Following are a few common concerns has been in discussions since the emerging of online learning. AskForEducation would like to answer these concerns in 2012 as we are affioliated with an organization promotiong online education across US and have considerable knowledge about online education trends, practices and facts.
With the passage of time, the need and requirement change, which leads to the advancement in science and technology. This goes for everything around us, including education. The concept of distance learning is an ancient concept, however the online learning is something which is almost a decade old: getting education through a computer with an internet.
- Are these instructors comfortable teaching online students?
- Lack of communication between faculty members?
- Is there any proper monitoring of online institutes?
- Are there any course audits every 2-5 years?
- Benchmark for the quality of online programs as compared to some reputed campus school?
Are these instructors comfortable teaching online students?
This could be an issue at the start of online education system, but now, there are many universities offering accredited distance education programs for teacher to effectively and efficiently deliver online education to students. These courses are concentrated on how to deliver education, in what chunks, how to guide students online, what are the possible problems that a student face online and there solutions etc etc.
Lack of communication between faculty members?
Faculty communication is as important as fellow student communications, faculty needs to discuss student concerns, and devide methodologies for an effective education. This concern is also cateried through education online softwares for fellow teachers and students to communicate, and online education forums, communities makes this even more convenient for teachers to communicate,
Is there any proper monitoring of online institutes?
Online learning is being monitored in a variety of ways. Lets start with the authenticity of online schools. Schools offering accredited programs are authorized by accrediting bodies, authorized by US dept. of education. This is linked to the quality and monitoring of online education as the school has to maintain certain standards to get and maintain accreditation.
Online education is now delivered with a specifically designed softwares for example: blackboard, e-Learning, Moodle etc. These softwares tend to provide a virtual campus environment OR at-least have the ability to deliver the education in the form of videos (synchronous and asynchronous lectures), presentations, notes, emails with class fellows and instructors and an online commuinity / forum for fellow students and teachers to coordinate.
Are there any course audits every 2-5 years?
Its a normal practice with most of the accredited and reputed online schools to revise curriculum with respect to market demands and considering the online education concepts in mind, with an aim to maintain a balance between the education delivery and student's concept understanding.
Are the education standards same for online and campus institutes?
Yes, personally I belive that online schools are imparting almost the same standards of education as of some reputed campus schools. This is even 100% true for arts and religious courses or any other course which doesn't require hands-on training. All those courses which require school visit for laboratory and practicals, the blended education system is there (the mixture of online and campus education).
In short, accredited online or campus educational institutes should be able to offer some knowledge to students. My point of view is that I have learned a lot from internet (without any degree or school involvement) and I personally think any source of education including online, blended, campus etc, if imparted correctly, is beneficial for student. Its just that we have to see which learning styles suites us or which learning methodologies are possible with us. If you are a busy professional then you may have to opt for online learning, if you are a regular student then you may prefer campus education to enjoy campus life as well.
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