In an increasingly competitive marketplace, and a workplace constantly evolving as a result of technological advancement, people serious about their careers are under pressure to ensure continuous professional development.
But although lifelong learning is an admirable commitment, most professionals struggle to balance the demands of work, family and personal growth. Distance learning through a respected institution can bridge the gap, an expert says.
Dr Ruth Mubanga, Chancellor at the University of Africa, Zambia’s leading private distance learning university, says distance learning is the ideal solution for adults who want to boost their careers, as well as those who were never able to study in the first place.
“In fields as varied as Commerce, Development, Occupational Health and Safety, Education, or the Law & Humanities, distance learning will empower you with all the necessary skills, knowledge, research methodologies and competencies to be successful in and grow your career,” she says.
In addition to being able to study from the comfort and privacy of one’s own home, distance learning is often more affordable and flexible, as well as enabling continuing enrolment so prospective students don’t have to put their ambitions on ice until the start of the following year.
Dr Mubanga says distance learning has undergone major changes in the past decade. Previously, it was quite a lonely endeavour and students often struggled in isolation.
“However we are truly on the 21st Century track with distance learning now, and many students – both men and women - actively choose distance learning over contact education,” she says.
“A strong focus on academic excellence and student support have enabled thousands upon thousands of students to make a success of this mode of learning.” But she warns prospective students that they should, before signing up, make sure they investigate their options to be certain that their institution and qualification are registered and accredited, and of high quality.
So before registering, students should check the following:
1) What are the support structures in place for students who are struggling or falling behind?
2) How quickly does the institution get back to you after a query?
3) Do they answer your questions thoroughly and clearly?
4) Is the institution registered and the qualification accredited?
“If you’ve done your homework, and if you are able to be disciplined in your planning and execution, distance learning is the ideal way to earn your next qualification, whether it be a diploma, a certificate, an under-graduate or a post-graduate degree,” Dr Mubanga says.
The University of Africa is a Private University specialising in distance learning, accredited by the Zambian Ministry of Education since 2008 to offer Degrees, Diplomas, Masters and Doctorates, as well as short courses. The University of Africa is part of the ADvTECH Group, the biggest private education provider on the African continent, which is listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange in South Africa. An active and vibrant learning institution The University of Africa has embarked on various initiatives to expand in Zambia and into other African countries.