Thinking about enrolling on an online course? But not sure what it might be like? Here’s a look at five benefits of online learning.
1. It is more interactive than you think
Online learning does not have to be isolating, many online courses can offer features that let you, as a learner, engage with other students as well as your tutors. Online learning environments, or video conference applications can offer opportunities for video calling, text chat and discussions. So, just like in-person classes, online learning can be a great way of meeting new people who have similar interests as you.
2. You can explore ideas with others
Using discussion boards allows you to articulate and discuss your ideas and questions in a way that is not possible with ‘live’ communication. This can be beneficial as it gives you the time and space to think about how you might contribute without any pressure, whilst providing you with all the information that you can read again at your leisure. Remember to make use of your peers and any online discussion boards that are made available to you.
3. It fits into your life
Flexibility is probably one of the key benefits of online learning. You can fit your learning around your daily commitments and complete work at your own pace outside of the scheduled sessions. Enjoy the freedom to complete work when best suits you – be it 6am or 11pm! Be sure that you engage with activities and make a note of any deadlines so that you do not fall behind.
4. Revisit recorded sessions and resources
You can make use and access resources put together by your tutors 24/7. This comes with the added benefit of allowing you to go back over content that you may have found tricky, allowing you to make the most of your tutor’s excellent subject knowledge over and over again! Some sessions may even have been recorded and uploaded to the virtual learning environment – make sure you take advantage of this whilst revising!
5. Learn by doing!
Many online learning courses will set work for you to complete independently and then ask you to come together or to send in the work for feedback. This way of learning allows you to acquire knowledge by doing and can help to increase your engagement and knowledge retention!
If you are thinking of starting an online learning course keep these five points in mind – and happy learning!
This article was written by Abbie, who is part of our Creative and Cultural Learning Team. She has been delivering online courses since April and regularly records and uploads free tutorials for her learners.
ACL Essex offers a range of online learning courses and workshops in all curriculum areas. Please browse our website to see courses that may interest you!
To participate in these courses, learners will need a laptop or PC with webcam and microphone, internet connection with Google Chrome browser, an email address and be able to access websites.