What is Distance Learning and What Benefits Does it Provide?

Distance Learning Courses & Benefits

Distance learning is a way for students to learn remotely without having to have regular face-to-face contact with their tutors/teachers in a classroom environment. This means that students can still engage with learning materials that are provided by the educational institute they are signed up to from the comfort of their own home or while they are at work.

You can attend / sign up for a high quality full time course at any point, no matter where you are. It is a great learning experience and the course materials that will be given to you to learn is high quality.

How ‘Online Education’ Works

Students who are part of a distance learning program usually have all their learning materials sent straight to them and are mainly accessed via the Internet. This means that students must have a reliable Internet connection to be able to engage in and complete their course. Some educational institutes may be able to send physical packages but mostly it is done over the Internet so to be eligible and to get the best out of the course students should bear this in mind.

Tutorial support for students can be provided by a virtual learning environment, email, telephone and other electronic means. There may also be face-to-face meetings with tutors and occasional attendance at the institution may be required but this means that travel isn’t necessary all the time. This means that students who can’t afford to live close to the university / college, or travel to the institute, can save money and still keep up with their course.

learning web

The Benefits of ‘Distance Education’

Save Money

Usually distance learning programs are much more affordable than those that require you to be on campus. Also, if you are living at home you end up saving even more money as you are not just paying less for your course but you won’t have to worry about moving into a new place and paying accommodation fees.

Inspiration

Another advantage of distance learning is that this may encourage you to motivate yourself more as there are no tutors that you see regularly. Finding motivation for yourself is an incredibly useful skill and can be used in many other applications. Once you have created your learning environment and you have learnt to control it, self-motivation will start to develop and will inspire you to learn for your own personal growth.

Some may argue that the absence of tutors may cause people to feel less motivated as they don’t have anyone to push them if they aren’t pulling their weight enough. In some cases this may be true but if you have your heart set on a course and it is truly what you want to be doing then motivation to complete it should come naturally.

woman distance learning

Learn at Your Own Pace

Some people may find it intimidating to go back to a classroom environment and they may be more comfortable working from home at their own pace. Distance learning programs allow this prospect as there are deadlines set but no face-to-face interactions. This means that as long as the work is completed on time it can be done however and whenever the student decides.

You can also set your own time to study so if there are any commitments you have such as work or family, so you can make sure that your course works around these. You can study as much or as little as you want whenever you want as long as you complete your study material within the time set by your tutors.

If you have questions about the work or you want to discuss deadlines most distance learning programs provide discussion forums and chat facilities too so you don’t have to worry about travelling to talk in person.

Easy Access

If you find it difficult to attend regular classes due to commitments or distance then distance learning can be the best option for you. You will be able to access material via post or if you have a computer with a steady Internet connection (which you most likely will) meaning that travel is unnecessary.

While some people still use the postal option, most students nowadays find it much easier to access their materials online as pretty much everybody has a computer with access to the Internet. It is much easier to keep up with work using this option too as work is updated instantly and you don’t have to wait for it to arrive in the post. This means you can get on with it as soon as it is available on your online program.

If you end up using online learning means to access your study, you can also install video conferencing software, such as Skype and Microsoft Teams, that will allow you to talk face-to-face with your tutors if you feel that you need any questions or queries answered.

online education family illustration

Work While You Study

Many students who apply for distance education already have jobs that they don’t want to give up for higher education. In some cases, they can’t afford to give up their jobs as it is their only form of income. Distance education is really helpful when this is the case as it allows students to stay at home and keep going to work. Also, as mentioned earlier students can make their own learning schedule to work around their job commitments.

Communicate With Other Institutions

While learning from home, you could even get in touch with several other e-schools through the use of video conferencing software. This means that you can connect with other students that are located apart from you and could be anywhere in the world. You can share your experiences and work together to solve problems and get through work that you might not be able to complete alone.

Because you can talk to students from all over the world, you can use this as a method to improve your interactive skills by working with those from different environments and cultures.

Is Distance Learning Applicable For Government Jobs?

Distance Learning

Introduction

Distance learning is a method of formal education in which students and teachers do not meet physically in colleges, universities or schools. Instead, it is done remotely with the help of internet, electronic communication and mail. It is also known as online learning or distance education or e-learning.

Before enrolling for e-learning to get a certificate, a diploma or a degree in any learning institution, students have to face confusion of its validity in the UK government jobs. The main reason for this is the taboo surrounding and the incorrect impression given to the online education programs.

These programs have gained a bad reputation for lack of good quality education standards and failure to give decent distance education degrees, diplomas and certificates. According to the learners, the value of education should be directly proportional to the return on investment.

Distance learning sometimes applies, and sometimes it is not applicable for government jobs. The main determinants for this include;

Legality of the learning institution,

Brand of the learning institution,

Deploying department,

Degree or the diploma,

Certificate program one is pursuing.

Distance Learning Can Be Applicable For Government Jobs

Man ready for work in city place
Business Ready

Online education applies for government jobs if the graduate owns a recognized diploma, degree or certificate from a college. (an example: Oxford Learning College) Validation of documents helps to give you an opportunity to work for the government. The department of education in the UK is responsible for granting recognition to all the higher learning institutions. This is so that the students can have demand for their careers in the government job market.

Flexibility Of Job And Work

During the learning process, there is flexibility since they can do school assignments online as they work in their respective offices. It gives them more work experience than those on a regular basis (hence the government can consider them to work). Since the UK has established an online learning system in their institutions, students find it much easier. They find it easier since they can plan their lessons well as they work.

The choice of the institution for online learning is important in influencing government employment, alongside career progression for those already working in government institutions. It is evident that online learners have more experience than those regular students. This is because they do apply skills as they work, hence becoming more competent.

Distance Learning May Not Be Applicable For Government Jobs

Learners may want to acquire employment after education; however, this is not always the case for some surrounding factors. Despite its affordability, flexibility and convenience, online education does not favor government jobs. They believe students are not that competent and experienced because of higher chances of distraction, lack of quality faculty members and complication in technology.

This leads to questionable credibility of the diplomas or degrees.

Degrees and diplomas from regular institutions will have more validity and market than online education. Because of this, some government jobs demand only regular higher education university diplomas and degrees. Moreover, some courses, (especially technical subjects) are not compatible with the online learning mode. They require a professional, such as a tutor to physically teach them.

Such courses may not be applicable in government jobs.

Conclusion

Learners must test whether their online credentials are ideal for their career progression or targeted job. Students should work hard to balance online learning and practice what they have learnt in an online class to be considered in government jobs. The institution should also have been approved by the government. Thus meaning the students don’t face challenges while searching for jobs in the long run period.

How ‘Credible’ Are Online Degrees Within the Industry?

Respected Online Degrees

Online education has had a rise in popularity and it’s development. Recently, not many places would accept online degrees as a valid alternative, in recent years, however, traditional and residential institutions have started to offer many online courses increasing the popularity of online study and giving better access to higher education.

Do employees respect Online Degrees?

Over the last decade, the majority of employers from most industries are now beginning to embrace online education. This is mainly due to the number of trusted schools and universities now offering these online degree programs. Online education is now considered the norm for a lot of employers and online course enrollment is on the climb for the 10th year in a row with no signs of slowing down any time soon.

What employers are wanting to see in an online degree is the accreditation of the university or learning institution, the quality of its graduates, alongside its reputation. While there are some employers that still don’t recognise online degrees, these are minimal when compared to the rest of the industry.

The Department of Education states that “students in online conditions performed modestly better, on average than those learning the same material through traditional face-to-face instruction.” They also found that “the effectiveness of online learning approaches appears quite broad across different content and learner types.”

These statements back up the claim by universities that online degrees are just as good as those that take place in classroom environments. In some cases, online education courses can have better outcomes than those taking place on campus. Also, online courses can allow students who are limited due to where they live, the time they have on their hands and the opportunities available to them to obtain the qualifications they desire as well as helping them to learn and develop.

We did an article on how ‘effective’ online education really is, you can see it here.

Finding a Respected Online Degree

Education on phone

If you’re planning to do an online course instead of university then you should consider these points when choosing your online degree:

The reputation of the university or institute itself

If they have a physical campus they are usually viewed as more ‘credible’. You should be careful applying to courses that are not offered by a respected institute as they may not be as credible and you could be turned away by employers.

How quickly can you receive a degree

You need to be careful when applying for an online degree as there are some out there that may catch you out. Some courses advertise that you can pass within a couple of months but usually, these are not seen as credible by most employers and they may not teach you everything you need to learn.

Accreditation of the university or institute

For employers, accreditation is essential for an institute to be credible to them. When choosing a degree to pursue, you must make sure that the University or Institute you will be doing it through has been accredited by the British Council of Education.

Quality of the graduates

When pursuing your career, make sure that you research what employers in your desired industry think of graduates from the institute you will be doing your degree with. For example, research topics like job placement rates to help you determine graduate quality.

How Employers Evaluate Online Degrees

The majority of businesses nowadays see online degrees provided by institutions that are well-known as being equivalent to those that are earned on-campus. If you choose to do an online degree that isn’t provided by an institution, most businesses are familiar with (or the institution isn’t known for its quality of graduates) then your degree may not be seen as equivalent or ‘hold the same value’.

Employers are also more likely to accept an online degree from a university that provides on-site courses with online learning. Most businesses agree that online degrees provided by a well-known institute are just as favourable as on-site courses. This isn’t the case when it comes to degrees that are operated by institutes that are solely online, even if they are accredited.

This reason for this is because most employers believe that well-known institutions and universities dedicate the same time and attention to developing online courses as they do for those held on-site. Those that operate online only are usually seen as unreliable or just not good enough.

How to Sell Your Online Degree to Employers

searching for the right employee

More employers than ever are beginning to agree that online degrees are reputable and a good alternative to traditional degree programs. If you are close to completing your online degree or you have already done so, you should know the right way to display your education to get the best results. Even though online courses are becoming more acceptable, it is still a good idea to be mindful of how you describe your education so that it comes across in the most positive way possible.

To those that may be unfamiliar with online degrees or the value of them, you can mention a few things to help describe your education and how online degrees stand up to traditional ones.

First of all, you should mention the skills you have learnt. This can be anything from time management to techniques you have learnt and given in appropriate detail. You should also show industry-accepted accreditation and trade qualifications you have earned through the course as well as any hands-on experience if you have any.

If you had any mentoring partnerships or workshops that you participated in through the course you should also mention these as they can help your case. Showing that you have experience is the key and most employers, even if they aren’t familiar with the value of online courses, will respect the qualifications that you have earned.

A final point to note is that you should embrace what makes an online degree different from other programs. You could point out that to finish an online degree you need good time management, organisational skills and a motivated personality to ensure that you keep on top of the workload.

These are all traits that employers look for when considering hiring someone. Overall, you should be able to show how your online degree has contributed to your ability to learn and work independently. You should explain to your potential employers that the challenges you have faced through online education are exactly the reason you are ready for the job.

Is distance learning something we should consider?

Distance Learning

What is ‘Distance Learning’? Is there any future for it?

Well, ‘Distance Learning’ is where a student studies a course online / remotely without the inclusion of face-to-face learning or a tutor being present in the ‘classroom’. The materials and units are produced by the university or college and sent to the student. If students are needing technical support, it will be sent through a virtual learning environment, phone, email etc. This depends on the university/college.

Even though the learning is done online and remotely, there will be the occasional face-to-face meetings. Future studies in the course and any other important details will be said here.

Is there any future for it? Well, a quarter of a million students are taking the first-degree course through a distance learning programme / online study (part-time and full time). The number is still growing at a fairly fast pace. Statistically, there will be a future for online courses and online learning.

Does ‘Distance Learning’ have value?

Distance Learning in the majority of cases has a lot of value. Of course, a factor involved is where you live. Within the UK, if you do choose to study online, a lot of the time it does have value, though it can depend on the course and experience. You can even use ‘Distance Learning’ in an open university.

Once completing a university course on ‘Distance Learning’, it will be very much like a regular and valid degree. The only difference is that you study through ‘virtual classrooms’, and at your own pace.

How is ‘Distance Learning’ transforming higher education?
Woman in headphones learning in her own environment.

‘Distance Learning’ is, in fact, transforming higher education. Well, let’s say you’re in a remote area/village with internet access or a student who wants to study an American course within the EU. Students who wouldn’t have a chance can study the course in the comfort of their own home anywhere, anytime in the world, giving a huge range of opportunities for everyone.

Universities offer excelling services to prepare students for bachelors and degrees online, and they’re working. Online studies need to suit your needs for your learning, and this is the key to ‘Distance Learning’. Higher educations want you to go a little extra for the benefits that suit you.

Why is ‘Distance Learning’ good?

‘Distance Learning’ is good and has many benefits, more than what you would think. It has some downsides, but very few that the benefits overrule it. You can study whenever you feel, not have to travel to a classroom, save on a lot of money/tuition fees and study at your own pace.

Flexible Study Time

Saving Time and Money

Saving time is important, especially when you are really busy. Doing this, you have the luxury of studying when you want, without being scheduled at a classroom. It’s almost like two lives, you can study whilst being with your friends and family, or even study while earning. Since online learning has been designed especially for your mobile, you can watch videos and learn on the go like in the subway, or on your break at work.

You get to decide when you want to log on to your course(s) and not have to worry about finding your classroom. You can use the time of finding your classroom to study!

Be Conservative On Money

Whilst saving time is important, everyone would like to save on money. Taking a ‘Distance Learning’ course costs much less than doing a course in person. For example, Nottingham Trent University online courses cost at €4,000 per year, whilst a normal course at Nottingham Trent University costs €14,500 per year (internationally).

You are saving €10,500 and this is just the tuition fee. Imagine adding on the travel costs, student visas, place of stay, this would cost much more. You get the same degree by going there and studying online, so if you’re international, I’d recommend studying online!

Study at Your Own Pace

Taking an online course means you can take your time and learn at your own pace. This is handy, especially for those who are stressed out a lot with work, or even the course itself. It allows you to be more calm with your work and deny the stress that would come into play if you went in person. This can be helpful for those who can’t deal with stress too well, consider ‘Distance Learning’!

What Is Distance Learning?

What is Distance Learning?

Distance learning is a way of learning remotely without being in regular face-to-face contact with a teacher in the classroom. In the UK such learning has its roots in students learning through correspondence courses, although lately that’s changed to be more about learning via online portals directly to the university or college.

What is the difference between online and distance learning?

In a nutshell, it used to be that the key difference between online learning and distance learning is geography. Students can be together with an instructor and use online learning, but distance learning implies that students and instructor are separated. However nowadays most distance learning courses are offered via online portals, so actually the two terms are now synonymous.

What are the benefits of distance learning?

The advantages of distance learning include the following: Flexible study hours. Students can study in their own time – after working hours, for a few hours during the day or over weekends. This means that studies can fit around regular responsibilities, without sacrificing time for work, family or learning. Most often people using distance learning institutions have families or full time jobs, or even both!

What is a distance learning system?

A good example would be like the ones on offer from Oxford Learning College – online portals, downloadable pdfs, or hard copies of course materials: you choose which system is best for you. Study at home in your own time, and Skype or Chat to tutors at the college on a regular basis to keep you on-track.

Why is distance learning better?

The main advantage of studying through Distance Learning is often felt by those people who are a little older and who would struggle to fit actually attending a college or university into their lifestyle and commitments.

Is distance learning flexible?

Yes, it’s very flexible: you can earn and study at the same time! Flexibility is the biggest advantage of distance learning courses. For those who had to take a break from studies to start working, such courses are a boon and provide the opportunity to pursue higher education.

Is distance learning identical to online learning?

Nowadays the two terms are becoming much closer together, and in some cases would be considered as synonymous terms. This is because most distance learning happens in an online format now.

What is online distance learning?

Distance education or long-distance learning is the education of students who may not always be physically present at a school. Traditionally, this usually involved correspondence courses wherein the students corresponded with the school via post. Today it involves online education.

Is Oxford learning college accredited?

Oxford Learning College is one of the world’s leading distance education providers. They work with or are affiliated with a great many highly respected education partners to provide quality home study courses. These courses are very varied, but do include A-Levels and Accredited Diplomas worldwide.

How can I study well at home?

  • Stick to a schedule. After planning out when the best times are for you to work, follow through and stick to it.
  • Understand what you’re learning.
  • Use flash cards.
  • Rewrite your notes.
  • Take breaks.
  • Test yourself.
  • Avoid cramming.

How can I focus on studying at home?

  • Find a quiet workspace away form other distractions and make it into your study space.
  • Pace.
  • Create a plan to study for 45 minutes, and then take a 15-minute break.
  • Simplify notes to few words. Then, on the test, it’s easy to expand on concepts.
  • Don’t keep re-reading the same notes.

How do you prepare for distance learning?

  • Get prepared and make a plan that suits you, as distance learning is self-paced.
  • Organise your study space. There’s no right or wrong place to study – if it works for you, that’s great.
  • Get familiar with your course pages.
  • Discover your learning style.
  • Set study goals.
  • Review your work regularly.
  • Ask for help if you get stuck.
  • Stay motivated.

How can distance learning be successful?

  • Set a fixed time to engage in the course work.
  • Do not rush through your work.
  • Take the time to ask questions and engage instructors.
  • Explore the technology being used in advance of having to use it.
  • If in a collaborative environment, choose your colleagues or project partners carefully.

How can I succeed online learning?

  • Develop a Sense of Self-Motivation.
  • Utilize All Resources.
  • Understand Degree Program Availability.
  • Establish Proficiency Using Technological Software.
  • Be Able to Manage Your Time Effectively.
  • Start Out Small.
  • Proofread Everything You Submit.
  • Use Downtime Wisely.

What Makes a Successful Online Learner?

  • Persistence is perhaps the biggest key to success in online learning.
  • Effective Time-Management Skills.
  • Effective and Appropriate Communication Skills.
  • Basic Technical Skills.
  • Reading and Writing Skills.
  • Motivation and Independence.
  • A Good Study Environment.

Is online college easier?

Online classes are no easier than classes offered in the traditional classroom setting and in some cases can actually be more difficult. There are several reasons for this. Online courses require more self-motivation, and of course you’re managing your home/family and an existing job too while you’re studying. It can actually be much harder to study at home, and most employers will recognise the extra effort you’ve gone to.

Is distance education valuable?

All degrees are equal value, and employers will give you credit for making the effort and studying in your own time while either still working or raising a family, so there’s no reason to think your new qualifications won’t be valued.

How does a distance learning work?

At undergraduate level distance learning usually means students engaging with learning materials at home or work. These materials are produced by the university, college or learning provider and are either sent directly to the student or more usually today accessed via the internet.

Studying at home – transferable skills

When you’re studying for an undergraduate or career qualification you will become an expert in your chosen subject. Whatever course you choose to study, you’ll also find that you develop a wealth of transferable skills – this is even true of online courses where you study in your own time at home.

These oft-forgotten ‘bonus’ skills make you a better student while you’re still studying, and equip you for work in almost any industry or profession. You don’t have to actually attend a University or College to develop these additional skills and qualities, and they’ll be with you for life too.

1. Time management

Perhaps the most obvious skill you’ll develop as a part-time student. After you’ve been juggling work, family, deadlines and research for a few years, a few home-learning projects and targets are a piece of cake.

2. Organisation

Closely linked to time management, organisation skills are essential for all part-time students. If you can prove that you can handle the pressure of working on several tasks at the same time, you’ll get ahead in any career. Make sure your CV lists both Organisation and Time Management as key skills too – don’t be modest, make sure you’re claiming credit for your new abilities!

3. Research

A highly-valued skill across many professions; if you know how to find sources of accurate and reliable information to use in projects and reports, you’ll quickly become a valuable team member.

4. Presenting ideas

In almost every job, there comes a time when a presentation or report is required. If you’re already a pro at disseminating ideas into an easily-digestible format (like a written assignment or report) then you’re already there.

5. Reasoning

This is one skill that you’ll naturally develop whatever subject you’re studying, whether you’re evaluating a resource or researching a topic. The ability to weigh up the pros and cons of a project, client or product are invaluable in any workplace.

6. Decision-making

You might not realise it, but every assignment is the product of hundreds of small decisions, e.g. your choice of words, argument, resources etc. After you’ve ‘practised’ with your latest essay, it’s easy to apply this skill to larger workplace decisions.

7. Persuasion

You don’t have to pursue a career in sales or business to need persuasion skills; they’re important in many day-to-day workplace meetings. As a student you’ll naturally develop them as you build your case in essays and discussions.

8. Overcoming obstacles

There’s probably not a single student out there that hasn’t encountered an obstacle along the way, be it a bad grade, a dull topic or confusion around a subject. It might seem hard at the time but the skills you develop as you overcome each obstacle are invaluable.

9. Commitment

One of the most obvious skills a part-time student gains; choosing to give up some of your free time to gain a valuable qualification shows any future or current employer that you’re passionate and committed to your own development.

10. Self-motivation

The ability to keep your passion and motivation going after several years of part-time study is a really difficult skill, and not one that should be underestimated. A potential employer looking at your CV is sure to value this.

11. Confidence

Part-time study is often a personal journey, with students growing in confidence the more they conquer difficult topics and learn to express themselves in discussions and reports. It might not be a quantifiable skill, but it’ll shine through in interviews.

12. Problem solving

This skill features on many CVs, but it’s a difficult one to prove. Part-time students can often cite a number of problems they had to overcome while they studied e.g. a difficult topic, a hard-to-meet deadline or a confusing module.

13. Listening

An underappreciated skill, students will develop this naturally as they listen to their one-on-one time with tutors and support. This is a great skill for managing others, or just for working as part of a team.

Next time you’re updating your CV, make sure you’ve included all of the above as your key skills – after all, your successful studying is living proof that you’ve earned the right to claim those skills, so why not make use of them!

 

Alternatives to University

Congratulations! You’ve finished your A levels/BTEC and now you can be relieved knowing that you have no more work to do… except you do because you now have the problem of figuring out what to do next. You may have thought about uni and although it is appealing to many, there are those who don’t wish to take the risk of debt that they may not be able to pay off or who just are tired of education and want to just get on with their lives and so forth. So to those who think that university is not for them then this is the place to be as we will be giving you plenty of other options to take now that you’re college days are over.

Gap Year

The first one we will discuss is taking a gap year as it is more advantageous to do this sooner rather than later. Taking a gap year can give you time to sort things out and figure out what it is you want to do in life and you can learn some valuable new skills and experience new things. Gap years can be taken by anyone and for varying amounts of time depending on how long it takes you to figure out what you want to do. Many individuals travel and get jobs in foreign countries to experience new things and ways of life and to explore while they can. Trips like these will require planning and goals will need to be set to ensure that you don’t just waste your time in these places on mundane things. Taking a gap year can help individuals to develop skills that employers might want in certain fields and they can also increase somebody’s self confidence, independance and can give experience of working abroad.

Entry-level Job

Entry-level jobs dont require potential employees to have gained professional qualifications and are therefore popular among school and college leavers who don’t want to educate themselves further and just want to start making money. Some entry-level jobs don’t even require people to have work experience in the given field as they can learn while doing the job. Some entry-level jobs can be full-time and permanent whereas some may only be temporary contracts or part-time which can be a disadvantage to some.

There are three main types of entry-level jobs which are traineeships, apprenticeships and employer-designed school leaver programmes. Traineeships usually consisit of a short course which can last up to six months and then work experience that prepares an individual for apprenticeship or work and is usually unpaid. Apprenticeships are a combination of paid work and study that goes towards gaining a formal qualification. Employer-designed school leaver programmes consist of paid work with training which eventually leads to a professional qualificaiton.

After several promotions individuals can possibly earn more money in any of these entry-level jobs.

Sponsored Degree

A sponsored degree can be a good alternative to people who worry about the expenses of going to university. This is because they usually involve a company that supports you while you study for approximately three years depending on the course with full salaries or annual bursaries. These companies may also cover an individual’s tuition fees meaning that the student leaves universtity without any debt. Because of the pay these degrees have been likened to apprenticeships and because of this have been referred to as degree apprenticeships.

An advantage of these degrees is that as well as the funding and support from the employees but usually the student will have a guaranteed job upon graduation. Through a sponsored degree an individual may also get the opportunity to learn from those who already work at the company. A sponsored degree is seen as a contract between you and the employer and because of this they will expect something in return, meaning that a student may end up working when on breaks from universtity or when time off is available. If this degree  peaks your interest then you should get researching companies that are local to you and see if any of them offer a degree such as this.

Self-employment

If you already specialise in something or have a good idea for a business and know how to put a plan in place then you could become self-employed and work for yourself. This means you will have flexible hours and work independantly meaning no chance of being made redundant and the potential for a higher slaray because most of the money will be going straight back into the business and then yourself after wages if you have anyone employed.

It will be a struggle and no matter what there will always be the chance for it to fail and then you could end up losing out on a lot of money and waste a lot of time. This can be very stressful and you won’t receive any sick or holiday pay as you don’t have an employer that is required to approve these. Also, irregular income can make paying taxes and bills awkward and you could end up working more hours than typical people just to make ends meet.

Sources

https://www.savethestudent.org/student-jobs/what-are-the-alternatives-to-university.html

https://www.prospects.ac.uk/applying-for-university/alternatives-to-university

Flexible Learning – is it just a catchphrase?

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Is flexible learning just the latest trendy catchphrase, or is it the real deal? What does it even mean, and how are colleges around the UK proving that they offer it?

We live in an increasingly instant world, with access to more knowledge at our fingertips than at any other time in recorded history. Instead of seeing this new information age as a threat, some UK higher and further education learning centres are determined to embrace it and use it as a way to help their students.

Online learning and online courses continue to grow in popularity and in the numbers provided, and there are more students than ever before willing to take advantage. This increase in home learning is primarily due to one factor – flexibility, and flexible learning is quite definitely here to stay.

Part of living in the age we do is that it isn’t just information we expect to have at our fingertips – it’s everything. We demand instant access, results and the opportunity for our lives to be lived in that instant. Online learning offers that heady mix of instant access and flexibility that we’re now hard wired to expect from the world.

Think about it. If you could study at home, in your own time, to suit your own timetable, around your other lifestyle commitments, and in the comfort of your own space – why on earth would you ever leave and go back to the world of traditional brick and mortar college buildings and class times ever again?

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If the courses offered are a great mix of vocational learning courses plus the full range of traditional GCSEs and A Levels, coupled with being available online to suit your students’ needs, then surely you’re onto a winning combination.

That’s what Oxford Learning College have managed to accomplish and their winning formula is attracting new and returning students in record numbers year on year.

Want to learn anything from Ancient History, Psychology, Sociology and Biology through to Accountancy, Business Studies and Health Care and beyond? Look no further than the flexible range of online courses available and prepare to learn and study in a whole new way.

Night owl? No problem. Access your unique course materials online at any time to suit you, including 2am in the morning if that’s what you prefer. Flexible Learning at it’s finest – while others are scrambling to catch up, Oxford Learning College have been leading the way for years.

(Source: https://www.oxfordcollege.ac/ )

Online Learning and its Advantages

 Is online learning beneficial?

The benefits of online learning include:

  • Convenience- One of the benefits is the convenience as you don’t have to be in the same room as the teacher so you have the convenience that you can use a phone, tablet, laptop, computer to learn from wherever you are so you don’t have to travel to be in a classroom.
  • Flexible- Online learning helps those trying to balance family, work and education. With online learning, they don’t have to worry about being in class which means you can move your learning time to fit around your life.
  • Affordable- Online learning is affordable as you don’t have to spend money on fuel, childcare expenses or even meals as the learning takes place in your own home(or where ever you want it to). You don’t have to commute to school and students can have discussions without having to be in the same room. A computer and internet access is the only thing you need which is a small cost compared to
  • Own pace learning- As the learning is done online the learning can be done as fast or as slow as you want as the work is available all the time online.
  • Fun and easy- With online learning, teachers can invite guests into their classes to help demonstrate key points. This would make the learning more fun, however, these lessons could only be viewed through the use of the right platform – so make sure you’ve got the right technology to get the best learning experience.
  • Enhance interaction- Online learning gives students a chance to interact with their teachers compared to students in the classroom. This offers shy or introverted students a chance to participate in discussions with ease rather than in class sessions. Some shyer students have reported that online courses are simpler to focus on as they’re not distracted by anyone. Online learning is also beneficial to teachers as it allows them to know more about each student or his or her learning patterns than they would in their classes.

How effective is online learning?

It improves the self discipline of the student as they have to organise their own study time being in charge of their learning. The exams have shown this to be effective as the students have achieved better or similar scores to traditional students, partly because they have more time they choose to study in.

Being able to learn anywhere makes it effective as you don’t need to waste time commuting to the school/college and that time can be used to study more.

What courses can I learn Online?

With Oxford Learning College there are many courses you can study ranging in grade from iGCSE to A level, Level 1, Level 2, Level 3 diplomas and BTEC HND. The courses can be anything from Psychology to childcare and zoology. More courses and information can be found on the website here- https://www.oxfordcollege.ac/news/courses/

How does online/distance learning work?

Studying online can offer you greater flexibility, making it easier for you to study without disrupting your personal and professional life.

Much of your teaching will be in the form of video lectures and we break these down into relatively short episodes to help you to be flexible in planning your studies. All of the videos are available when you start your course and you can watch and re-watch them whenever you wish.

 

Campus Learning Vs Online Learning

Pros and Cons of Learning on Campus

Campus-based education is more of a traditional University experience and can help an individual to learn independence and much more. Students will have a chance to live away from home with other people roughly the same age as them and they will also have a chance to join unions and other groups which may help them make friends and create bonds. There are advantages and disadvantages to learning on campus however and we will be discussing a few of each below:

Advantages

  • The first advantage of campus based learning we will be discussing is social interaction. If a student goes to University, especially in an area they are not familiar with, it will help them to meet new people and make new friends increasing their social circle and activity. It will also mean that they have more people they can rely on and spend time with to keep them on the path to success.
  • A second advantage to campus learning is face-to-face interaction with one’s peers. When on campus, a student who may need help or doesn’t fully understand something can just simply discuss it with their tutor or lecturer and they will help as best they can to ensure that the student has the best understanding and therefore best chance of passing with good grades. This can also be done one-on-one meaning less distractions and more personal involvement.
  • The structure that campus-based learning sets is also a good advantage to anyone who gets into University. Many students find it much easier to get on top of their work if there is a set structure they can follow and there are deadlines they can work to instead of self-pacing themselves meaning that work is handed in on time and in most cases without panic.
  • Another advantage of learning on campus is that there are usually various types of facilities and extra-curricular activities that students can get involved with. Students on campus have access to labs, libraries, sports and gym facilities, social clubs and much more.
  • The final advantage we will discuss is that there are a wider range of courses and degrees you have access to by choosing to study on campus. This is because many subjects actually require the physical presence of students due to experiments in laboratories and other such activities that may be required to pass the course.

Disadvantages

  • Learning on campus usually requires the student or their parents to be willing to pay a lot of money for them to stay and live there as well as attend the course they want to study. Even with student finance helping out, student’s will attain a copious amount of debt that they will have to pay back when they start earning money.
  • Students may become homesick and may find it hard to study away from home or from family meaning that they could possibly fail the course they are attending.
  • Learning on campus can be a huge waste of money to those who come away with nothing and as such is one of the main reasons online courses are becoming more popular.

Pros and Cons of Learning Online

With recent advancements of technology and through the power of the Internet many new alternatives have arisen for those who want to learn at higher education levels without having to pay a 5 figure fee. It comes as no surprise that many people are flocking to these instead of applying to live and study on campus’ that may be far away from home and family and may not be worth the time or hassle of certain individuals. Here are a few advantages and disadvantages for learning online as opposed to on campus:

Advantages

  • Online courses are generally cheaper manly due to not having to pay maintenance and living costs when living on campus.
  • Online courses can be finished a lot quicker than those on campus as it is up to the individual to pace themselves most of the time and they can choose when to complete and hand in work as opposed to waiting for certain modules to be started.
  • Students can work in an environment that is familiar and comfortable for them meaning that they are less likely to be stressed and if so they can turn to family members or friends.
  • Students learning from home can develop self-discipline and responsibility skills as the power is in their hands for them to maintain work schedules and keep up with set work.
  • No commute is required for online courses as the work can be done without having to leave the house.
  • A final advantage for online courses are that there are more choices for course topics as an individual is not limited to the courses offered by one University that they may have gotten into. They have the freedom to choose exactly what course they want to focus on and students need not worry about where they want to go as they can just choose the course for which fits them best.

Disadvantages

  • No one-to-one tuition is available and most of the time the student is on their own and it is their own responsibility to seek the answers to their questions.
  • Cost for courses is still 4 figures and not all online courses offer finance assistance.
  • Less social and independence skills will be developed if student stays at home.
  • Students cannot access facilities offered by their University as they are working from home.

Sources

https://learn.org/articles/What_are_the_Advantages_of_Campus-Based_Education_vs_Online_Education.html

http://online.illinois.edu/articles/online-learning/item/2017/06/05/5-benefits-of-studying-online-(vs.-fac

e-to-face-classroom)

https://mycollegeguide.org/blog/2017/05/online-classes-vs-traditional-classes/