- Students can "attend" a course at anytime, from anywhere.
- Online learning enables student-centered teaching approaches.
- Course material is accessible 24 hours a day 7 days a week.
- In an online environment, attendance to class is only evident if the student actually participates in classroom discussion. This increases student interaction and the diversity of opinion, because everyone gets a say, not just the most talkative.
- Using the internet to attend class, research information and communication with other students teaches skills in using technologies that will be critical to workers in the 21st century business community that works with colleagues globally and across time zones.
- Participating online is much less intimidating than "in the classroom." Anonymity provides students a level playing field undisturbed by bias caused by seating arrangement, gender, race and age. Students can also think longer about what they want to say and add their comments when ready. In a traditional class room, the conversation could have gone way past the point where the student wants to comment.
- Online classrooms also facilitate team learning by providing chatrooms and newsgroups for meetings and joint work. This eliminates the problems of mismatched schedules, finding a meeting location and distributing work for review between meetings.
- The online environment makes instructors more approachable. Students can talk openly with their teachers through online chats, email and in newsgroup discussions, without waiting for office hours that may not be convenient. This option for communication provides enhanced contact between instructors and students.
- Online learning let students attend class when fully awake and attend in increments of convenient time block, rather than rigid 2 or 4 hour stretches once or twice a week.
- Because there are no geographic barriers to online learning, students can find a diversity of course material that may not be available to them where they live or work.
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An online course might be right for you if:
- You are a self-motivated person and will take responsibility for your learning.
- You try to solve problems and work through difficulties independently with support from your professor and classmates.
- You are comfortable using a computer and have basic word processing, e-mail, and internet navigational skills.
Take the Distance Education Self-Assessment to find out more.
Look at the Interactive Information and Online Tools to find out more.