Distance Education: Pros and Cons

Happy Student 
As we all know, it is never late to study. If you want to get the education you only need to have a will. Although, few problems can appear on your way. First of all, it is a problem of time. The modern world is so fast that your time is scheduled by the minute. If you want to get two specialties at the same time it may turn into a challenge. Also, you can face the financial issue. It is connected with higher education and the preparation for it. The competition for places is high and not everyone can afford the high prices. The distance education can solve all these problems.

What Is It?

The answer is already contained in the definition. This is studying “at a distance" when the professor and the student are separated. Naturally, the new technologies of presentation of teaching materials are used to support communication. The distance education is cheaper and available for the wide auditory, opening up the possibility of communication over long distances. The development of distance education is caused by the latest achievements in the field of learning technologies, media and communications, the rapid development of various technical systems. This term is primarily connected with computer and information technology, satellite communications systems and distribution of computer training programs etc.

Where Does It Come from?

The remoted education began to develop rapidly in Europe and the US in the early 70th. The reasons for spreading of this type are simple: each person regardless of their nationality and location can receive a diploma of any university in the world (if the university supports such program). A lot of experts in the field of education consider the distance studying as a perspective method because it can be useful for many students and it is rather cheap. Additionally, you can choose only courses, that you need. It is like "education on demand," which has an advantage in price.

How It Works

More often, the distance learning is chosen by those who want to receive two diplomas at the same time, who cannot join the classes due to the work or for personal reasons cannot or do not want to attend a university. For example, if you want to get the EU diploma, but you have no opportunity to move to Europe, you should try distance learning. Also, a great number of students are choosing the remote version of obtaining the Master's degree. When you choose a university, you should pay attention to the features of the program: often even telecommuting program requires periodic visits to the university or academic department (for international students), and their frequency depends on the program.

Online Studying

The form of distance learning in whole depends on the university and educational program. Most of the time the student is provided with information and lectures. They are studying the profile literature on their own. In the process of learning the student can ask questions directly to the professor, discuss them in group or solve them with a personal manager, which is attached to them for the whole period of studying. Periodically the online seminars, workshops by Google Hangouts or analog online conferencing will be held. In general, the distance learning process has nothing different from the correspondence; studying occurs over the Internet. In addition to the tests, an important criterion of semester results is independent work including essays, creative assignments, business projects, etc.

Obtaining a Diploma

Often, in order to pass the final test on your specialty, you have to come to the university. With regard to the foreign distant programs, this circumstance entirely depends on the university, so it should be clarified when you choose a program. Often, universities have training centers in many countries, so it is possible for you not to travel out of the country. Upon the completion of the master program, the student receives a standardized degree that is absolutely no different from the diploma issued to the full-time students. If you worry about the value of the diploma regarding the job search, you can drop the emotion aside - the form of studying is not specified in the documents.

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Anytime Plus Anywhere

There are a lot of profits in studying remotely. Distant student can decide when and how much time he needs to study of the material during the semester. You may build an individual studying schedule. Some educational institutions offer their students the opportunity to put off learning for a long time and come back to it again without having to pay for educational services. If you live in Texas and want to learn in NY without moving, it is not a problem! You can learn from the house, office or from anywhere in the world. You just need to have a computer with Internet access. No need to go to college every day is a definite plus for people with disabilities. Communication with the tutors is carried out in different ways: both on-line and off-line. Sometimes it is more effective to consult with the professor via e-mail.

Independence

You do not have to worry about the fact that you lag behind your classmates. You can always return to the previous topics, watch the video lectures several times, and the already learned topics can be skipped. The main thing is to successfully pass the intermediate and final certification. Also, you can take several different courses at the same time, and get a second higher education. It is not necessary to take a leave at university and you can go on a trip anytime you want. The interim certification of students of distance learning courses are held in the form of on-line tests. Therefore, the students feel less stress before meeting with examiners. It eliminates the possibility of subjective evaluation: the system checks the correct answers to the test, and the student's academic performance in other subjects, social status, and other factors do not affect the results.

Good Results

American scientists say that distance learning results are not inferior or superior to traditional forms of learning. You study all the materials independently. This improves the memorization and understanding of the information and the opportunity to apply the knowledge into practice helps to fix them. In addition, the latest technologies make learning more interesting. Also, you will not face a problem such as the lack of textbooks. The access to all relevant literature is given to the student after the registration on the website of the university or he receives the educational materials via the mail. Social equality means equal access to the education, regardless of place, the state of health, material security.

Self-Control

Despite all the features, there are some arguments against distance education. You should learn almost all training material on your own. This requires the developed willpower, responsibility, and self-control. The distance learning requires a rigid self-discipline, and the result depends on the autonomy and consciousness of the student. Also, students' personal contact with each other and with the teachers is minimal, if not absent. Therefore, this form of learning is not suitable for the development of communication skills, confidence and teamwork skills. There is a lack of full-time communication between student and professor. Thus, all aspects associated with an individual approach are excluded. When there is no mentor who could test your knowledge, this can be a significant drawback.


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