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Studying: Online vs. Offline

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In the past, getting a decent education required leaving the house and sometimes even having to travel far away from home. Nowadays, however, remote technology has made it possible for people to access high quality education no matter where in the world they are. With the rapid increase in the number of students who are choosing to receive this sort of online education, it’s only natural that there are questions of efficacy. When choosing their study path, many students now have to face the question of whether to pursue a traditional offline education or explore the world of learning remotely online.

In either case, it’s important to notice that there is no cheat code when it comes to how to study. Both studying online and offline present their own unique sets of advantages and disadvantages, and students may find themselves needing assistance in either case. Assignments can be difficult regardless of the format they come in, and both remote and in-person learners may find themselves in need of help and study resources throughout their years in school. Luckily, no matter what type of classes you are attending, the internet offers many useful learning resources, with myriad websites for study tools, buying research papers online and other things. Knowing that these kinds of resources exist to help learn makes the choice of online or offline learning far simpler to answer, as help is available no matter what.

Here we’ve put together an overview of the major differences that exist between taking online classes and attending in-person classrooms at campus schools to help you make the decision that’s right for you.

Pro of online learning: Flexibility

One of the major appeals of a remote education is that it is up to the student when they want to study. This offers students with complicated schedules a huge advantage, as they may not have the time in their schedule to pursue a classic study course in a particular location. With complicated schedules, online learning can offer students the ability to design their learning in a way that does not impede on their other daily obligations.

Young people who need to work a job to support themselves may easily find this enough of a benefit to choose remote learning over campus, as they cannot always choose to take off working hours in order to be present in the classroom. Students pursuing their degree or training in a remote setting have the opportunity to be flexible with the pace at which they take their assignments and still gain all the necessary skills they need for life. 

Con of online learning: Isolation

One of the biggest cons to pursuing a remote education is the lack of contact with peers and teachers. Many students find that teaching becomes much more efficient when they are actually present with their teacher. After all, the current university system was designed with the idea that both student and teacher would be present together in the class in order to learn. Some even argue that the whole point of time spent in class is lost if there is not adequate interaction between those learning and those teaching.

Furthermore, going to school is a major opportunity to develop the soft skills that will be asked of students once they leave school and move on to the professional world. Soft skills such as communication, teamwork, listening, and public speaking can arguably be much more difficult to develop from a remote position than in person. Even if there are opportunities for online collaboration from time to time, it can be hard for many students to truly start to get a sense of their peers when they never actually meet them. Working together with others also helps to ensure pupils’ full comprehension of a subject, as they are able to bounce ideas off one another and have multiple places they can turn to with a question or comment.

Pro of offline learning: Connections

As previously explained, the social aspect of university can have a massive impact not only on the success of your learning but so too your career path that follows graduation. Many graduates rely upon the social connections they build during their time at school as a means of finding work later on down the line. By choosing to study by learning offline, pupils increase the strength of the social network they end up building throughout their study. These connections not only help with academic learning, but can become friends, business partners, or otherwise useful contacts for many years to come.

Con of offline learning: Logistical difficulties

Simply put, it is much more difficult to study when you are tied to a given setting than it is to be coming to class from the comfort of your own house. In fact, the logistical complications involved in getting to and from college may even be enough to hold many back from even applying. Especially for those already living in a remote environment, choosing to study in a particular place can be too much of a financial burden for them to manage. Being on campus will often require paying rent and incurring other expenses that allow them to be away from the house.

One major difference between this and online learning is that there is a much lower barrier to entry when it comes to attending an online class. By learning online, those of much more varied backgrounds have the ability to access schooling, and getting educated becomes bit by bit less of an elitist pursuit.

These are just the most basic of the pros and cons that a student should consider when weighing up the choice between online learning and offline learning. Of course, there is no one right answer, and it’s up to each and every individual to explore the learning options that are best suited to their needs – whether that be online, offline, or a blend of both!