The Downside Of Online Education

Online education has been the preference of many students who want to pursue higher education. Not only does it give them an environment free of problems with peers, but it also gives them ample time to make a living and earn money so they can pay for their education with student loans and their growing interest rates playing a less significant roles in their lives. It does not hurt that students do not have to spend ample hours on deciding which clothes to wear to school because they can just attend class wearing their pajamas.

But like every coin has two sides, so does online education. In spite of the perks of working towards a degree while being able to work jobs with all the comfort in the world, online education does have its downside.

What seeking an online education takes away from its students are most of the time the same things that it offers to save students from. For one, bullying. It does not end high school. College and university students may have matured, but they also have adapted the grown up manners of bullying. It is indeed tempting.

However, students enrolled to online schools are missing the chance to interact with their peers. It is said that the best form of education lies outside the four walls of the classroom. Online education is a perfect fit to this. It should not be taken literally, though.

What is talked about when people say that there is a lot of learning to be done outside the four walls of the classroom is interaction with students. Everyone does not get along with everybody, but it does help in strengthening the student’s personality. Eventually, a student is going to transition to the adult world, like the work place. He is going to have to deal with different personalities in the office and one who has not had the chance to grow in such an environment like the one that traditional schools offer has lesser chances of making through a day without crying.

The End Of Traditional Education

People working in the music industry have noticed and have been disappointed by the shrinking number of physical album sales. It was not even fifteen years ago when the world’s biggest boy band sold a million copies in their debut week. Nowadays, it takes several months before a musical act’s new album reaches platinum status. Most now rely on the sales of the singles off of an album. It still is a puzzle to them, though, how a song can sit at the top of the music charts and sell millions of copies while the album the album it is included barely gains a gold certification. Many blame it on the boom of the digital age. And people in the academe have a somewhat similar fear.

First, there was home schooling. It was an ideal option for children who are bullied at school and those who start working in the entertainment industry at a young age. There is not much fear about school buildings becoming abandoned structures in the future. However, with the rise of the digital millennium, more and more adults turn into online education.

They have jobs to juggle to make ends meet. Not only is tertiary and postgraduate education expensive, but it is also time consuming. Adults who want to advance in their chosen field face the boulder that is the master’s degree and, for some, a doctorate. While it is tempting to submit a resignation letter so one can shift his entire focus to education, it is not practical in any way.

Education is a privilege and one that only money can afford. People in the academe, mostly private schools, worry about the small number of students who show up in class. In some cases, sections are cancelled altogether.

However, there is no need to fear online education being the end to traditional education. It is an alternative and a smart one at that.

The Online Revolution of Higher Education

Many experts claim that the substitution of labor with technology has a vast potential to increase the people’s access to an education with an elite caliber. They argue that labor is expensive while, on the other hand, technology is cheap.

University leaders from Harvard and MIT created a partnership in online education and recently gathered for a conference where they spoke about reaching millions of new students from around the world and why online learning is indeed revolutionary. To these university leaders, online education is the biggest change in the history of education since the boom of the printing press.

They also admitted that the world is still in the early stages of what is deemed to be a historic transformation is the manner that students can learn and teachers can relay information and how school system are going to be organized.

However, according to themselves, the online courses that they will be presenting in the future are not paths leading to degrees and diplomas that have the stamp of Harvard and MIT as what students of their traditional form of education receive.

While that may come as a frustration to many, the good news is that their initiative is to offer free online courses that will be prepared by a group of top professors and will be paid for by the university themselves. There will also be no talks about revenues and business plans to sustain it.

They admit that the reason behind all these efforts is they want to be a part of, if not kick start the change that is inevitable.

Many also admit that it is a huge challenge even with other Ivy League schools joining in the crusade. They also believe that meeting this challenge is possible and over time, online education can only provide immeasurable improvements in the quality of higher education and accessing it.

The Perks Of Online Education

Both public and private institutions are beginning to offer complete online undergraduate and graduate programs and more people are jumping at this opportunity with the thinking that it is the most practical. Higher education costs money and while student loans are offered by both the federal government and private sectors, it has become less attractive to many. People choose to pursue higher education in order for them to have access to a better life. However, the thought of paying all those loans and their growing interest rates for yeas on end does nothing but shatter the fantasy and the chance of a brighter future.

No one person wants to spend a fraction of his paycheck to pay off a student loan because he is already facing the struggle of making ends meet. And it is not just during the first couple of years. Some people reach their forties and are still dodging calls from creditors and pleading to give them an extension.

The opportunity that online education gives is the chance to earn a degree and a diploma while the students also have time to work to earn the money so they can pay for an education. It may be true to conventional college and university students. However, there is always the hassle of running from the classroom to their workplace and changing into their work uniforms.

With online education, there is no fear about showing up at work late and eventually getting fired. With online education, there is also no need to worry about missing the first few minutes of class or sometimes missing an entire class altogether. As long as students have access to the Internet, there is no need to create a room for such worries. Students can both study and work at home.

Online education is indeed revolutionizing a generation.

The Trouble With Online Education

Most teachers say that they surprisingly learn a lot from their students. The truth in this sentiment does not lie in what professors can learn about how the current generation interact with each other and with the people belonging to the generation that produced them, but because a large lecture class almost always creates an intellectual community that is nothing but genuine.

Having said this, can online education ever become the very best sort of education?

What teaching at a college offers is the chance for professors to become aware of and understand the needs of the students. There are heated debates that are carried onto the next session and that can only serve as a perfect example of how communication is not a one-way conduit.

With every class that professors teach, they also learn who the people are sitting in front of them. They can assess where students are intellectually and, at the same time, know what they can do to help them grow. After all, growing is what education is all about.

What a classroom setting provides is a chance to create dialogues. Well, at least, with professor who is not an old school sort and with students who are willing to voice out their thoughts. Whereas in online education, this dialogue between the professor and his students has a tendency to become fixed. In fact, the dialogue created in an online class has a tendency to resemble a monologue. Everyone is waiting for the other to finish expressing their thoughts. And while that is deemed as respectful in an adult setting, it often lacks the fiery passion of classroom debates.

Apart from a chance to grow, education is also about collaborations between professors and their students. Learning, after all, is collective. While learning over the Internet fosters independence, it also tends to be lonelier.

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