South African student appreciates the flexibility of distance learning

After completing his bachelor's degree in graphic design in 2010 and working in the field, Hannes Visagie accepted a position at the North-West University (NWU) in South Africa as a multimedia designer for NWU’s Centre for Teaching and Learning in 2014. 

Hannes Visagie, Master of Education in Learning, Design & Technology, Instructional Design & DevelopmentNWU provided Visagie the opportunity to attend the University of Georgia, which he could not resist. “The faculty at UGA is nationally and internationally recognized for their expertise and quality programs,” Visagie said. He chose to further his education through the Mary Frances Early College of Education’s online learning, design, and technology program

With a master’s degree, Visagie believes that he will become a better instructional designer and make a difference with every project he works on. 

As a South African resident and working professional, the online platform was a logical way for Visagie to attend UGA. “This is one of the significant advantages of online teaching and learning,” he said. “Distance becomes less of a factor for such possibilities.”

Visagie describes his experience with the program as eye-opening in that he finds the possibilities for engagement to be diverse. “I appreciate how the instructors manage to keep the experience personal and engaging,” he said. “I value how the well-planned and well-structured courses aid in your learning experience and the construction of new knowledge.”

For anyone interested in this program, Visagie recommends having self-discipline, practicing time management, and maintaining constant engagement with your peers and instructors when needed. 

“Online courses are not less work and definitely not easier to complete than traditional face-to-face courses,” Visagie said. “Online courses require a lot of preparation, but it is rewarding and allows you to participate constructively during the sessions.”

According to Visagie, the program has broadened his perspective of the design field. “The knowledge gained from the courses opened doors to other interests for me that I never knew I would have,” he said. “I discovered another passion through the modules that I have taken and I look forward to what's to come.”