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What are some advantages of online education?

Kevin Sutter

in Online Courses

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Megan Page on August 25, 2018

Answer 1: There are two types of online education: Synchronous and asynchronous. A "synchronous" online program is one in which the classes are scheduled, and eachone must enter the class at the same time. An "asynchronous" online program is one in which the classes are recorded and therefore can be seen/heard by the student in virtually any time that you want. So one of the benefits of, at least, asynchronous online education is that the student can perform at almost any time that you want. It is very convenient. . And regardless of whether the program is synchronous or asynchronous, one need not leave home to take courses. It all happens right on your computer. Assuming that a computer's webcam is not involved (so that it can be visible to the instructor), then one could even go to a class on the computer, while in the underwear... the epitome of convenient! In fact, one need not even be local to the college. One could be, literally, anywhere on the planet and still take the course online. Of course, exams may require one to go to school (or at least some of the school near the house of one), where a "proctor" may observe one of taking an exam to make sure that there is no cheating. But apart from that, one can take the entire course (or sometimes even an entire diploma or degree) completely online, in the house, sitting at the computer, maybe even in the underwear. And if the program is asynchronous, one may do when one wants to. So, the convenience, obviously, is the biggest advantage. Therefore, it is also an advantage of not having to drive or pay for other transportation to go to and come from a physical classroom. So there is a cost savings, too. It can also be an advantage for the older students, who do not want to sit in a physical classroom with a bunch of much younger students. It may not, in that sense, be a anonymity and privacy benefit. Sometimes, though rarely) on-line courses are a little less expensive than in-classroom courses... despite the fact that these savings are often offset by that there is some kind of special online fee per course, depending on the school. The Department of Education (USDE) has commissioned some studies in the past few years, almost all of which show that the learners tend to be more self-disciplined, and tend to work harder, and tend to learn more and get better grades, also, their classroom counterparts. But it is not clear whether the online course makes the student more disciplined, or if s/he needed to have already been that way before enrolling in the online study. That the online student tends to work more and learn more and get better grades, although, it is true, regardless, according to the study. The disadvantage of online education is that it is less social. If the student wants to enjoy the side benefits of meeting new friends in school, suspension out with them in the common areas, studying with them, socialize with them, etc, then an online program, it would certainly be a lack in the area. Online education is a bit of a loner type of things for the student. If the online program is a "cohort" type program, however, it may not be something at least akin to socializing in the sense that the members of the cohort tend to meet more often to study and work together on projects... ...however, even such meetings are "online" and therefore there are still no in-person contact or socialization. But in this day and age, when so many people are (sadly, probably unhealthily) substituting online socializing for in-person socializing, a series of cohort-required online meetings might be the line of the needs of the students to get their socialization fix! [smile] There are other benefits, too... like, for example, recorded online lectures may be paused, rewind, and watch/listen to it again; and even seen several times, later. With the classroom courses, students usually only have their notes to refer to. Online education is a great way to get a diploma or a degree; however, it is required that the student agrees with solitude, and disciplined enough to do the classes regularly, to keep up with the reading and the assignments, and do well on the exams. Not everyone can do that. Some people simply require the experience in the classroom. For them, online education is a non-starter. But if the student is capable of doing and really enjoy it, then online may be a perfect fit! .


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