Online education is superior to face-to-face

Online Education
Image source: US Dept of Education

Inside Higher Ed published an article last week on a recent US government report surveying evidence on online education. The news is that ‘online learning has definite advantages over face-to-face instruction when it comes to teaching and learning’. For a report like this to be produced by the US Dept of Education rather than an online education evangelist is certainly a watershed in the debate surrounding the efficacy of online learning. Naturally enough, there are also some caveats but, overall, the study found that ‘students who took all or part of their instruction online performed better, on average, than those taking the same course through face-to-face instruction. Further, those who took “blended” courses — those that combine elements of online learning and face-to-face instruction — appeared to do best of all.’

The comments following the Inside Higher Ed piece also make interesting reading.

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Posted in Academic literature, Online learning
3 comments on “Online education is superior to face-to-face
  1. Lynn says:

    I am a senior at University of Phoenix online who has a 3.8 gpa. When I attended a traditional school my gpa consisted of no more than a 2.8. Reason being, I gather my thoughts at a better rate in my own personal space, and if many have vision problems like me, trying to see a chalkboard from a distance(espcially in a class with windows and the sun is glaring) is really a hassle.

  2. marem says:

    there is nothing in the world I enjoy more than learning. In fact, i’d rather be learning now!

  3. Dr. Bond says:

    Dear Sirs/Madams:

    It has been known for some time among those who study such things – acquiring an education online, whether it be bachelors masters or doctorate, results in a far superior and utilitarian product of knowledge. The reasons are many and this space is too small to mention but a few: cheaper, faster, extremely more obtainable, more personal, better one on one, retention of what has been learned 37% higher, dropout rate 68% lower, practical application of knowledge being learned can be utilized in ‘real’ time. It has taken at least twenty [20] years for the main stream of educators as well as the public to begin to understand exactly what the process and benefits of online learning are. For whatever reason there are still a smallish group of individuals who seem to revel in telling someone who obtained their degree online, that they actually went to ‘correspondence school’. And so on and so on. Unfortunately that type kind of fellow bashing is both harmful and ignorant.

    The actual crux of the matter is. . .on average, online universities turn out better educated students and more well rounded individuals than do ‘normal’ universities. It will be helpful to remember that the ‘online education’ industry is expected to grow by more than 1000% by 2020. The ‘brick & mortor’ university paradigm is expected to still be with us but considered very ‘slow and old fashion by the same 2020. Keep in mind Stanford offers online degrees, as does Harvard, MIT, Columbia University, Boston College, Penn State, Cambridge, Oxford and. . .23 other ‘normal’ institutions of higher learning.

    It seems like maybe they know something big is right around the corner.

    Thank you for your time and space.

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