Advantages and Disadvantages of Online Classes

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Nowadays, online learning is becoming much more widely accepted. Even traditional universities are starting to offer online courses. It has become a preferred method of study for a lot of learners due to the fact that it offers so much flexibility and convenience. In this article, we will be going over some of the main advantages and disadvantages of online vs traditional classes.

Advantages of Online Classes:

1. Flexibility.

One of the major advantages of learning online is the ability to really have a flexible schedule. Students that do not have the time to participate in traditional classes are going to be able to take online classes because they will be able to do so when they can actually spend the time on it. When you are taking these classes online, you are essentially going to be creating your own schedule and it is going to allow you to really get a good education on your own time.

2. Convenience.

Another advantage of taking your courses online is the ability to have the convenience. Not only are you going to be able to effectively take the courses on your own time, but you will also be able to do so at your own convenience. Instead of having to travel to and from your school day in and day out, you will be able to simply take your classes in the convenience and comfort of your own home. This limits the amount of time that you are going to waste traveling to and from and it also allows you to experience the cost savings of not having to travel as well. Also, it helps those that might easily get distracted by other sounds and students. Not to mention, it allows students have access to courses that might not initially have access physically because of location. With online courses, you are going to be able to effectively go and be anywhere that you want as long as you have an Internet connection.

Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.
William Butler Yeats

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Six Advantage of Online Education – Wall Street Journal

Now that we have gone over some of the main advantages of taking courses online, we will be going over some of the common disadvantages of doing so.

Disadvantages of Online Classes:

1. Limited Social Interaction.

A very common disadvantage of getting an online education is the inability to really be social. You are going to have to deal with very limited social interaction when it comes to taking your courses online. While online students are typically going to engage with peers in various online discussions and even interact with teachers via e-mail and other sorts of communication, it is not something that will replace informal social interactions with peers prior to and after classes or the traditional interactions that take course in a traditional classroom. This can be a significant disadvantage to those that really enjoy these interactions and that love to ask questions and get answers in the classroom.

2. Lack of Structure.

Another disadvantage to online education is the inability to get adequate structure. Because we were taught all of our lives in a traditionally manner, some students simply lack the structure and organization in order to really get the most from online classes. The lack of formal structure can be a very big pitfall for unmotivated and/or students that lack the discipline. Because you are not going to have a standard meeting time for class and you will not have regular interactions with your class or teachers to remind you to complete different assignments and projects, you are likely to fall behind. Online courses require a certain attitude and organizational aptitude that some people simply do not possess.

As you can see, there are a lot of advantages and disadvantages of online learning. While it is one of the best things to happen to education in recent years, it is not always going to be the right decision for everyone. Online learning definitely has it’s advantages, but it is important that the student whom engages with it really have the ability to motivate his/herself. Also, it is important to have the organizational abilities to be able to get things done in a timely manner and to stay on top of assignments without the traditional reminders from classroom meetings.

 

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