Online Learning

Online learning goes by many names. People sometime refer to it as electronic learning, e-learning, or elearning. Basically, online learning refers to learning assisted by computer and the internet.

The internet can facilitate learning in many ways. For example, a person can watch education, informative, and/or instructional videos online, including lectures and demonstrations. Also, interactive tools, games, and software can allow a person to learn and practice. The person can take quizzes on the computer to self-evaluate.

As of 2003, the United States has over 1.9 million students who participate in online learning at institutions of higher education. Many traditional colleges and universities now offer online learning courses, but for-profit institutions offer more online resources and classes than non-profit institutions. Through a poll of academic leaders, The Salon report discovered that students find online classes at least as satisfying as traditional ones.

Online learning has many advantages, including convenience, flexibility, and availability. With online learning, a person can work at their own pace anywhere where they have a computer and an internet connection. is available and at one’s own pace. Additionally, online learning offers cost benefits. Organizations can educate and train large groups of people much easier with online learning. Single students can learn with much less cost by using the internet rather than enrolling in a traditional schools. Also, online learning also allows learners to communicate with instructors and peers regardless of geographical distance. Learners can review media files delivered via the internet anytime they like as often as they want.

Most people see the main disadvantage of online learning as the lack of face-to-face interaction with a teacher. While online learning facilitates distance learning, it can also help facilitate face-to-face teaching, which many people refer to as "blended learning." Many schoolteachers routinely take their children into computer labs for projects or computer-based lessons.

Many people use online learning to facilitate institutional learning by enrolling in traditional schools and taking the classes via the web. However, online learning has many benefits for unschoolers. Parents and children can use the internet together to learn. They can learn what they want, how they want. If you want to play learning games online, you can. If you want to read informative articles, you can, and you can read them about whatever topic you want. If you want to talk to other people on the web, you can. Unschooling utilizes children's natural inquisitiveness, and online learning compliments children's curiosity by allowing them to look up the answers to their questions and research topics of interest.

You can put down lots of money for special learning software, membership sites, and online schools. However, the internet offers many free learning resources, www.free-ed.net. Also, the internet helps facilitate free non-formalized learning, with such utilities as search engines, free articles, and discussion forms. In other words, the internet has tons of free information about every topic.

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