The internet is increasingly becoming an integral part of our everyday lives dominating various sectors such as communication, health, media, and business. The education sector experienced a full-blown burst into the internet during the Covid-19 pandemic as institutions strived to remain relevant at a time of restricted movement. While students stayed home for health and safety reasons, educators and governments crafted ways for learners to continue learning at home. Although online learning was available before the pandemic, it became more prominent due to the social distance requirements. It allowed students to attend classes virtually, do their homework, and complete formative and summative assessments.
However, with the corona virus’s grasp on world economies easing, life is slowly returning to normalcy as people adapt to the new normal. Traditional classes have resumed, but online learning remains an integral component of the education system as a feasible alternative to brick and mortar classrooms. More students are opting to learn from the comfort of their homes than ever before. But what are the benefits of online learning?
5 Great Benefits of Online Learning from a Learner’s Perspective
Flexibility: Learn at your own pace
Not many students are comfortable enough to ask questions in class or ask the professor to repeat a statement. Most will go along with a conversation they disagree with simply because they haven’t had the time to analyze it. Ultimately, the learner leaves the classroom confused or less informed than the teacher would have liked. Online learning eliminates this complexity by attending to each learner independently. Due to the flexibility of accessing the class in your free time in your preferred comfort space, you are freer from distractions than a traditional student.
You also enjoy the pause and repeat options on your laptop, giving you a chance to rewind your professor as many times as possible. Butt You can also pause and analyze their statement or cross-reference it with a different text before continuing with the lecture. You can also revisit past materials or classes to corroborate the information gathered. Besides, learners can access the materials in different languages through translation applications.
Avoid the daily commute: Access the content anywhere at any time
A college student’s daily commute to campus is one of the most challenging activities. Online learning is most beneficial to people who cannot commit to a full-time school program. This alternative offers busy corporate officials a chance to advance their education in their free time and space. Besides a busy schedule, people often experience limitations due to traveling requirements and inhibitions. For instance, those experiencing various impairments and disabilities can access education without asking for special accommodation.
Similarly, some people must keep their private lives secretive for various reasons, including security. With online learning, you can access your course content anywhere, allowing you to continue working and keep your career advancement strategies secretive. This flexibility makes online learning most suitable for adults, especially working-class students with little time to waste on the road. In effect, eliminating transport-related time wasting and costs is one of the essential benefits of online learning for students.
Enjoy increased engagement
Mandatory discussion boards force online learners to engage objectively with one another without limiting subjections such as racial biases and prejudices. In most cases, virtual classes constitute students from various racial and cultural backgrounds, objectively creating diverse learning environments with little room for discrimination. The learners can expand their worldviews, deriving and sharing knowledge with their classmates without fear or favor. The networking opportunities create global perspectives with expansive knowledge bases building connectivity and integration while eliminating unnecessary differences.
Harness critical thinking, technical, and time management skills
Online learning forces students to maximize their cognitive abilities by reducing the teacher’s control of their time and learning process. The student is solely responsible for their time management. They can choose to attend the classes at the most productive times of the day and complete assignments at their own pace. Eventually, they become more organized and time conscious. The students also develop better ways to utilize their free time since they can learn while completing their chores or business activities. Given that Millennials and members of Generation Z are tech savvy and brilliant multitaskers, forcing them to sit in a traditional classroom for hours is a waste of their talents. These individuals are best at completing several tasks simultaneously with little supervision.
Online learning also provides learners access to alternative sources of information and platforms of learning. Students can seek assistance on challenging topics from essay writing services online whose academic experts and writers provide professional academic help. Learners have an opportunity to sharpen their skills in report writing, literature review, research, and essay presentation. As a result, they develop additional skills not taught in class.
- Enjoy reduced costs of education
Online learning is relatively cheaper than the traditional classroom. The system increases flexibility and accessibility of materials virtually and eases pressure on campus resources. Educational institutions require fewer staff members and physical assets to run while the teachers have lower fixed costs when executing their duties. The student can access learning materials, resources, and articles from the comfort of their homes, and the teacher can deliver a lecture from their living room.
Besides, pre-recorded lectures remain accessible even when the instructor is off duty. As a result, these institutions can offer cheaper courses to online learners by transferring the cost reduction to their customers. Not only that, the students enjoy reduced cost of attending the courses as they can access the library virtually and need not purchase unnecessary materials used at school. In most cases, the online learner reaps from the benefits of technology as most redundant activities such as breaks and printing are eliminated.
Benefits of Classroom Learning vs. Online Learning
Traditional classes promote social development
One of the drawbacks of online learning is the distance between the learners and their teachers. Traditional classrooms create room for physical interactions and social connections between students, promoting social development and networking. Since humans are social beings, physical interactions are integral to various developmental processes, including cognitive development.
Classrooms teach people to become more responsible
Physical classrooms teach more responsibility through the rules and regulations governing attendance. From time management to respect, students in a traditional campus must adhere to specific requirements to be allowed in school. As a result, the physical classroom fosters holistic development instilling values and traditions that learners take to the outside world.
Physical classrooms necessitate accommodation
In the traditional classroom, the teacher gets a chance to learn every student’s abilities and limitations. As a result, they can implement measures to accommodate needy students and promote learning at different levels. Teachers can utilize tried and tested methods such as scaffolding to aid in the learning process. Conversely, online learning only allows the tutor to share the content and limits social interactions.
Traditional classrooms create equality
The conception of the K-12 education system as currently used in the United States originated from the need for uniformity in public education. Through the conceptualization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (1965), the federal government establishes funding for various institutions to provide basic education to all. As a result, the traditional classroom promotes equality by allowing learners from diverse backgrounds to participate in the same learning environment. On the contrary, online learning will force schools to operate independently as they strive to match the needs of their select learners.