New Trends towards Online Education and its benefits
With the development of networking and software technology online education also got developed over the last decade. Once we were used to choose schools only based on it physical location, quality of education and the language used as the medium of study. Even till the last decade traditional schools and classrooms were the only and the best choices for parents. But that time and the way of thinking have come across a long way. Online classes and websites now are considered as an extremely convenient alternative to the standard academic settings. The increased internet accessibility with the help of WWW's (World Wide Web) has given rise to lot of opportunities for all form and mode of education through this medium (Karber, 2003). Teaching outside classroom, easy access to class materials came into reality for teachers and students with the help of this technology boom (Sing and Beverly 2008). According to the experts online education is the second biggest change in the history of education after the printing press (Chubb and Moe 2012). This article talks about the benefits of online education for students.
There are several benefits to online education. Some are listed below:
Over the past few decades, technology improvements have promised historic changes in the content, quality and access to higher education. As a matter of fact, in this form of education students do not even need to be on the campuses of their educational institutes to know or experience their study subjects (Chubb and Moe 2012).
Accessibility is one of the most important advantages of online education as discussed by Coyner and McCann (2004). Students can have access to course materials like syllabi, assignments, study guides, the class power-point presentations, and all other additional materials seven days a week and 24 hours a day.
Irrespective of the status of the institute the teacher or the professor can reach millions of student in one single click saving time and energy for the students and those (Hammonds 2003). This format also saves a lot of resources that otherwise could have been wasted making the students more productive.
Classroom lectures most of the time are with pen and paper. Online technology allows course content to be presented in other interesting, engaging and hands-on formats including simulations, videos even games. This sort of practical training no doubt can help students learn things more easily than the traditional methods (Chubb and Moe 2012).
It is not always a good idea to assume that every student can learn the same thing in the same rate at the same time, which is an indispensable disadvantage of traditional classroom settings. Online course materials allow students move at their own pace, own time with their own learning experiences (Chubb and Moe 2012).
Online education also permits continuous assessments, individual online tutoring, sometimes customized revisions of materials otherwise poorly understood, and also gives the systemized data for student's progress. Hence, it creates a favorable atmosphere for students to learn and track their own progress as well as understand their weaknesses. Deal III (2002) suggested that online education that the frequent and timely feedback between teachers and students not only can substitute the face-to-face classroom teaching, but also is an effective mode of learning. Students get more control over their learning as they can express easily what wish to learn more through the feedback system (Sing and Beverly 2008).
There is always a form of apprehension attached to the face-to-face discussion. This apprehension factor can largely get reduced with electronic mode of communication (Deal III 2002). Online study also can exclude the stereotypical attitudes based on ethnic or cultural background. (Karber, 2003; Lyons, 2004). These are certainly more study-friendly atmosphere for students.
In online learning students have to work in groups compared to individual work, encouraging team building and group-work for fruitful results (Aune, 2002; Coyner& McCann, 2004).
Not only this, online classes of many elite class institutions extends the elite-caliber education among masses who probably would not otherwise have access to anything close.
In terms of money online sites are way more affordable as most people have their personal computers with internet connection at home. This reduces the tuition costs due to less or no use of physical classrooms (Deal III, 2002).
If efficiently and effectively managed, online education can help learners to reach their career and learning goals or to meet degree requirements. It certainly helps students to realize and develop their own learning techniques and own area of interest more easily. Online education also can go into areas where teachers have never taught before thus creating opportunities for the students.
Learning is an integral part of life. Education is mainly for two purposes among the upper classes: learning for job and learning for knowledge. Both of these learning causes are important and should not be neglected. Online learning environment is a new tool that is changing everyday. It represents a great opportunity for quality education. This new method of learning through internet represents an easy and comfortable process to gain knowledge in almost every field, starting from law and accounting, to human sciences, like psychology and sociology or history, management studies. Now-days it also is extended towards hardcore sciences.
Hence, this virtual learning probably is becoming a revolution in the education world. It has the potential to extend and expand the learning opportunities of students, even can overcome the geographic and demographic boundaries. The cost being low, the quality being better, it is required that our policymakers change the current education policies to bigger scale and put funds to facilitate online learning. The continuously improving reputation of online learning with the advantage of internet accessibility the expansion of this form of education is happening steadily. The initial skepticism is lower now than it used to be. The increasing popularity shows that that online learning can is and can as good as classroom teachings and can help students in their learning processes. In the long run you can create a career as good as the traditional systems.