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Accelerated Distance Learning

by Brad Voeller

Reviewed by Martha Robinson

Purchase details: Accelerated Distance Learning by Brad Voeller. 250 pages. $19.99. Published by Global Learning Strategies. Please support HomeschoolChristian.com by buying this program from our Christian Book Distributors link or Amazon affiliate link.

Subtitled "A new way to earn your college degree in the 21st century," Accelerated Distance Learning offers a method to earn a college degree without sitting in class for four years and at a significantly reduced cost. Brad Voeller, a young man who was homeschooled from age four, shares how he earned his "four-year, fully accredited college degree in less than six months for less than $5,000."

Mr. Voeller begins with a motivational discussion of the requirements of learning in today's world. One must accept responsibility for his own learning and become a lifelong learner using technology and experience as tools. The author outlines the pitfalls that many students and adults find during the education process. He ends this section with encouraging words to help in the readers drive towards success.

In the distance learning section of the book, Mr. Voeller describes the many ways to get credit for knowledge that you already have. He provides excellent information about a number of tests, beyond the well-known CLEP, that allow a student to receive college credit, and also details the writing of a portfolio that allows credit to be awarded for "life experience."

The next section, Accelerated Learning, offers tools to help in increasing the speed and efficiency at which one learns. Memorization, speed-reading, writing, and test taking skills are the focus of these helpful chapters.

Mr. Voeller covers many of the details in the following section, "Putting It All Together." Using case studies of real students to emphasize his points, he discusses ways to find the best college for you, getting organized, finding funding, and making a plan of attack for course study. In his final essay, Mr. Voeller offers more encouraging words and invites students to share tips and ideas for future editions of the book.

The appendix includes a glossary of terms, a comprehensive list of "credit-by-examination" programs, samples of degrees and courses available via correspondence or on-line, worksheets to help plan a course of study, and Internet resources.

"Accelerated Distance Learning for Home School Students" -- Brad Voeller has written a series of special reports on how his accelerated distance learning plan applies to particular groups. The special report for home schoolers offers some slightly more in-depth case studies of students and details the opinions of their parents. Mr. Voeller includes the reasons that parents who have shielded their children from public school ship them off to college at 18, and then enumerates the reasons to consider accelerated distance learning as an alternative. He provides a helpful checklist of personality traits needed to succeed and a list of possible distance colleges. His discussion of the strategies for accelerated distance study (high school/college simultaneously, beginning college at 18 after high school, waiting till later for college) is excellent food-for-thought.

Recommendation: Brad Voeller's method is absolutely tailor-made for families with a homeschooling lifestyle. I strongly recommend this book for all families who aspire to having their children get a college degree. The methodology described will allow the continuation of the flexibility to which homeschooling families have become accustomed and will let the family avoid the financial and social drawbacks that traditional campuses may have. Receiving a degree using "accelerated distance learning" will allow the student to move on to higher degrees if desired or simply to move on to life. College at home is a terrific way to go!

Implementation of this method is feasible and affordable. Both the memorization and speed reading programs suggested are available in my public library. Andrew Pudewa's Advanced Communication Series is recommended to improve writing skills, and of course, if you have started with Institute for Excellence in Writing (IEW) materials, you are already ahead of the game!

If you have plans for your children to attend college, buy this book now, even if your children are young. Accelerated Distance Learning will provide you with valuable insight for planning, and perhaps you might decide to get a degree too!

HomeschoolChristian.com resources related to this review:

HomeschoolChristian.com's Homeschooling High School Section
HomeschoolChristian.com's Beyond High Schoool
Review of Advanced Communication Series by Andrew Pudewa
Review of Teaching Writing: Structure and Style by Andrew Pudewa

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