It goes without saying that the digital landscape is ever changing. As well as making our lives easier when it comes to having access to information, connecting with old friends and content sharing, it has also revolutionized the careers and learning industry.
One of the most interesting and fast developing areas of today’s digital world is the boom in online learning. At one point, it was physical colleges and universities you would have to attend on a daily basis, moving to the city of your preferred place of study.
Now, many colleges and universities are opening and expanding their distance learning programs, catering to online students from across the world. As we get even closer to 2020, there are now more students than ever before choosing to go down the online learning route over the conventional brick-and-mortar courses.
Today, we’re looking at several reasons why this current boom in online learning is now being talked about as the way forward for our future generation:
Extensive Programs and Courses
One of the reasons that online learning has grown in popularity over the last few years is due to the extensive array of courses now available. Of course, our physical colleges and universities have also catered a diverse range of subjects, but the internet has taken it that step further with additional courses that at one point weren’t available.
This is also a global factor, where anyone in the world can join in with the growth of online learning. Do you live in Sydney and want to learn how to do coding? Take a short course in online coding and HTML. Do you live in Canada and want to pursue a career in intelligence and public safety? Look at public safety online masters programs in Canada.
However, it’s worth remembering that online courses are no less challenging than the courses studied at offline establishments. For example, when pursuing an MBA course online, an online MBA curriculum will be pretty much the same as a university’s MBA curriculum. Online learning simply opens the doors to more options, flexibility, and methods of learning, but the standards and requirements to succeed are in no sense lower.
You don’t have to move away
Even some of the courses that at one point were thought not possible to learn online due to practicality issues are now changing. Courses based around food, beauty therapy and fashion (to name just a few) are all practical and hands-on, and can now be studied as part of distant learning. In these cases where physical products and equipment is needed, e-learning may state for the students to have access to certain tools and facilities themselves at home before enrolling onto the course.
This allows the student to be able to learn the skills and train up for the qualification at the comfort of their own home, without having to travel or move away to another city. The beauty around the increase of students choosing to study online is that they don’t have to look at university locations anymore.
Due to more students staying at home and taking on e-learning, it means there has been a decrease in the amounts taken out across student loans, which support students who have to move location.
Increased flexibility for students
One of the most celebrated factors about online learning is how it helps people pursue a higher education degree easier than ever before.
Those who currently are working a full-time job but have always wanted to re-train or go back to studying can now do so, without giving up the day job. The flexibility of online learning now means that those working full time can ideally allocate an hour or so each day to studying, so they work this around their everyday life.
In some cases, it means longer studying periods. For example, a master’s degree when studied full time at a university may take 12 months but may be studied as part of an evening course at home for 2-3 years. On the other hand, for those who can squeeze in more time for online learning, there are accelerated programs in certain subject fields that allow master’s degree qualifications in as little as 12 months.
The best thing is that with some e-courses, you can tailor the course length to whatever suits you. In today’s busy and demanding world, you can finish the course at a slower pace if that is what suits. And on the other hand, you can allocate more time for the course, investing your time and energy in completing assignments faster.
It’s less expensive and more empowering
Some online courses can be fairly expensive, but it is very unusual for them to even become as pricy as physically attending a university. University degrees and specialist college courses can come with hefty fees due to teaching costs based on time and skill, not to mention fees associated with facilities and being in an actual classroom. Also, the money saved on having to travel to some establishments and moving to another city to live and study there can be very high.
Online courses allow you to choose the price you can afford, and study from the comfort of your bedroom if you wish! They also come with the benefit of allowing potential students who may be introverts and afraid of socialising or learning with other students to come on board.
Many of today’s adults and youth generations feel more confident behind a screen, learning at their own pace without the pressures of being in physical contact.
The final question is: Is online learning going to continue being the way forward? We think the answer to this question has to be a definite yes. It is constantly giving potential students the opportunity to choose online courses they can fit around their already busy lives, giving them the chance to further their studies without having to go back to full time education.
Some people will never be ‘classroom learners’ and thrive from working alone via technology. Others can easily get intimated from group sessions, and some don’t tend to reach their full potential when trying to absorb information in a classroom setting.
With all the above in mind, the future of education looks set to sore from the increase in online learning.
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