Reasons For High Dropout In Online Courses & How To Fix Them

Reasons For High Dropout In Online Courses & How To Fix Them

Posted By: charleybrown Posted On 30 Jul 2019

Online education is fast becoming a regular part of the college and university world. Because of its flexibility, many people opt for online programs, as they allow them to juggle a work-life balance. Despite the popularity and efficacy of online platforms, the rate of dropout in online courses is getting alarming. For students and educators alike, this is a huge problem.

What are the underlying reasons behind this dropout rate? Are students wallowing in confusion or frustration? Here are some major reasons  for the dropout in online courses:

Confused Students


Confusing Courses

If there is a general assumption that everyone who goes to college is from the ‘same’ academic or social-cultural background, then there is already an issue. What if these learners are simply not ready to shoulder the responsibilities that come with college, because of difficult prior experiences?

If the challenges they meet exceed the expectations, there is a good chance they will drop out. Not all beginners have the same background, and colleges need to prepare for that. Before enrolling in classes, students should take a careful look at all the requirements and the deadlines involved, that way they don’t get in over their head.

Impractical Expectations

Impractical Expectations

Quite a number of us know what it’s like to quit during a job because of the sudden revelation that the work is overwhelming. Many online students drop out because they are simply unprepared.

Online courses are marketed as being relatively easy and super flexible, and that creates a mindset for students in which they think they can get by doing the absolute minimum. This is a problem.

Online students should be told from the get-go that the advertised flexibility of online classes simply means that the responsibility to do the work is entirely on themselves. 

Lack of Communication From Instructors

Online classes are obviously structured differently from regular campus classes. Interactions don’t happen face to face; they happen via webcam or via discussion forums. That means you can’t get answers the minute you need them.

Frequent communication between students and professors fosters a sense of confidence and safety. The lack of communication can encourage the opposite feelings. 

Students have to be proactive about reaching out to their professors in online classes if they want to maintain a strong dialogue. This is the only way to get help during the class if they fall behind or become confused. 

Poorly Paced Schedule

Some topics are more complex than others, which means that the time allotted to each assignment has to be different. Scheduling has to happen on a case-by-case basis, otherwise, it is meaningless. Students can reach out to their professors and ask where they think the majority of their time should be spent. Is it on-topic A or topic B? Find out early.

If you start to fall behind, one way to overcome the issue is by working with students on the discussion forums. Ask what they’re working on and if they can help you get up to speed. 



Dropout Rate

All these reasons and more are why online students drop out of their classes. The good news is that there are ways of overcoming these issues like considering class help options like; take my online course. Students are willing to look for help and develop the willpower to succeed. Proper organizing, scheduling, communication, and other positive behaviors can lead to successful semesters.