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What is Online Learning? – Your Complete Guide


“Online learning is rapidly becoming one of the most cost-effective ways to educate the world’s rapidly expanding workforce.” – Jack Messman.

Online Learning is a great way to improve your skills and knowledge without the hassle of commuting every day. It’s also an affordable alternative for those who can’t afford traditional classroom education. But online courses are not equal in quality, so how do you know which one will be right for you? This guide has all the information you need to make an informed decision about online learning.

Techopedia lists online education as: “the teaching and learning taking place in online settings, including open courseware (OCW), online degree programs and online training courses.”

So what is online Learning? You can think of online learning as a form of instruction where the interaction between you and your instructor occurs electronically instead of in a physical classroom.

What online Learning isn’t

Many people have the mistaken belief that online education is just taking courses online, which can be completed from home while sitting on the couch with your laptop and watching old episodes of Seinfeld. In reality, online Learning has changed dramatically over time to become an interactive experience where students participate in several activities other than coursework, such as group projects or tests. And although you may not need to wear pants for these classes (unless it’s one of those mandatory formal-wear type schools), most colleges require proof that you attended a course. This can be through participation like discussion posts or quizzes; this also means attending college online usually comes at a higher cost.

When was online Learning found?

Since the 1950s, slide projectors and television-based classrooms have been in use. However, one of the world’s first online Learning dates from 1960 at the University of Illinois in the United States. Students began studying via computer terminals that were interconnected to establish a network, even though the internet had not yet been invented.

One of these changes is that people now have access to more educational resources than ever before, which has allowed online education programs such as MOOC (Massive Open Online Courses) or SPOC (Small Private Online Course). The latter example includes a student-instructor ratio of 12:12, where students meet weekly with an instructor but otherwise work independently on their computers; a critical aspect of this type of online Learning is that students can interact with their instructors at any time online.

Are online degree certificates worth it?

Online learning for kids

Absolutely yes, but at the same time, it varies. Some employers would love to have employees who have done their degree course in a well-known institution irrespective of online or offline. Still, online degree certificates are not accepted by every employer. When employers decide to hire online learners for a job requiring in-classroom experience, they may discriminate against online learning students because of their online degrees. But there’s no need to worry! You can still get hired if you have a certificate from one of these top-ranked schools: Harvard University, Stanford University, and Duke University, according to an article published on this past January 2015. One way around discrimination among employers is having a traditional paper copy of your online degree at hand along with other work references such as previous employees who vouch for you while applying for jobs.

What are the changes in recent online Learning?

Online learning for kids

A recent change in online education has been its affordability which has allowed many more people the opportunity of an education. And the best part is this is regardless of whether they live near an educational institution or not. It also plays a role in allowing those who are retired and no longer working to continue their studies without relocating somewhere else first. Furthermore, online courses allow individuals to stay home while attending school due to physical limitations such as being handicapped or very frail, making it challenging to participate in class on campus.

What are the pros and cons of online Learning?

Online learning for kids

The online learning environment is very flexible, allowing students to work at their own pace and according to the schedule that works best for them. This can be an advantage if you struggle with time management or have a family life outside of school. But, on the other hand, it may allow some students more leeway than they need when it comes to completing assignments by deadlines set out by professors.

What are the pros?

  • Online Learning is flexible
  • Online Learning allows students to work at their own pace and according to the best schedule.
  • It is cost-effective and user-friendly
  • It is accessible at any time and anywhere
  • Less stress
  • No more traditional long lectures
  • Immense resources from the internet
  • Wide choices of courses

What are the cons?

  • Live lectures can be helpful when someone wants a clarification but online, clearing doubts is quite hard.
  • Students who don’t understand technology will struggle to keep up
  • It can be hard to balance online classes with regular life.
  • Too many possible distractions

Final thoughts

Online learning for kids

Online Learning has many benefits but also some downsides you should consider before taking an online course. Online Learning can save you money because there are no set costs associated with attending a virtual school or college compared to traditional schools, which have recurring fees that add up over time. We hope that with our guide, you have now gathered some ideas. Have a nice day!

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