Online learning. Pros and Cons of E-learning

Online learning

You can hear about online learning very often now. But what is e-learning really and is it right for us? In today's article we will try to answer all these questions.

Online learning is a method of distance learning using the Internet and a computer. We, as well as around the world, companies, educational institutions, tutors choose the introduction of electronic education. Because some forms of online learning are more suitable for educating your employees and students. Teachers create their own courses, conduct webinars, share knowledge and at the same time make good money on it.

E-learning

E-learning is a fairly broad concept, as it implies learning using not only a computer, but also the Internet. To some extent, searching for information on Google or watching tutorials on YouTube can also be attributed to e-learning. However, these methods will not be effective for in-depth study of any topic or discipline.

For training, it is better to use webinar services. Using webinars for online education, we can greatly simplify our lives. There is no need to rent a room for classes, and students need to take time off at work or rush from school to catch your lecture. Everyone can join the classes, sitting in home clothes on the couch or standing in a traffic jam.

The problem of finding a place for a car is also eliminated. How often we are late somewhere just because we did not find a free parking space! With webinars, the student only needs to have access to the Internet, and the host will have an account in the webinar service. It remains only to inform the students about the planned webinar and that’s all.

Holding a traditional seminar or lecture face to face very often causes fear and embarrassment, especially if it comes to public speaking. Everyone is looking at you, a vacuum in your head, and in addition someone forgot to turn off the phone, and the ringtone interrupts your answer. In the case of webinars, there will be no such problem. No one interrupts, yawns, or embarrasses - at least you don't see this.

Of course, you can conduct classes on Skype or publish videos on YouTube, but the main disadvantage of such solutions is limited didactic opportunities and a low level of communication with the audience.

Course organizers and tutors will confirm that it can often be difficult to interest students with a regular lecture. A picture or video can sometimes tell more than a carefully prepared speech. This is where the webinar site can help - there are many functions that will make any lesson more exciting and help you focus on learning.

The benefits of online learning for the organizer

  • High efficiency through the use of convenient tools. First of all, these are presentations, tests, video, chat, screen display, and the ability to repeatedly review the lesson.
  • It’s easier to keep track of each student’s progress. Because training programs offer convenient tests and statistics for this. E-education saves money and is great for staff training. 
  • Especially in organizations where workers often take turns. Everyone can save, because you do not have to constantly pay a coach or rent a room, pay for accommodation.
  • You can conduct training from anywhere, but always look professional. 
  • No one is late for lectures - thanks to the mobile application, you can connect to the lesson even from a mobile.

The disadvantages of online learning for the organizer

  • First, each speaker must learn how to use the e-learning platform. Secondly, one must master the techniques of effectively conducting online seminars. Thirdly, it is definitely worth preparing each lesson, lecture or assignment also from a technical point of view. In addition, it is important that each teacher uses student retention techniques. Otherwise, they may simply fall asleep at the computer.
  • Due to the fact that you must be familiar with technical issues, you can lose experienced teachers. You will agree that the choice of equipment and a suitable platform for the courses can scare off the older generation of teachers.
  • On the other hand, anyone with a teacher's talent and a passion for learning can make a career. Creating your own e-learning course for distance learning takes less time than before. For courses choose different forms of material supply.
  • If you create small podcasts, it will not take much time. Links to them can be placed on your page or on YouTube
  • Conducting webinars or seminars online. To which you can invite even several thousand people at a time. On webinar sites, you can conduct lectures and practical exercises. Show students how to complete their actions. What works great is inviting students to speak in class.
  • Creating a program for teaching each student separately.
  • Email course. Where students receive information and material dosed in letters.

The benefits of e-learning for the student.

  • Online training makes it easy to choose not only a convenient time and place for training, but also your own pace.
  • It is easy to contact the teacher via chat, mail, forum or audio / video communications on a distance learning platform.
  • Many shy people find it easier to venture to study online courses. 
  • They don’t even have to use the camera to talk with the teacher.The opportunity to get an education for people with physical disabilities.

Cons of e-learning for a student

  • First of all, the student may lack personal contact with the teacher or other students.
  • It takes more time to understand materials and assignments during e-learning.
  • Some cannot concentrate during lectures. Because there is always the temptation to look into the social network or just close the browser tab.

Conclusion

Research on the effectiveness of online education is mixed. E-learning has some clear benefits. But he also has his own shortcomings, as, indeed, the traditional way of teaching. Most importantly, thanks to online education, course students can study effectively, conveniently and fairly cheaply.

If you also plan to introduce your own e-learning system, conduct webinars or online trainings, then first try the free versions of the top programs. We invite you to familiarize yourself with the capabilities of online education platforms.

Originally published May 2, 2019