Pros and Cons of Online Versus Traditional Learning

Topics: Education, History of education, Distance education Pages: 7 (1059 words) Published: June 1, 2014

Jaqueline O’Neill

Pros and Cons of Online Versus Traditional Learning
Higher education is a big step in a person’s life. There are many decisions that need to be thought out and made. Education is something which is very important in a person’s life and career choices. Whether one chooses to get his or her education on the Internet or through the traditional fashion should be based on that person’s general needs. There are pros and cons to each method of furthering ones education. Following are a few positive and negative sides of each one, which should be considered before taking this big step. If someone has a busy life with family, work, and other responsibilities, online education might be the suitable option for him or her. Online classes are more flexible than traditional classes. There are no set times for one to study or take quizzes, although there are assignments that are due on a given date. The student can do this at his or her convenience. Taking online classes is also something that would work well for the individual who would otherwise be uncomfortable in a traditional class setting. Although there are still discussions and participation involved with Internet learning, someone who might feel uncomfortable in an on campus classroom answering and asking questions in front of classmates or the instructor would feel more comfortable participating with the classmates and instructors in an online setting. Since there are many different methods of learning for individuals such as auditory, kinesthetic, and many other ways, online learning is of great benefit. This allows the student to learn by whichever method works best for him or her.

This is something that would be virtually impossible in a traditional classroom setting. On the flipside, online classes require students to develop good time management skills and self-discipline. It is necessary for students to divide their responsibilities by prioritizing each in order to achieve the tasks they face and are given. This can be stressful and overwhelming at times. Therefore students need to train themselves to adjust their life accordingly. Other issues that arise would be having access to a reliable computer and knowing how to use the computer and certain software that is needed for Internet learning. Online learning requires the student to have Internet access. If students cannot access the Internet they cannot do the work which is required of them. If the student’s computer malfunctions, he or she will need to have a backup plan. There is also certain software that is needed. The computer that is used has to support that software. The student also has to have the ability to learn how to use both. For the person who enjoys physically interacting with others and wants the “true college experience”, on campus learning might be the best option. The student can socialize with other students on a more personal level as it is face-to-face. This allows more opportunity for these friendships and relationships to evolve and become lifelong. The student has a better opportunity to participate in extracurricular activities with other students, unlike being in an online learning environment. On the negative side, there are going to be times when unforeseen circumstances will arise. For example, if you have job or family responsibilities or if you have car trouble, you are still obligated to show up for classes at a given day and time. There is not the same “freedom” involved as there is with online learning. Another hindrance is that each student has his or her own personal technique when it comes to learning. When instructors in the traditional setting are teaching a class they are only teaching by verbally speaking. There are some students who are visual or kinesthetic learners. These types of learners cannot fully comprehend the lessons through auditory methods of...
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