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Today there are many education opportunities for students willing to pursue higher education courses. This is because many learning programs have been introduced in the education systems of many countries. For instance, internet degree programs have enabled students to learn more easily without necessarily coming into contact with their instructors. The varied opportunities available for higher learning have posed a dilemma to many students. For example, some students have found it difficult to come up with better decisions on how to approach their tertiary educations needs. For instance, some students prefer seeking direct university admission to attending college education before proceeding to university education. At present, two-year colleges are gaining much prominence, and they have registered the highest expansion in higher education sector in the USA. In my view, community colleges have the capacity to provide arrange of education needs for students willing to pursue higher education at college level before joining universities. This is because of the following reasons.
Pursuing higher education especially at the university level has remained a dream for many students who cannot meet the financial requirements for their studies. However, students who join community colleges before proceeding to universities have the chance to save a considerable amount of money. This is because the tuition charges levied in many community colleges are lower than those charged by the universities. “According to the American Association of colleges, tuition fees at public community colleges average less than half of those at public four-year colleges and about one-tenth of those at private four-year colleges”. Community colleges mostly attract students who live near the institution premises. This enables such students to reduce their logistical expenses. For example, students can commute within a short distance from their homes, while pursing their college studies. Hence, they will not require much money for their meals and accommodation. The money they save through this mode of studying can enable them to enroll for university studies without straining their financial resources. Besides this, community colleges enable students to participate in their personal businesses at home, and this makes it possible for them to earn money on part time basis. Hence, they can get money for their studies.
The graduation requirements for students can partly be fulfilled through attending community colleges. This is because good credits can be achieved at these colleges, since they have much focus on imparting concepts than doing research. Consequently, college students have the chance to improve in subjects in which they experience difficulties. Moreover, the intensive teaching of concepts at colleges prepares students adequately for future research work at university level. Unlike many university classes, community colleges usually have small classes, which have many advantages to learners. For example, small classes enhance the participation of all learners in class discussions, and this facilitates effective learning.
Selection of specific disciplines for specialization is another prevalent challenge among high school graduates. “Studies indicate that two out of three students will change their major at least once during their college career”. In this case, community colleges provide a good environment for students to explore various options available to them before they finally chose their areas of specialization. This is because students at community colleges engage in close interactions with their instructors. This enables them to seek better guidance on their subjects of specialization.
Community college courses are mostly conducted for short durations, and they are also flexible. The short duration enables a student to gain experience in the courses before he joins university. Some courses also allow students to slightly deviate from their subject majors. For instance, instead of six economics units in a particular semester, a student can be allowed to squeeze in one or two units from a related course.
Students who fail to obtain good grades in some subjects in high school can bridge them by attending a community college. Community colleges pursue a flexible admission policy, which do not take into consideration a student’s past academic achievements. However, this is not the case in four year colleges, which lock out many students that fail to satisfy their admission. Therefore, a student can upgrade his academic records at a community college in order to satisfy the grades needed for a university admission. It also demonstrates that a student takes his education seriously.
University life may prove difficult y to young students who join them directly. This is because the nature of socialization at the university may make some students succumb to peer pressure and engage in risk behavior. On the other hand, community colleges enable students to remain in touch with their parents and guardians, and this encourages them to lead a better life. In this case, community colleges prepare students psychologically for more advanced life and education experiences that they will finally encounter at the university.
From the above discussion it is evident that community colleges provide varied opportunities to learners. This is because they are cost effective, and they also enable students to gather enough knowledge in various disciplines before they specialize in a given field. Direct university admission is also good depending on how well a student is prepared to handle it. However, since many students fail to meet their admission requirements, it is therefore advisable for them to explore the community college options before they join the universities. The choice of a particular institution also depends on a student’s goals and academic competence.