What are the advantages of online learning?
There is no question that online learning (e-learning) is a growing trend. But, why is that?
It’s cheaper: Your users can learn with any device that is connected to the Internet. There’s no need to rent a building or pay for expensive utility bills that are required to provide students with a learning facility. In addition, students and teachers will no longer commute to class, thereby saving them money as well!
It takes less time: Not only does eliminating the need to commute save money, but it also saves everyone time. Moreover, the teacher or trainer doesn’t need to give the same class repeatedly to different groups of students. He or she only needs to prepare the content once and then share it with different groups at anytime necessary.
It allows for self-paced learning: Students or trainees can take courses from their own devices anytime and anywhere. So, those who don’t have time for traditional classes can learn online when they have the time.
It’s modern: Most people today prefer to consume content using the Internet. The very fact that you are reading this article online is proof of that! We now use the Internet to read the news, watch our favorite TV shows, chat with friends, book appointments, shop, and so much more. Considering all of the convenience the Internet has added to our daily lives, why should education remain strictly traditional instead of utilizing the advantages provided by the Internet?
What are the disadvantages of online learning?
Are there any? 😅 Yes, there are some disadvantages to online education.
It takes self-discipline: While experience has shown that online students are forced to become more self-disciplined, those that remain unengaged could be a challenge as their activities cannot be monitored in class.
Plagiarism: Keeping in mind that your students are using a computer and not being monitored at all times, they could potentially plagiarize essays and other assignments.
Cheating: Along similar lines, it can be easier for students to cheat on online exams.
Isolation: Since students don’t have to be physically present in a classroom, it might be more difficult (or nearly impossible) for them to get in touch with other learners.
How can the modern learner overcome these challenges?
Although e-learning comes with some disadvantages, at Easy LMS we are pretty biased and believe that the advantages outweigh the disadvantages by far.
Self-discipline can be acquired and is a quality that will benefit learners in ways that go far beyond learning.
Plagiarism and cheating can happen in traditional learning scenarios as well, and there are ways to prevent that from happening in online exams (e.g., plagiarism checkers available online) that are not possible to use in a regular classroom.
Isolation can be solved if you combine different methods of learning as with blended learning, which fosters more interaction between the students.
NC State University
University of Illinois