies Act 1993 as well as the Higher Education Act 2005).

Dual courses: Work and study

Distance learning courses are often offered as dual studies. The student does not have to decide whether to work or study, but can do both at the same time. On the one hand, this offers more flexibility, but on the other hand, it is more practical. You combine your everyday work with academic training and further education and can thus apply and implement the knowledge you have learned directly in practice. Often, employees who continue their education in order to build up more know-how are supported by their employer and often even part of the tuition fees are paid.

At the eLearning Academy, you study part-time with international module leaders from the field. We combine solid basic knowledge with current applications and transform your knowledge into practice-relevant competence. Stupid memorisation and learning bulimia – where you absorb knowledge into your short-term memory, repeat it and then forget it straight away – do not exist with us. Our examination system is sophisticated and well thought out. We strive to make the completion of the individual modules as well as the entire Master’s programme as stress-free and practice-oriented as possible for you. In addition to regular self-tests – to check what you have read/learned – a practice-relevant module paper or case work awaits you in each module.

But read for yourself what students of the eLearning Academy say about their studies and the proximity to practice:

Portrait Andreas Sagmeister Student der eLearning-Academy

“I was able to compare a lot of the content from the event module directly with my practical experience, which is of course a great advantage. I also found it exciting to learn the theoretical constructs behind events. So, why do events exist at all and what do they have to do in the marketing mix. Because I come from the video field, I was able to go through the module ‘Text and Visualisation’ much faster than ‘newcomers’ in the field probably can. That is precisely why I find the concept of the study programme so good. If I want to know more, I simply stay longer, if I already know the contents, then I can complete the sections faster. This makes me much more independent and the programme adapts to me with maximum flexibility. I would therefore give new students the tip: Concentrate on what interests you and get the best out of it!”, says Andreas Sagmeister – Post Production Professional at Red Bull Mediahouse and student in our Master’s programme.

Portrait Helga Vogg

“I was a trainee at OMV and for many years I had it in mind to catch up on my school-leaving exams. For private reasons, however, my desire for further education had to take a back seat for the time being. My work, on the other hand, was always a welcome and important distraction during this challenging time. That’s why I decided to take my Matura later than planned. When I took over the new department in 2016, I knew I wanted to get support. So I needed the course directly for my work and can now say that it really is perfectly tailored to my field of work. The modules complement what I experience every day in my work processes and in the group’s everyday life and help me immensely.”,  Helga Vogg – Communciation Manager at OMV AG – says about her Master’s degree at the eLearning Academy.

Myth 6: You can only do a Master’s degree with a Matura/Abitur/High School Diploma or a previous Bachelor’s degree

The usual educational path is: Matura/Abitur/High School Diploma – Bachelor’s degree – Master’s degree. However, there are also alternatives to the classic educational path. For example, you can be admitted to a Master’s programme without having completed a Matura/Abitur/High School Diploma or a previous Bachelor’s programme. It is best to find out about the possibilities and admission requirements from the respective provider.

In our case, you can be admitted to a master’s programme at UAS Burgenland at the eLearning Academy under the following conditions:

  • You have an internationally recognised domestic or foreign academic degree from a higher education institution (at least equivalent to a Bachelor’s degree).
  • an equivalent qualification to be determined by the course management (1) based on:
    Abitur/Matura/High School Diploma and at least five years of professional experience
  • Completion of an expert course/diploma course (e.g. university course, course for further education of a university of applied sciences or course of university character) of at least 60 ECTS and at least three years of professional experience
  • Completion of a standardised written entrance examination, at least five years of professional experience and a minimum age of 21 years.
(1) Assessment based on the descriptors describing level 6 of the European Qualifications Framework (EQF)

Are you interested in distance learning in the field of marketing communication? Do you want to study 100% online with the highest possible flexibility – without attendance units, compulsory attendance or fixed examination dates? Then you have come to the right place. Our master’s degree programmes at UAS Burgenland are time and location-independent and individually tailored to your needs. Find out more in our free and non-binding info webinar:

Register now for next info-event

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