There has been an increasing trend of people being able to go back to school for advancement or career changes. Many of these people are older and already have families of their own. Distance learning has made it possible for the select few to be able to go back to school while still being able to work and take care of their families. Depending on their level of outside responsibility people tend to work part time which is 10 to 34 hours a week, or full time which is 35 to 40 hours a week.
Distance learning is different from the traditional classroom experience. One major difference is the amount of time that needs to be put into your work due to not having that classroom time.
This often gets hard to juggle when dealing with real world issues like work and families and still trying to maintain an above average GPA. Working more hours means that you cannot log on to your lessons as often and put as much effort into your learning opposed to someone who doesn’t work or only works a little amount of time each week.
Research has shown that the least amount of hours worked allows for a student to achieve a higher GPA and overall performance. Some of the issues raised in the literature concern matters such as the number of hours worked, whether or not the students’ jobs pertain to their majors, and the students’ workloads. As more students are employed, they face having to balance their academic requirements, extracurricular activities, and employment responsibilities to maintain their lifestyles (Furr & Elling, 2000).
One of the articles obtained show students being able to excel while only working 10 to 19 hours a week. This study shows college students maintaining a part time job and still having time to study and do research for full time classes. They created a survey of undergraduate students to help identify their class satisfaction and the amount of hours worked. They found that students working not too much or too little have enough motivation for academic achievements and higher GPA. We suggest that the increase in performance is due to an optimal work-college balance that establishes structure and discipline not achieved by working too few or too many hours, (Dundes, L., & Marx, J, 2006).
Work life balance is most important for distance learning due to making sure to log on and participate in discussion activities and work the needed hours for your family needs. A questionnaire survey of 250 undergraduate students at McDaniel College was used to determine the correlation between work and GPA. This study creates some advantages because it uses the same types of questionnaire that would be conducive for the new research. the study also shows the correlation to the chosen research with minor limitations and disadvantages. Two of these are the assigned group of undergraduate students instead of graduate, and using traditional classroom experiences rather then online learning. According to Furr and Elling (2000), 29% of the students working 20-29 hours per week and 39% of those students working full time indicated that work had a negative and frequent impact on their academic progress.
Not all of the research has shown a negative impact of GPA with increased work-life. Some show that people who work more have enough momentum to work harder in school and push for more. A number of researchers, for example, found that hard work built stronger academic character because it taught the students time management skills, gave them experience outside of the classroom, and provided them with more satisfaction in college (Pennington, Zvonkovic, & Wilson, 1989).
Some research suggests that the type of work a student does helps the determine the type of GPA they will have this is not dependent on the amount of hours worked instead on the intensity of the job. The article Work School Conflicts and health Outcomes describes how a student working in a labor intensive field such as carpentry or plumbing while taking classes would have a harder time with performance opposed to a student working a desk job doing basic data entry. Using 2-wave data from a sample of 216 student workers, this study examined work–school conflict as a predictor of psychological and physical health among working college students, (Park, Y., & Sprung, J. M. (2013).
Advantages of this article show the effects of the body when trying to preform at a higher level. The limitations are not showing the effects of hours working and how the GPA is affected. This article goes more in depth because it determines the type of work as well as the amount of hours in order to assess GPA. National Assessment of Economic Education Survey data, analyzes grade point average, verbal and mathematics SAT scores, Test of Economic Literacy (TEL) scores, and other variables to show how number of hours of employment affects student performance. Finds that students working 20 or more hours per week have lower grade point averages.