Nearly half of all MU students took an online class during the 2016-17 school year, according to the university’s website.

They are popular for a variety of reasons. Some students like to free up their daily schedule for work or other activities, while others like the convenience of pacing their work around other deadlines and busy times during the semester. Online classes can even help students graduate faster.

There are multiple options when it comes to online classes. Self-paced classes allow students to finish the class within a time period between six weeks and six months.

Semester-based classes have set due dates for assignments and exams. They might also have group work and discussion boards with all students enrolled in the class.

Online classes can be a great resource to a busy college student, but misperceptions about them can cause confusion. Successfully completing an online class demands strong study habits and good time management skills.

Myth 1: Online classes are easier

Not necessarily. Most of the time, the material covered in the online class is the same as the material covered in the on-campus class. Online classes require self-discipline to keep up with the deadlines and keep pace to finish the class.

Myth 2: You can finish an online class faster

Yes, but most self-paced online classes require at least six weeks to learn the material and take any required exams. Other classes are semester-based and cannot be taken any quicker.

Myth 3: Online classes have no exams

Not true. There are exams with online classes, and most of them require a proctor. Exams can be taken at the Mizzou Online offices or at home with an approved proctor.

Myth 4: Online classes are cheaper

Tuition and course fees are exactly the same as for on-campus classes.

Myth 5: You don’t have to buy textbooks

The instructor decides whether textbooks are required for an online class.

For more information about online classes, contact Mizzou Online in 136 Clark Hall at 573-882-2491 or at

  • Former Staff Photographer and Photo Editor. Find me on Twitter and Instagram at @AllisonPCollins

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