eLearning

Online learning is just as popular as traditional teaching

By July 17, 2012 No Comments

The debate as to whether eLearning development or old fashioned classroom sessions are more effective may rage over numbers, but end users are showing more appreciation and desire of online curricula options. Seeing as these courses are available whenever the student is ready to take them, flexibility and personal choice makes them feel more involved in the way they learn, leading to higher demand, especially in certain parts of the country.

These programs are particularly favored by those with a job to do apart from learning new skills, whether it's part of an in-house training program or they're pursuing higher education independent of their employer. Courses are available to them when and where students want, making custom training software more popular among corporations and other institutions where learning and education must take place at variable times.

The Massachusetts "experiment"

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) launched just such a flexible online course for public consumption, not only for those enrolled with the school but to outside participants as well. The point of this exercise, ZDNet reported, was to see if online course materials were not only as effective but as desired as traditional courses. The results were so optimistic, the source reported, that the school will soon look to expand its online offerings.

Phys.org reported that the number of people who signed up for the free class was greater than the entire enrolled student body for that semester at MIT. The course offered was just as difficult as any other the school offered, and while only about one-third passed the class as a whole, the enrollment consisted of students from over 160 different nations.

"It lets you pace yourself," said Anant Agarwal, the leader of the MIT project. He explained that various parts of course had different learning tools like PowerPoint presentations and hand-drawn images by actual professors, and that students could switch between learning methods if they felt one worked better than the other. It's that kind of ability to sculpt a learning experience, as well as the overall accessibility, that helps make these courses so popular.

The worldwide push

MIT isn't the only school seeing positive feedback about its eLearning development initiatives. Around the world, schools are calling for more technology and access to online educational tools, according to the Huffington Post.

Because not all students will have access to an accredited teacher but an increasing number will obtain or already own smartphone and mobile computer technology, these tools are much easier to use for delivering teaching experiences. Even in areas with low incomes like the Silicon Valley Flex School in California uses primarily eLearning development in order to provide educational experiences to students because the local school district can't afford to employ traditional teachers in the first place, according to the Huffington Post.

Researchers Michael Horn and Clayton Christensen told the news source that students of all nations can benefit from integrating online experiences in hybrid learning environments, boosting global awareness while learning about other cultures even if they aren't in an impoverished area themselves.

This proves to these researchers, as well as those in charge of the project at MIT, that this eLearning development is a winning strategy. Consumers want online education and will seek it out from all corners of the globe – bridging cultural and language divides. Other businesses can have this sort of drive with employee learning as well by contacting CSE Software Inc. for more information on how similar custom training software can be developed to fit your company's needs and deliver targeted teaching to employees.

Contact Stacey Burris at sburris@csesoftware.com or 1.309.670.7595 and ask for an eLearning demo today!