Distance Education: Options and Technologies when learning from Home

Distance Education: Options and Technologies when learning from Home

How to Find an Online Learning Program?

Learning at home has become a viable and accessible option for people who need to fit school into their schedule.

Distance education has been around for several hundred years. Being a part of essaywriterfree, I can say that over the years, it has taken on the form of weekly correspondence mailings, school lessons via radio to today’s highly interactive online education options.

Distance Education: Options and Technologies when learning from Home

Online Learning

Online learning courses are now available worldwide. Courses designed around the internet tend to include interactive group discussions with other students and tutors, and/or teachers. This online community can be highly motivating and helpful to students struggling with learning at home.

What Is Online Education

Online education is sometimes referred to as distance education, and It is education that takes place out of the classroom and uses the internet as a primary source of communication. Lesson plans and assignments are often exchanged and submitted through email or websites. Some classes may offer group discussions to interact with other students in their course through the internet. Online learning has also been essential to healthcare workers so they can make a career while working. They can get certified in ACLS (Advanced Cardiac Life Support) completely online which gives them the flexibility of learning.

Methods of Facilitation for Online Learning

Distance education is geared towards adult learners and will often incorporate various facilitation methods and techniques to appeal to all types of learners.

When participants sign up for an online learning course, they need to consider the teaching methodologies employed  to ensure that their learning needs will be met.

There are three main types of learning events that can be included in an online learning course and lead to online learning success. These events are incorporated into the facilitation of the curriculum to meet the needs of each learner enrolled in the study.

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Distance Education: Options and Technologies when learning from Home

Synchronous Learning

Synchronous learning occurs in real-time and is facilitated by an instructor through e-Learning technologies such as video conferencing or webinars.

● It is similar to a traditional classroom environment because the class occurs at a set time, and instructors and students can interact and communicate throughout the course.

● Synchronous learning allows instructors to facilitate and engage the class, encourage discussion, call on students and ask or answer questions.

● Students can follow along, take notes, ask questions and participate with others in the class.

Asynchronous Learning

Asynchronous learning is a self-paced, self-directed method of learning. Students are required to follow a syllabus with set deadlines for assigned projects, papers, and tests.

● Communication between the students and the instructor is intermittent and occurs through email, virtual chat rooms, or online discussion.

● Asynchronous learning does not have a set class time where attendance is required.

● Students have the flexibility to work on the course whenever they choose. They can learn at their own pace, communicate with others when they feel it is necessary and work on the course material at any time of the day.

Distance Education: Options and Technologies when learning from Home

Blended Learning

Blended learning is a combination of both synchronous and asynchronous learning methodologies. It is one of the most successful online learning courses and effectively incorporates a variety of learning formats, technologies, and activities throughout the course.

● Students have the option of participating in a virtual classroom through webinars, e-meetings, or video conferencing. They also have the option of participating in class forums, online discussions, and chats to further enhance the learning experience.

● Blended learning also incorporates assigned tasks, projects, assignments, and tests that students can work on at their own pace and according to their schedule.

● Blending learning provides students with a variety of platforms for learning the course material. Students can choose to participate in all the media or learn through one or two forums provided.

The main goal of distance education is to provide adult learners with the opportunity to continue their education inflexible manner that suits their lifestyle and learning style. Synchronous learning, asynchronous learning, and blended learning are unique and compelling facilitation methodologies that appeal to many learners and can significantly enhance the quality of a student’s online learning experience.

Benefits of Online Education

The benefits of online education vary depending on the student’s needs. A few of the more common reasons why students enjoy online learning are the following:

● flexibility

● ability to attend school without relocating

● being able to work around work, family, and/or personal schedule

Distance Education: Options and Technologies when learning from Home

Challenges of Online Learning

When considering the distance and online education, the challenges must be considered as well as the benefits. The following are a few common challenges faced by distance learners.

● Motivation – Distance learners need to be self-motivated. There are no scheduled classes and no teachers or tutors to apply pressure. The will to succeed must come entirely from the student.

● Interaction – While some courses provide online discussion groups and forums, other courses will be entirely self-directed. This can be a real drawback for some students.

● Lack of structure – Flexibility is certainly a benefit of learning at home, but it can also be a drawback for those who might find it too difficult to fit the study time into their schedule.

Finding the Right Online Course

Distance learning courses are available through many different institutions today. Schools such as the UK’s Open University and Canada’s Athabasca University both specialize in distance education. Many universities, including such prestigious names as the University of Oxford or Cambridge, are now offering distance learning programs. Many community colleges also offer courses and programs via distance learning.

Regardless of circumstances, distance education has become a viable and popular means to pursue higher education. Some research through local schools and the internet will demonstrate that in today’s world, the possibilities for learning at home are rapidly increasing.

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