WR121 Tu/Th 3:00p-4:50p
Dr. Sheila Brown
“Can You Be Educated from a Distance”
An objective look into distance learning
“Can You Be Educated from a Distance,” an insightful essay by James Barszcz, brings to focus some of the benefits and disadvantages of Distance Learning education (DL). In it, Barszcz discusses the mechanics of DL courses available to students, the quality of education DL can offer, and some reasoning behind its rapidly growing popularity. “Can You Be Educated from a Distance” is an engaging article that students of all ages can benefit from.
Barszcz cleverly introduces a seemingly positive example why DL is an effective form of education, and then gives a more logical reason why it is not. Barszcz writes, “From the school’s perspective, there is a lot of money to be saved” (7), in regards to the costs of keeping a classroom open, and maintaining campus facilities. Saving money is a good thing, but the author then states that the instructors “work harder to run a DL course for a variety of reasons, they won’t be paid any more, and might well be paid less” (7). By first introducing an opposing view, Barszcz can successfully tailor his counter-point to overpower the former. Barszcz includes a quote from Fairleigh Dickinson University, suggesting that DL courses “prepares our students, more than others, for life-long learning for their jobs, their careers, and their personal growth.”(7) This suggests that those students using the internet for college classes will be better prepared for their careers because they will have more experience with the technology that is destined to play an increasingly major role in their future. Nevertheless, Barszcz explains that students today already have as much, if not more of, a grasp on internet technology than the professors teaching these online courses.
Barszcz skillfully uses statistics, data, and quotes which indicate that DL courses are not what they are cracked up to...