You’ve decided to pursue soldering certification classes to achieve your career goals or to meet the requirements at your current job. Now you’re reviewing your options. As you do so, one question is sure to come up: should you choose online classes or in-person training?
There’s no definitive answer to this question — what’s best for one student may not work well for another. There are also distinct benefits and drawbacks to each option.
Before you do anything else, you have a practical matter to consider.
You want to receive your technical certification. Which classes are available for you to take to achieve that goal? If all the classes in your area are offered in person, then there’s not much else to consider unless you’re willing to travel or wait.
Likewise, if the only courses you can fit into your schedule are online, that’s what you should pursue. If both options are available to you, you can turn your attention toward the more specific advantages and disadvantages of each format.
If you’ve previously done some soldering or observed other people soldering in your workplace, you may feel more confident in analyzing the work you complete as part of your coursework. In that case, you may feel comfortable taking an online course, where you won’t have an instructor providing you with direct feedback.
However, if you lack that kind of experience or exposure, it may be better for you to attend class in person. Being there will give you the opportunity to receive and implement feedback from an instructor who’s qualified to evaluate your work.
If you’re pursuing training as part of your employment, it’s a good idea to find out which format your manager prefers. They may strongly recommend an online course, or they might have a partnership with a training provider that offers in-person classes.
As you weigh your course options, remember to take cost into consideration.
Tuition costs matter, though you may be able to have them reimbursed by your employer. But that’s not all. Will you have to travel to a training center for in-person training? If so, you’ll need to factor in the cost of fuel, food, lodging, and other travel expenses.
Do you learn better in person where you can get hands-on with projects, or do you prefer the independence and self-pacing of online learning? This should be perhaps the single most important factor influencing your final decision.
After all, the important thing is not just that you obtain your certification but that you add the skills it represents to your professional arsenal.
By choosing the right education option for you, you’ll ensure that you get more out of the training you receive. That’s almost as important as the soldering certification you’ll have to take back to your employer.