Q&A: Technology at Online Graduate Schools

A: These schools are generally ahead of the curve relative to the rest of the education industry. Online learning is inherently dynamic and forward-looking, leveraging technology to increase the ability of educators to share knowledge.

In terms of specifics, many schools offer classrooms within Adobe Connect, which features excellent chat and poll functionalities. A lot of schools also use Blackboard to foster dialogue between students and teachers, while also leveraging social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. Many classes can now also be taken on smart phones.

That said, some online schools are, ironically, behind the times when it comes to technology. Although these schools may have yet to implement the latest learning applications, the use of more simple gadgets are readily prevalent. For example, podcasts are merely recordings of lectures and lessons administered by the class instructor. This modest tool, however, can be used as a formidable complement when reviewing class notes and preparing for exams.

In extreme cases where technology is notably insufficient, turn your focus toward the quality of the instruction. Browse, investigate and scrutinize the reviews of schools and facilitators to find the most suitable program for your needs. Also make sure to check out our school report cards, where we ask schools what types of technology they incorporate into their curriculum.