Research paper ENL 213

Topics: Virtual learning environment, Asynchronous learning, E-learning Pages: 12 (3571 words) Published: January 27, 2014

Controversy of the Online Class

Professor: Steve Lindeman
ENL 213
Wensi Zeng


Online courses have started within the past 30 years as a means of learning. With increases in Internet use, many U.S. schools offer online classes. Because of the main disparities amid online course and face to face instruction, numerous questions have been brought forth in regard to the quality of online courses. This research will help American college students to understand the difference between online classes and face-to-face courses, and give them an idea that how effective that online classes are. Therefore, the leading research question of this study is what advantages and disadvantages of online classes, and whether online classes are as effective as regular courses. Through discussing advantages and disadvantages of online classes in the U.S., I will compare online courses with face-to-face traditional courses. Moreover, the main method of evaluating the effectiveness in this research is grade. Grade has been employed to demonstrate the manner through which students’ grades for online courses differ from those in the face-to-face instruction. Gondhalekar, Barnett & Edwards (2005) conducted a research where they studied ninety sections at a learning institution between Winter 2000 and Summer 2001, which aimed at the grades of learners in the online courses were similar, or better, comparing to those in regular classes. The authors employed portfolios in accessing the performance of students taking an online course and for in class learners. In addition, several variables have been mentioned in this research to evaluate the effectiveness of online courses for all American college learners. These variables include students, instructors, course organization and instructional method.

Online classes refer to formalized instruction and learning structure to carry out distant learning through the utilization of electronic communication. Students can take a variety of lessons using a web browser or mobile device. For example, some instructors provide lecture videos online, and students can communicate with them virtually. The major distinction of online classes is that the instructor and learner are separated in space and probably time. Students can only communicate with teachers through emails, blackboard, blogs, or other Internet applications. From these descriptions, it is apparent that the learner and instructor are alienated by space sometimes. For individuals to register for online classes, they have to attain the specified grade to pass the classes. It is also a requirement to have a computer and Internet communication. Sometimes, students also need certain software to do homework of the online classes, such as Microsoft Word. This is because online classes employ technology with intranet-based techniques. According to Cicognani (2001), online classes began in 1980s as a means of distance teaching. In the 1990s, individuals started to have the alternative of earning their degrees without essentially having their instructors present. Cicognani (2001) further notes that individually owned learning institutions as University of Phoenix started availing complete academic degree programs online. Currently, this online college offers over 200 online classes. There persists to be controversy over the effectiveness of online classes. When compared to traditional teaching methods, like face-to-face, it is apparent that there are various advantages and disadvantages of online classes. Students have diverse learning capabilities, which make online classes ineffective for all American college students.

This research paper will explain the function of online classes in American universities. Evaluating the effectiveness of them compared with traditional classes. Several criteria are appropriate in demonstrating the effectiveness and ineffectiveness of...

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