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Distance Learning Vs Face To Face Tuition
Mon 28th February 2011
Over the years distance learning has become a popular and convenient way of studying for GCSE's, A Levels, professional qualifications and even degrees thanks to the introduction of web-based settings, applications and tools. But, can distance learning provide the same kind of learning experience as a classroom environment?
Learning via the internet has a host of advantages including convenience, flexibility and instant accessibility. Depending upon the training provider used, students are often able to integrate their studies into their daily routine with very little disruption. Working adults or busy parents can further their career without the inconvenience of having to fit in a four year degree course or three month professional qualification at an institution across the other side of town. Distance learning provides the flexibility to be able to complete the same standard of education or training whilst maintaining a full-time job or raising a family.
Learning from home is highly cost-effective as there are no additional commute charges, accommodation costs or dining expenses which are incurred whilst studying at an institution on the other side of town. It is also beneficial for people with disabilities as they do not have the worry of gaining access to a classroom. People who live in remote or disadvantaged locations can also receive the same tuition as those who are conveniently placed for attendance.
Shy people could become left behind in a classroom setting as they are less likely to share their views. As a result, they often miss out on the advantage of sharing ideas or discussing ways to complete tasks. If quieter pupils cannot provide feedback in some other form, they could feel isolated and lose interest. Classroom learning also makes it difficult for tutors to spot those pupils who may be experiencing difficulties or are suffering from learning deficiencies.
An online class offers that personal touch where weaknesses can be addressed via online chat or email. Nowadays, a degree or qualification which has been studied online is just as recognized as one which has been studied through a college or university. Most online learners will work through the exact curriculum, academic calendar and tuition as students in attendance. Distance learners who study for degrees will also receive the same certification as their uni counterparts and there will be no evidence that the qualification was studied via distance learning.
In comparison to online learning, students who opt for a training provider via a classroom setting have the immediate feedback of their tutors whenever a problem arises. It is also easier to chat with fellow students in a face to face environment as the element of spontaneity can raise debates and discussions. This is where friendships can be built and social interaction can extend into evenings out, sporting weekends or even trips away. Although online learners will have their own set of friends and social activities, it is sometimes harder to try out different things if they have to be organized independently.
Many students flourish from a classroom setting as it provides a regular schedule and a structure which is mapped out and provides clear direction. A training company which offers face to face tuition allows students to benefit from the verbal behaviour of a teacher which could involve being praised, addressed by name or enjoying some humorous banter to provide a relaxed ambience for study. Complement this with non-verbal actions such as smiling, a relaxed posture and a varying vocal tone and a unique bond is built between both student and tutor.
An online training provider offers a secure and instant way to submit coursework, communicate with tutors and fellow students. Many classes encourage online discussions which help to alleviate feelings of isolation.
A training provider can only bring out the best in pupils via a careful monitoring system to record progress and evolve according to the needs of each and every student. This involves acute attention to the varying learning styles that are available and in many cases, the level of experience that students have with technology.
Some people benefit from a training company that can offer a combination of both online and classroom based learning to provides the best of both worlds. Some people start their studies with a training provider that is based in a classroom setting but later swap for lessons online. It is often through trial and error that we find the best method of study for us. If studying for a degree, credits can still be counted if a pupil switches from a classroom setting to online or vice versa.
There are good and bad points to every type of learning discipline and the only way to discover the right one is to find a course that offers the best advantages. At the end of the day, whether a student chooses to learn in a classroom setting or online it is the individual motivation which determines how the extra training or qualifications will be used to further advance a career or interest.
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