With so much of our lives moving online, is it time that education did too?
There are already so many incredible learning and teaching resources online, plus distance learning and online qualifications, is there a chance that all education could make the migration? University degree applications are gradually decreasing year on year, due to the cost and time they take to obtain. This is allowing the digital education market to grow and grow.
What do students get out of studying online?
There are a large number of pros for students when it comes to getting their higher education qualifications online:
- It’s flexible: Learn at your own pace, in your own time. Don’t like 9 am lectures? No problem.
- It’s empowering: Even shy students can weigh in on discussions in a virtual environment – allowing them to get the best out of debates, without being intimidated.
- It’s cost effective – With no brick and mortar premises, no staff cohort and an unlimited number of potential students, digital learning is cheaper because it can be.
How is online learning better than traditional teaching methods?
We know that online learning is great, and certainly has a place, but is it better than the traditional learning paradigm?
- It’s more personalised – Due to various different platforms and software elements, students can learn in a way that works for them. Software like DreamBox, a maths software, adapts to the students skill level as they learn – in a way that a teacher of a class of 30 would struggle to do.
- It’s modern – Education of the past focused on giving students skills and rote-learning exercises. These days, we don’t actually need to retain much information – online learning reflects the fact that we can get a computer to teach us skills and, therefore, focuses more on our ability to accurately source credible information.
- It’s better for students (and even teachers) – Whilst we don’t know the exact ramifications of a more digital learning environment, we do know that many students feel they’ve had a positive experience with online learning because they were put into small groups with like-minded peers. Teachers may be concerned that things such as AI will render their job useless. However, CEOs like Brian Greenburg suggest that the real magic is in giving great educators freedom and license into how school works.
One of the major pros of online learning is the price. Traditional universities and colleges demand termly fees, maintenance loans, housing costs and often additional books and resources that need purchasing throughout. With online learning, you know the course cost upfront – and all you need is a wi-fi connection and a laptop.
With all this in mind, it would be hard to imagine how online learning couldn’t become the natural future of education. A recent survey suggests that 33% of college students are taking at least one online course – that’s already a huge number.
Time will tell just how far digital will grow, but in the meantime, why not see what everyone’s talking about and take a look at some of the courses available to you, today.