The Advantages and Challenges of Online Learning – Zara Lewis

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When online learning became available, it was a pretty big deal. It meant that those who were previously unable to attend college or find the time to further their education now had a completely new option at their disposal, and a lot of people jumped on board. While some remained unimpressed, most of us quickly realized the potential it had to transform our lives and help us achieve new heights of success. Are you interested in starting an online course or want to know more about the challenges e-learners face? Then take a look at our list of great advantages, but also some problems you might have to deal with on your path to education.

You’ll have a ton more flexibility

There are many ways to learn something online, and the future trends tell us that it’s becoming even easier to pick up a new skill as long as you have internet access. Not only can you learn whenever you want, but you can also adjust the length of a class to suit your schedule. It’s very easy to work and study at the same time, and even the busiest of lifestyles can accommodate an e-course. There are many options when it comes to the material at your disposal as well—from learning German through Duolingo to getting an actual Bachelor’s degree in computer sciences from famous universities. The fact that you don’t have to commute is also a huge time-saver because everything can be done from the comfort of your own home.

You’ll have to rely on yourself for motivation

The fact that you don’t have anyone nagging at you to come to class can be a great blessing, but it can also be a curse. You’ll have to become really good at managing your own time, and you’ll also have to keep pushing yourself to avoid getting complacent and procrastinating. To help you manage this, try finding student forums and chat rooms so you could share your experiences with individuals who are in the same boat. Use this as an opportunity to become more self-reliant and learn how to make a schedule and stick to it.

There’s no reason not to combine traditional and online learning

In countries like Australia, there’s a rising trend of students who attend traditional colleges and have absolutely no qualms about supplying their studies with online classes or using e-learning platforms to get familiar with things they can’t learn in class. You can really study anywhere if you have a computer and internet access, so most people will look for appropriate student accommodation in Brisbane that offers a cozy environment and WiFi access. China is also gaining a momentum when it comes to internet education, and the number of folks who rely on their phones to learn something new is on the rise. You can do the exact same thing—there’s no reason not to use all methods that are at your disposal and do whatever you think you need to in order to get your degree.

You might not be able to get a degree with online learning alone

It really depends on which course you’re taking, but some will require you to take tests at a specific location, or to do lab work assignments in case you’re interested in medicine. You need to do your research and learn about all the little details involved before you commit yourself to anything, so contact administration and ask them to answer a few questions.

You can learn what you need much faster

You can also learn it much slower—the point is, you set the pace here. Is work becoming hectic and you can’t find any free time? Pause and resume when you’re ready. Are you feeling inspired and want to progress with your coursework faster? Go ahead and do it. Most learning platforms give you all the tools you need for success, and some courses will even give you credit if you have previous work experience or a degree that’s related to the field you’re studying.

It might not suit all learning styles

If you’re the kind of person who benefits the most from face-to-face contact, you might find online learning to be very challenging. Platforms are evolving each day and developers are doing their best to suit multiple learning styles, but not everyone will be happy if all they get to do is stare at a computer. However, you can solve these kinds of problems—for example, there’s nothing stopping you from occasionally hiring a tutor that will help you test the knowledge you picked up online, and as mentioned, you can combine traditional and online learning with ease. If you know someone who’s taking the same course, you can organize get-togethers and study sessions, and if you don’t know anyone, you can use student forums to find people from your area. There’s no need to limit human contact if that’s what you need to progress your studies.

The best and worst thing about online learning is all the freedom that you get. While there’s less guidance from professors and tutors, the fact that you get a lot of flexibility and that you can still find solutions to most of the challenges makes this a worthwhile option.