In today's society, online classes and face to face classes are equally existing. The most popular question is whether online classes provide the same quality instruction as face to face classes. Deciphering between the two could be tough, but each choice has its advantages and disadvantages. Of course people think differently about education. Some believe that taking traditional classes is a better way of learning, but I personally believe that online classes are far more enjoyable and successful than face to face classes. Face to face classes are more traditional than online classes; however, the benefits of online classes like flexibility, cost and discipline/ self- motivation towers over face to face classes.
A benefit to attending an online class is flexibility. This is a great choice for people that have families and hectic schedules. Learning online gives students the enjoyment of doing their work at their own pace. “In a traditional classroom setting, students are expected to attend class when the class meets, and attendance usually comprises part of their grade,” says Hickey, a Peterson's research educator. Rather than being required to attend a eight am class every other day, students are able to choose when they want to study. Every assignment has due dates, but online classes can maneuver around occupied schedules as opposed to face to face classes. There are many options like: driving to work while listening to a lecture video, eating breakfast while doing discussion boards, studying sections and chapters on lunch break, or even taking practice tests while preparing dinner. Students could even do their work while traveling the world! Online students are not forced to log into video discussions at a certain time, but are able to go back and watch it to obtain all the information that is needed. The My College Guide Blog states, “Studies show that learning in shorter bursts is actually better than long study sessions because it promotes retention and genuine understanding.” Online classes are for students that does not have five hours of time to sit down and study, but can fit studying in throughout their daily schedule.
In addition to being flexible, online learning can be more can also be more cost efficient than face-to-face classes. Ed Vosganian, founder and CEO of college funding 123, says,“There are not many personal expenses when attending an online university versus a traditional college campus. Usually, everything in an online university cost is included.” In saying that, Online degrees cost as little as eighty times less than traditional degrees, because tuition and fees for online classes are greatly lower than face to face classes fees. For example, at the University of Southern Mississippi tuition is $8,108 a year for an in state student and $10,108 for an out of state student. Room and board is $9,980 a year. Personal expenses are around $2140 a year. Transportation is estimately $1,430. Books and supplies are around the cost of $2,000 for 5 classes. As stated before, traditional face-to-face classes are very expensive. Over forty-five percent of the college student population says that cost is a very important factor (My College Guide 3). While studying online, students don't have to pay the cost of housing and transportation. They also avoid the meal plan and room and board fees since they are living off campus while attending the class. However, you do have to pay the cost of the class, book fee, and a few other items that contribute to the class.
Another thing to consider before taking traditional classes is level of self discipline. This means that you do not have to wait to be told what to do. “Both online and face to face classes require self discipline to succeed, but there can be significant differences in how learning is structured. These structural differences can have a significant effect on student's ability to stay on track,” says Erstad, a marketing specialist at College Education. This helps for future purposes, because you have to stay focused on deadlines without someone physically keeping you on track of them. Elaine Allen, an online instruction expert, says, “Students who take online courses need to be very self motivated.” All college classes require students to focus and keep up with deadlines and assignments, but some students may struggle to stay focused and motivated while learning from home instead of a classroom. Students tend to get comfortable and forget when they have assignments due. This can either make or break them. The optimum students develop certain strategies to follow in order to help them succeed in their classes. They tend to have certain times and days set up specifically for studying and completing work. Believe it or not, online classes require responsibility and a higher level of self discipline than face to face classes.
Traditional face to face classes also have a few advantages.“Generally speaking, Face to face classes is the best alternative for students who have a little more time on their hands,” says Erstad. These classes add flexibility in their scheduling by offering night classes. Students that take face to face classes also have more chances to be reminded of upcoming assignments. This helps students that tend to procrastinate. Traditional classes have a self discipline method of routine schedules and waking up on time for class (although many students still tend to miss class). Despite the technological approach in online classes, traditional education is still the better option for those kinesthetic students who thrive on face to face learning. Sadly, Traditional classes are too expensive and require too much time and activity.
Online and traditional institutions both have their advantages, but it is clear that online classes are ultimately the better choice. Seventy-seven percent of educators believe that online learning is just as good as traditional learning if not better. Almost 5.8 million people are enrolled in online classes. When it comes to college, online education is on the rise and will continue to grow in numbers.
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