The global COVID-19 pandemic has triggered new ways to conduct the teaching and learning process online. For some it’s a small change, but for others it’s a whole new way to teach. Most countries have already launched e-learning in their schools. Many schools have also adapted to the new standard of e-learning, with varying degrees of success. Many progressive schools had already done a lot for the adoption of technology in their establishments, which helped them to move quickly to fully online teaching during the crisis and with significant success. A recent survey conducted showed that over 92% of students and parents were satisfied with online course delivery.
Like most teaching methods, online learning also has its pros and cons. Understanding these will help create strategies for more effective delivery of lessons and measure its effectiveness.
E-learning training offers a very effective way of delivering courses. Using videos, sharing links to resources, administering benchmark tests can be done with just one click. Additionally, courses can be recorded and shared for reference with a wide range of audiences. It also makes it possible to teach a much larger number of children.
Online learning is much more affordable than physical learning. Online learning primarily eliminates two major cost points: real estate and transportation. The course or study material is fully available online and you can access it as many times as you want.
There is less risk of students missing classes because they can easily access them anytime from the comfort of their home.
Online learning can take place anywhere, as long as there is a device and a connection. A physical lesson requires the student to travel to school, but in this mode the student can access lessons while seated anywhere in the world.
Encourages shy children
It has been found that many children who are usually confined in a school environment are opening up in online lessons. They are much more open in their questions and participation. This could be due to a comfortable home environment.
Disadvantages of online learning
It is well known that students have a dominant learning style. Some are visual, some are auditory, some are kinesthetic, and so on. Online learning, which requires an individual to sit in front of a device to understand the lesson, may not be suitable for all learning styles.
Some students tend to lose focus for a longer period during virtual lectures. Boredom easily arises due to the lack of face-to-face interaction. It becomes imperative for teachers to keep their online sessions lively and interactive enough to help students grasp everything.
Although the internet is constantly expanding, the current infrastructure, especially in small towns, can be a problem. Any interruption in data connectivity can lead to a lack of continuity in the child’s learning, which can be detrimental. Also, if a child is technophobic, they may experience learning difficulties.
Lack of social interaction
Human beings learn a lot just by being around other human beings. Unfortunately, online learning removes all physical interactions that students and teachers may have on school premises. It is always best for students to be around other students to talk or discuss ideas, which is an essential part of learning. Peer learning certainly takes a hit.