Am I crazy? Online course load questions?

I am taking 18 credits for Health Information Management to become a Medical Records and Health Information Technician. I also plan to take the RHIT.

I have a full time(40 hours) job,but thankfully it’s very laid back.

I start classes on the 24th fully online.

I want to be done in a year so I took on a full course load.
I plan to do that for every semester except the summer term. I will only try to take two four credit hour courses for that.

Here are the courses I am enrolled in. 18 hours exact.

I brought all my books already, and will be studying all of them until class starts on the 24th. Can’t hurt to have a two week leg up of studying after all.

Computers in Healthcare (3)
Health Information Processes (4) Class and Case Studies
Medical Terminology (3)
Legal and Ethical Issues in Healthcare 3
Health Statistics (2) I peaked through the book and it’s freaking math. I LOATHE math with a passion of suns.
I have NEVER been good in it no matter how much I study. We are allowed a C to pass and this might be the class that gets that.
Quality Improvement in Healthcare (2)
A prerequisite for Anatomy and Physiology (1)

However, apparently that last class is only one month long and starts in December. Which is good because my final exams for all the other courses are the first week of December.

I’ve taken college level AP before,but couldn’t have my AP knocked off because its was only 3 hours, and the course for this program is six hours(class and a lab) which I plan to take next semester.

So that AP prereg will be the lone class I will have for that month which means more studying time since I will only have one focus.

I also have a BA degree(journalism) already. So I’m very familiar with college loads. However, when I did my BA I didn’t work so I had oddoles of time for studying,and also all my classes were brick and mortar except for two(library science and a foreign language).
Furthermore I didn’t have to do any heavy science or math level courses except the typical ones we all do for generals.

Now I have a job and it’s from 8:00 to 4:30. So I only have evenings and weekends to study.

I also do have some medical knowledge. It’s from a a LPN program that I eventually dropped. I didn’t like direct patient care. I also was able to thankfully have Pharmacology(freaking hated this class but still etched out a B in it) knocked off because it.

Basically are the above classes doable with a 18 hour course load, and a 40 hour full time job?

This is going to be a triple amount of work. After work, you might be tired and want to take a nap. After that is already 6 or 7 and depending on if you have to make dinner that will take more time out of your studying. Why the big rush? Why not take 12 or even 14 credits? But 18 credits with 40 hours full-time job is a death sentence. Your body needs to rest YOU ARE NOT A MACHINE. I would suggest reevaluating your schedule and see which courses are only taught in the Fall.


The rush is that my BA degree didn’t get me anything but dead ends jobs so now I want to do a field that has more stability, and the health field usually does.

The rush is I am currently living rent free with my sister who is only allowing me to stay with her while I do courses. However, she has been making grumblings that she wants me out of her home sooner than latter. That’s another reason why I want to be done with this program in a year instead of two.

The rush is if I go two years that’s more student loan burden on me on top of the student loans I already have from my BA degree.

The rush is I am a older adult, and the more years go by the more I will have to compete with barely 20 years olds. Age discrimination when hiring is not a myth.

Is 18 hours really that bad when the courses are online?

Don’t online courses usually pride themselves on being self-paced. I am also a stronger studier by myself(introvert) anyway which online courses usually allow.

Also doesn’t work load matter more than credit hour?

Say if someone was taking calculus and engineering courses in their 18 hours wouldn’t that be more rigorous to do then say someone taking a biology class and a english class in their 18?

That’s why I asked would the below classes in particular be double for 18 hours?

They are all community college courses and all of them are 100 level except for Statistics(200 level) and Quality Improvement in Healthcare(200 level).

Computers in Healthcare (3)
Health Information Processes (4) Class and Case Studies
Medical Terminology (3)
Legal and Ethical Issues in Healthcare 3
Health Statistics (2) I peaked through the book and it’s freaking math. I LOATHE math with a passion of suns.
I have NEVER been good in it no matter how much I study. We are allowed a C to pass and this might be the class that gets that.
Quality Improvement in Healthcare (2)
A prerequisite for Anatomy and Physiology (1)

My work week is 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. I usually get home at around 5:30.
I would immediately start studying. I would go to bed by 10:00 or 12:00 if need be.

I also have the entire weekend to study.

As for eating a sandwich takes what a minute. 5 tops.

Also I have a 30 minute break as well as 15 minute break at work. Both times I will be doing course work.

Also where I work( a university) allows three hours to study during work hours for employees. It’s part of their tuition reimbursement program. I will be asking in detail on that tomorrow.

Since you’re working full-time can you pay your sister some rent? Or look for an apartment with roommates? Then you could complete the program in the 2 years that’s suggested in the curriculum instead of trying to cram it into just one.


A good bit of my pay is going toward student fees, loans, and textbooks for each semester so I won’t have to pay back as much.

Also not having to worry about rent, utility bills, etc is godsend for saving to pay for the above and to have something to live on when I do decide to move out.

However,I just looked at the syllabus for each class and I’m getting worried.

I thought online classes were supposed to accommodate working people or people with children,but the syllabus looks like it’s for regular brick and mortar college students with a lot of time on their hands to study.

Since when do you have to do paper and oral exams in classes that aren’t English or Speech?

Those requirements worry me the most especially since I have to work 40 hours.

I wanted to study on my own, log on to say I’m present, and take a multiple choice test and be done.

These are all community college courses and all are at the 100 level except quality improvement(200) and statistics(200).

Computers in Healthcare (3) The Prof wants written or oral reports and written unit exams.

Health Information Processes (4) Class and Case Studies The prof wants assignments, quizzes, and participation.

Medical Terminology(3) The professor wants written exams, oral exams, quizzes, written assignments,participation

Legal and Ethical Issues in Healthcare(3) The professor wants assignments, quizzes, exams, final exams, reports, written presentations, participation

Health Statistics (2) The professor wants participation,three exams, four papers, classroom assignments, quizzes. This one especially bothers me because its math, and I’m not good in that subject at all.

Quality Improvement in Healthcare(2) The professor wants assignments, exams, reports on outside reading assignments/projects

A prerequisite for Anatomy and Physiology (1) The professor wants Exams/Quizzes, Activities. However this course doesn’t start until December, when all the other six classes are done.

18 hours of credits are 18 hours of credits. Being online does not magically make it less of a time or brain commitment. I did my second MS online, and found that I spent more time on classwork in that context than I had in a live one. Now I teach at a community college, and we have been online since mid-March. My students are spending at least as much time on their studies in the online format.

Even a 12 credit full load would be tough with a 40 hour a week job. 18 credits is nearly suicidal. Give yourself permission to take it slow for the first semester, then ratchet things up as you find you are able.

I totally get it that you hate your current dead-end job, but the difference between finishing in a year or in a year plus a semester isn’t likely to make that big of a difference in your hireability, while it could make a really big difference in your ability to get through the classes well.

I AM seriously thinking about just taking 13 credits. That’s only 5 classes. Really 4 since the 5th class is a month long pre reg that is taken by itself(in Dec) and AFTER I’m done with my other courses. So I’ll have all the time to study that one course.

However, I am also thinking about just going on ahead with my current schedule and just dropping before the dead line if it gets to much. A W does nothing to my GPA after all.

This way I can know for sure if I can truly handle 18 hours with a 40 hour job.

Also people have jobs and do huge course loads all the time and pass. Why can’t I be one of those people to?

Also how is this load any different from high school? We had that many classes for 8 hours like a job and then had to go home and study all of it. Even when I got my BA at university this was the same. Long hours in class then go home to study. Just like a job.

As a former Community college (CC) student I thought the same but CC prepare me academically and my experience I learned from CC I still use to this day. I started Fall 2014 then transfer to SUNY Albany and now I’m two semesters away from graduating.

When I see your schedule I just don’t see how you can study three subjects per day and do two hours. Two hours is how much you should spend on.

Online classes do accommodate people who work and/or have children. They can take the classes from home instead of going to a campus. That doesn’t mean easier or less work.

You didn’t have a 40 hour per week job when you were in high school. It’s not impossible to do. A lot of people have done it. But I doubt they were students who thought learning involved reading a book and taking a multiple choice test. Really look at the syllabi to understand all that’s expected then figure out what you can reasonably do.

“I wanted to study on my own, log on to say I’m present, and take a multiple choice test and be done.”

That isn’t a college course taught online. That’s prepping on your own for a credit-by-exam option like CLEP.

Yes, you will need to cover the same content as would be covered in a face-to-face class. You will probably need to submit the very same assignments and take the very same quizzes and exams as students in a face-to-face section of the class would. The differences will be that if there is a lecture, you will watch a recorded version instead of sitting in class, and you will be able to choose the time of day and the number of times that you watch it.

Have you spoken with the human resources office at the university where you are working? They may be able to guide to good career counseling. I am concerned that you have come up with this plan on your own without any outside help. There might even be classes you could take for free at the university where you are working that would get you a better job.

I have completed college before with a BA.

I have also taken 18 hours in pursuit of it as well, and passed all first try.

I took a very hard test( that I thought I failed until I got the letter in the mail) for a LPN class( 1 of 20 only allowed in). I also took the hard Asvab for the Navy. However, I unfortunately couldn’t pass their swim qual so I was separated 30 days after my division graduated.

Basically by this point I’m pretty sure what I’m capable of, and don’t need a career center. Besides THIS is what I want to do for career.

All I wanted was to get a better handle on if 17 hours and a 40 hour work week would be to ambitious based on the courses and syllabus I noted above, and even WITH the concessions.

That I will study and do course work when I get home at 5:30 till 10 or midnight if I must, and that I have the entire weekend free as well.

Plus I’ve asked about the 3 hours per week part to study during work, and am just waiting on an answer. However, even if I’m turned down for the 3 hours the rest still stands. I also have a lot of leave, and if I must use that sometimes I will.

Also this 18 hours is only for THIS semester because they look like what I call soft courses. A lot of reading and writing, and not a whole lot of complex thinking. Basically courses I can just get on out the way so I can focus on more complex thinking ones next semester.

The statistics one does bother me though since its math, and therefore it’s a course I’ll have to study a little longer on.

I’m taking a more reasonable 14 for the next semester because even I’m not crazy enough to take Anatomy and Physiology(6 credits), Pathophysiology(4 credits), and
ICD-10-CM/PCS Coding(4 credits) combined with more courses.

As for the university( only six credits are paid per semester) I was going to take them up on that offer until I saw that the almost thousand dollars fees would have had to come out of my pocket, and that the tuition per semester,even with those six hours paid for free, was still about to hit the double digits.

The degree I was going to get through them was a Masters in Library Science. The course is accredited by the American Library Association, and is also completely online. It fit my introverted(INTJ) nature and love for books, research, and writing perfectly.

However, the biggest reason I went on ahead and turned that road down,and then set my sights on a community college and this health degree, is because this virus has shown me more than ever that as far as money and job security is concerned working in the humanities is not wise. So health field it is.

Honestly, just looking at their skill set a Medical Technician just looks like the equivalent of a librarian anyway,but just for the more robust medical field.