If you go with online courses, make sure they don't enforce minimum # days per course. The one I took wouldn't let me take the final exam for each course until 18 days had ellapsed since I started the course. And I had to take 3 courses in order (not at the same time), so even if I finished all the reading and quizzes in 5 days, I'd need to wait 13 more days before completing the course and moving on to the next.
I didn't use any exam prep and passed my first time. I took the classes then registered for my exam a month later. What I did do was go to youtube and watch/listen to Kevin Ward's RE Principles and practice classes.
Like mentioned before you will most likely not get licensed by January as they are slow. If you get all your paperwork and fingerprinting done before hand it will speed up the process but still take about a month once you pass the exam.... more
Online is easier to handle--do at your own time, on your own schedule. But nothing compares to the classroom experience! You learn so much more in person, and interacting with other students and the teacher, asking questions is just so much better.... more