Common Myths About Online Education
Despite its increasing popularity, online education continues to be the subject of certain myths and misconceptions which keep people from accessing e-learning. These myths and misconceptions convince people that they would be better off investing their money and time in traditional education. It is true that the Covid pandemic and the need for distance learning that it brought made many people more aware of how online education actually works.
However, certain myths continue to persist.
Online Education Is Supplementary To Traditional Education, Not A Substitute For It
This misconception likely arose due to e-learning platforms like Khan Academy, since these platforms only provide supplementary study material to students already studying in the traditional model of learning.
However, e-learning platforms are varied and diverse. While some e-learning platforms provide supplementary study material, others provide short courses and even full degrees. People who are bound by geographical location or working schedules often resort to online learning to continue their education.
Regardless of what you are looking for, it is safe to say you will find it in e-learning.
Online Learning Is Expensive
Since courses on e-learning platforms such as Coursera and Udemy are priced in dollars, the cost is sometimes too much for students living in underdeveloped countries. This gives rise to the perception that online learning is expensive. However, nothing can be farther from the truth.
When Coursera and Udemy are compared to similar courses offered by American educational institutes, the latter charge a much higher fee. Furthermore, there are many e-learning platforms that are based in underdeveloped countries as well. Not only are these platforms tailored for local needs when it comes to curriculum content, but the fees they charge are also quite affordable when compared with traditional institutes of education. ULearn’s Teach Pakistan initiative is one such e-learning platform that has been launched in Pakistan and is suitable for local needs.
Online Education Is Only Suitable For Short Courses, Not Full Degrees
While learning new skills through short courses online is increasingly becoming normalized, many people continue to remain skeptical when it comes to full degrees. However, once again this notion is a misconception. As has been mentioned above, there are different kinds of e-learning platforms offering different kinds of education.
Many people are already pursuing college- and university-level education through e-learning platforms. The Virtual University in Pakistan, for example, is an HEC-recognized institute that allows students to gain undergraduate degrees through online learning.
E-Learning Makes Studying Harder
During the pandemic, many students can be heard complaining that distance learning is difficult, and they are unable to properly understand their instructors. However, the problem with the pandemic was that educational institutes had to shift to distance learning at short notice. Many institutes, as well as their students, lacked the resources to conduct distance learning properly. Teachers were also not properly trained in handling online education.
However, with the proper resources and teachers, e-learning can actually be easier and more effective than traditional education. This is because e-learning integrates different technologies and mediums which are suitable for a range of learning styles. Students can study at their own pace according to what works for them. Therefore, if done properly, online education can be quite a rewarding experience.