The Online Classroom

Online Classrooms are quickly becoming an attractive and popular alternative to traditional classroom settings. A quick search on the Internet will turn up many organizations that offer IT training online. As with everything else, there are obvious advantages and disadvantages to this form of training. A thorough investigation of the pros and cons should be done in order to determine if online learning is a possible alternative for you. For example, if you are a relatively shy person who does not feel comfortable speaking out, online learning may be a more comfortable learning environment for you since you can maintain a high level of anonymity. On the other hand, if you tend to lack in the self- motivation department, you may be better off sticking with the more traditional classroom.

In any case, some of the advantages and disadvantages of online learning are outlined below. You can use them to help decide if this is the training route that will best suit your learning needs.

Advantages:

  1. For the most part, you need to be highly motivated and self-motivated for online training to be effective for you.
  2. You can eliminate the costs associated with childcare expenses or commuting expenses since the training is done from your own home.
  3. You do not need to take time away from your full time job to complete the training.
  4. It eliminates the fear that one may have about “returning” to a classroom setting. More and more people are being forced to retrain and some may feel uncomfortable about being “older” and having to return to a classroom. This is not an issue with online classrooms.
  5. A person can maintain a certain level of anonymity.
  6. People who would normally not speak out in a traditional classroom may be more inclined to do so in an online learning environment.

Disadvantages:

  1. Again, online learning requires you to be highly self-motivated. If this is not you, you should probably consider another alternative to complete your training.
  2. Technical problems, such as computer or connection errors, can obviously be an issue.
  3. You need to be ready to make the commitment that you will complete the course. It is sometimes easier to commit to completing a course when you are using traditional classroom training.
  4. It may take longer to complete courses.

[Diana Huggins]

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