Online Learning - Essay Example

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Online Learning 11th, March 2013 Online and classroom learning are core to education today. While learning institutions mainly employed classroom learning, today there is a shift to online learning, as classroom learning is being abandoned…
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Download file to see previous pages It is therefore, the responsibility of the instructors to ensure that classroom learning is as exciting and resourceful as the online learning. Various features, which result in successful classroom learning can be applied to online learning for effective educational outcomes. It is possible for online and classroom learning to result in positive educational outcomes, despite their different modes of presentation, only if instructors in both learning modes identify the learning needs of the students, and address them, while creating the best learning environment for students. According to Hirschy and Wilson (2002), online learning is not a new phenomenon today. However, this is infiltrating the educational system at a higher rate today compared to the past. Many policy makers in the education sector support online learning for a number of reasons. Most importantly, this mode of learning is quite cheap, compared to classroom learning. Since most learning institutions operate on strict budgets and look for ways of minimizing their expenditure, online learning would be more appropriate for them. Additionally, this is convenient for students, as they can learn from different regions without having to attend a class physically. Online learning started in the early 20th Century. Since then, this has been advancing slowly taking root in society (Moore, Dickson-Deane, & Galyen, 2011). Today, approximately 1.5 million schools in the US have adopted online learning. Online learning utilizes the internet, instead of a physical environment, and this can be adopted partially or wholly (Bakia, et al 2012). Instructor presence and interaction is paramount in classroom learning. If the instructor is present but does not interact with learners, it is impossible for learning to be successful (Mandernach, Gonzales & Garrett, 2006). Therefore, instructor interaction is a prerequisite for successful classroom learning. This also translates to the online learning, where both the presence of the instructor and instructor interaction need to be felt by the online learners for successful learning. These determine the nature of classroom setting in both online and classroom learning. The type of classroom setting is an important determinant of successful learning. In the online class however, it is more challenging to set a classroom environment (Mandernach, Gonzales & Garrett, 2006). This is because of the delivery mode involved, as it is based on technology, and not personal dynamics. Therefore, online instructors have the responsibility of ensuring that they meet this challenge, and develop a classroom setting in their online delivery. Instructors in online learning achieve this through engaging with the students more, either through online dialogs, discussions, and consultations. This inspires and motivates learners to work harder. Instructor presence and interaction has made online learning to be more successful in the recent past, compared to classroom learning. The US Department of Education acknowledges this in New York iSchool, where the approach has worked effectively (Bakia, et al 2012). Instructors in both online and classroom learning should engage their students in active learning. This guarantees them successful educational outcomes. In the classroom, an instructor should spare considerable time for the students to engage in discussions, group work, and various assessments. This allows for deeper learning for the ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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