Benefits of Online Education over Campus-Based One
Introduction of two main approaches in higher education
Undoubtedly, education is an integral part of citizens’ life all around the world. Nowadays, the rapid growth of the Internet technology influences higher education too. Everyone can choose between online and campus-based education. Every of these approaches have its advantages and disadvantages and it is necessary to take your own stance.
Analysis of their benefits and expression of own opinion towards them
Firstly, it is necessary to explain the term “online education”. Online education is one form of learning and teaching, which uses computer-mediated communication via the Internet to achieve the learning objectives within an educational organization. It should also be noted that people often view online education and distance education as synonymous (Moore & Anderson, 2003). I am a supporter of online education because it gives the opportunity to have more free time for a personal life. It is more convenient for older students who have already created their own families and have busy schedules with their careers. Online education offers them flexibility. Moreover, even campus-based students deal with online education every day because it is becoming an increasingly essential component of college education. There is an explosive growth of online instruction that complements traditional instruction and tailors the needs of individual students (Dawley, 2007). This type of education is known as hybrid or blended learning. Even in 2005 in the USA some researches indicated that .3 million students take online college courses (Sloan-C, 2005). Almost two-thirds of all schools offering face-to-face courses also offered online courses. More than 40% of schools offering Master’s degree programs also offered online programs. 80% of doctoral granting universities also offered online courses (Sloan-C, 2005) It proves that online education is not only good for distance students, but for campus-based ones too. Secondly, as for me, online learning is a chance for innovation and growth in all kinds of learning domains. Students are more creative while studying online because they do not feel the pressure of a teacher, time and classmates. Students can easily choose the courses, which they like and do not think about the opinion of others. In addition, online learning does not create completion and students can more concentrate on the process of studying rather than of its results. Thirdly, online studying is convenient approach because it can take place anywhere and at any time. In addition, it is a cost-effective one because students do not need to spend money on living at dormitory, buying food and other things with which they deal while studying at university. That is why many students of the 21st century prefer “on-demand” virtual learning to traditional university programs.
On the other hand, campus-based education has many benefits too. Firstly, it is social interaction, which is almost impossible while studying online. Campus – based education provides students with the opportunity to communicate and share experience with teachers and peers. In addition, the process of campus-based studying is more interesting than online one because students can take part in different tasks and fulfil themselves in a great variety of extracurricular activities. Secondly, it is face-to-face interaction with a professor, who can help students to identify their areas of weakness, as well as strong points. In addition, it is a rare professor who is unwilling to offer help and guidance. Thirdly, it is important facilities. If one is studying at home, he or she simply does not have access to school’s laboratories, libraries and gyms. Fourthly, it is degree programs, which are available only for campus-based students. For campus-based students are easier to build a great career after graduation in such areas as health, science, engineering and so on. Finally, it is a clearly defined schedule. Students find it beneficial, because they clearly know what they have to do every day and because of it, they can properly organize their time. In comparison with online education, campus-based one is more demanding and it pushes students to be disciplined.
Having considered all the advantages of these two types of education, I come to opinion that the best option is hybrid education. It will help to unit all benefits of online and campus-based studying. By alternating traditional classes with virtual ones, students will have more opportunities to master the course material and express their individuality. For example, shy and timid students, who are not active participants of traditional class’s discussion, can be empowered by the anonymity to express their opinions.
To sum up, online education, as well as traditional campus-based one, plays a great role in the life of every student. To my mind, the hybrid education is the best way to do things and combine all the benefits of these two approaches.