Did you ever have a teacher who you dreaded having lessons with? Someone who bored you to death and put you off that particular class? It may not have been the subject that was the problem, but the teacher. An inspirational and inspiring teacher can make a huge difference to our learning – and the best ones also know their stuff. These types of teachers exist, but what’s the use if they don’t teach at your school or college? However, using modern technology it is now possible to bring these teachers to you with video and audio classes. In theory, this type of teaching is quite simple and entirely possible. So, rather than going into college you just have to watch a video of your required class online. With this idea, you needn’t just be taught by the teachers that are at a school near where you live, but could have lessons from an expert anywhere in the world! Not only would this offer you the best information, but would also mean you could even ‘go to class’ from the comfort of your own bed, at a time that suited you!
While the convenience of this type of teaching is clear to us, it also offers benefits to others around the world. Take the example of the third world, where schools may be hard to get to, inaccessible, or even unavailable to many. Once again, the lessons can be sent directly to these places, allowing greater educational opportunities to those who may otherwise miss out.
This may sound like a far-fetched dream, but this type of education is getting closer than you may imagine, with a number of businesses already developing the idea to bring a classroom-free learning environment. It is something that has already been shown to work with distance learning courses, such as the Open University. With online forums added to the mix, students are able to interact and discuss subjects and also ask questions of their tutors.
For all the positives, there are still some down-sides to this type of learning. Most notably is the fact that you would need to really work hard to engage with your classes. Without a teacher making sure you are paying attention and doing your studies, the onus falls on you to actually complete the course and watch the required classes. Even if you are self-motivated enough to keep up with the workload, there is also still the problem of not being with the teacher. It is certainly a lot easier to get immediate feedback in a classroom if there is something you don’t understand and need explaining again.
It seems that there are pros and cons to both the more traditional learning styles and the more online orientated approach. Could it be that the real answer still lies in a mixture of both, with online classes supplemented with face-to-face discussion groups with other students and a tutor? Alternatively could video conference calling replace the need for this face-to-face approach altogether?
Distance learning is a great way to learn if you are motivated and, for whatever reasons, can’t or don’t want to travel to study. We may be some way away from seeing all school and college students from being taught online, but the early signs show that this is a developing area of education.
Why not check out the distance learning options right here on NotGoingToUni to see if you could benefit right now?