Educational websites are just one example of the many common types of websites available for people of all levels of experience and from varied backgrounds. Educational institutions use this type of website to provide both information and educational materials to their website visitors.
Colleges and universities are judged on many factors including the number of exceptional students they produce. Technology has provided another way for them to compete with each other by offering access to an online learning platform called the Massive Online Open Courses (MOOC), a leader in online learning and education. Initially set up as an online place to learn for those not enrolled in any specific school, the concept has spread throughout many schools as innovative ways to help students learn without being physically present.
Location Doesn’t Matter
As higher education costs continue to rise, technology has helped by providing more cost-effective and efficient ways for a student to learn through online education, also known as distance learning. This gives students the ability to learn at any time or location of their choosing. Students and the school they attend can literally be physically located nowhere near each other and there is no need for them to relocate. They will still have access to course material and can still interact with classmates and teachers via remote conferencing technology.
One of the best benefits of distance learning is the flexibility it offers. Being able to access course material remotely gives students the ability to learn from any location. This is helpful even for those students who are currently enrolled in a physical facility that doesn’t offer a particular course they are interested in. All they have to do is find where the course is being offered and enroll via the Internet. All students need is an Internet connection and a computer device to enroll in any course anywhere, including in another country. Flexibility in terms of time and scheduling is also a valuable benefit to distance learning. The ability to study at the ideal time for each student can reduce the pressure of time-constraints and increase productivity.
Balance Family and Work
As an extension to the flexibility of distance learning where students can learn at their own pace while not constrained to a fixed timetable or schedule, this education model is well-suited for many other groups of people.
- Many parents decide to either go back to college to get their degree, finish one they started, or pursue an advanced degree. It is very difficult to juggle the roles of being a parent and a student at the same time. What happens when your children get sick, have a snow day, or need to be driven to after-school activities? Taking the courses online remotely allows students who are also parents to further their education while continuing to provide their children with proper care and the attention they need.
- Students who have a language barrier or are not familiar with the course subject may require additional support. With distance learning platforms, there are online message boards where those who have specific questions or are looking for extra help can engage with others who can offer assistance. This also helps to take the pressure off because peers are not physically present in an online location. Additionally, learning via distance courses gives students the freedom to re-read, replay, or re-watch any particular lesson.
- Prior to the rise of distance learning becoming more popular, those in the military, as well as their spouses, were forced to put their education on hold, delayed, or even forgotten. This used to get in the way of a military service person getting promoted within the ranks and with spouses working towards earning a degree. Now college courses and degree programs can go wherever the computers go.
- When a mother or father decides to stay home and take care of their children while their spouse works to take financial care of the family, distance learning offers valuable educational opportunities. These opportunities can prepare the stay-at-home parent for future employment by providing the freedom and flexibility to pursue a college degree, an advanced degree, or special training.
Distance learning includes courses and degrees making education more accessible to anyone with an Internet connection and a computer. Being able to connect to an online educational platform 24 hours a day 7 days a week makes distance education a valuable alternative to on-campus training and degree programs.
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