Distance Learning – Pros and Cons

Even though distance learning is often looked down upon by many, it can still be of use to those who are unable to attend a traditional school. There are still many communities that have neither learning institutions or transportation to these facilities. Due to time and money saving advantages, distance learning is an excellent option for those wanting a better education.

Places like Maths Online are offering online courses. These are nearly identical to the on-campus versions except that the students learn at home, usually on a computer. Other universities offer courses by mail, where students mail in their coursework.

Whether or not distance learning is right depends on the student. While many students might not be comfortable with this learning arrangement, other students benefit greatly from it.

Disadvantages

1. No Direct Contact with Instructors

This is one of the major disadvantages of distance learning. Some students need an instructor to help them. Others simply prefer face-to-face interaction. Getting used to message boards and chat may help students with this problem.

2. Over dependence on Technology

Unless the students have the materials delivered by mail, they will need to have internet access in order to get their lessons and send them back to the instructors. Plus, using the internet to contact the faculty could be a problem for many students.

3. Lack of Discipline

Without an instructor to guide them, the students must keep themselves motivated and focused. Not everyone has the will to commit to the course. Students will have to make themselves do the work.

4. It can get lonely

Due to the lack of face-to-face interaction, some students might not feel comfortable with distance learning. They prefer to have a face-to-face instructor to guide them. This can be solved by becoming more familiar with the internet.

5. Not all courses are available

While courses like math and English can be taught online, there are many other that can’t. Medicine and Engineering, for example, need experiments as part of the course. Obviously, the student needs to be in a supervised lab in order to complete the course. Some things need to be taught in classrooms.

Advantages

1. Flexibility

Students can work at their old job while they prepare for a better one. Not everyone has the time to pursue and education exclusively. Not everyone has the ability to travel to a traditional school. Most people usually work another job to make extra money while going to school.

2. Saves Time and Energy

Students can save a lot of time and money in fuel costs. Plus, it is a big advantage for people who live in areas that don’t have a lot of places to learn. There are still quite a few place that have neither schools nor transportation to them. A site like Maths Online is the only option for many of these students.

3. Study at your own pace

While some students may learn things rather quickly, others may need some more time to understand the material, and yet many others are somewhere inbetween. Every student has their own learning pace. With distance learning, students can learn the material at their own pace.

4. Saves Money

Not only can students save money in transportation and fuel costs, but many courses are much cheaper than their traditional counterparts. Since there is no physical school to attend, there is no building to upkeep. This is yet another advantage for students who may have to work at another job while studying.

5. Convenient

You can drop your coursework off at the post office, or you can submit it online. Again, this is much easier than going back and forth to a traditional school, many of which are very far away for many students. This makes distance learning much easier for many students.

6. Unlimited Access to Course Materials and Other Students

Students can check materials anytime they want to, day or night. They can also communicate with other classmates in message boards or chat. They can also post questions and maybe even coursework on the sites.

7. Study any Topic you Want

Since the students have all the materials they need already, they can just skip around and find the parts that interest them the most. This will ensure that students will stay interested in the subject.

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