Online Degree Programs
Online degree programs can, if you have the academic credentials, pad your income in the form of thousands of dollars of cash each month, and could very well ease the financial pain of having to choose between food and fuel in these parlous economic times; I would be overjoyed to tell you it would be as easy as turning on your computer and logging in to an online classroom to start the money train.
Sadly, I simply don’t have an easy answer to the question of how to obtain extra income from online teaching. My experience is that there are no quick paths to being an online professor. It will often take a year or more to even receive a response to your application to a school that offers online courses. Further, you will be required in almost every case to spend four to six weeks of your time without pay training to teach for each school.
Even after you successfully complete the training, for which you will not be paid a dime, you will have no guarantee that you will be offered a class.
Teaching for Online Degree Programs is Difficult
It is not a matter of just asking for the work and hauling in the cash. It is hard work that requires you to put in many extra hours after you have already put in a full day at the office. In many cases, schools that offer online classes require you to answer student emails and telephone calls every day. Of course, there is also the matter of mind-numbing administrative tasks, such as filling out spreadsheets containing information about student attendance.
Overall, online teaching is hard work that will consume your free time and tie you to a chair in front of a computer.
Don’t make the mistake that many have made and assume that online adjunct faculty positions are easy to find, or that the life of an online adjunct instructor is about dancing and drinking. By and large, the schools that offer online courses view online adjunct instructors as disposable labor, and that attitude leads to indifference on the part of academic management, which leads to a rough road for those seeking extra income from online teaching
Online Degree Programs Produce Razor-Thin Incomes
I have taught online for over three years. During that time, I have discovered that online teaching is professionally fulfilling and personally enjoyable, and I have discovered that extra income from online teaching is actually pretty thin in terms of purchasing power. I look at money from the view point of purchasing power. I am always wary of inflation. My experience is that online schools do not award raises to their online adjunct instructors, while ever increasing the number of students in the classroom.
I do not want to discourage you from seeking ways to earn extra online income, but I also do not want to give you the impression that you will soon be drinking fancy cocktails poolside while the money flows into your bank account as a result of having an online faculty position.
Not to put too fine a point on my thesis, but being an online adjunct instructor in online degree programs is about working very hard to learn time management skills in order to bring in extra income from online teaching.