Online College Overview
The field of education is becoming one of the largest markets on the internet. Despite this, a number of people are fooled by the hype promised by many online schools. Many of these colleges want to give you the impression that they are using the most cutting edge technology, which is basically a computer and a internet connection.
However, having a computer with internet access will not eliminate all the challenges you will face when attending an online college. A number of companies have spent millions of dollars researching new ways to improve online universities.
The biggest problem with online education is interaction. As of this time, there have been no interactive methods developed for the computer and internet which are cost effective. Much of the material that students are paying for now can be delivered to them for a much lower cost by mail. Once this material is delivered, it is much easier to handle. However, statistics show that it costs on average a million dollars to produce each course for an online college. Online colleges do allow students to communicate via electronic means. Digital conferences are frequently used to allow students to meet. A common concern with distance education or online degree programs is that it leaves students isolated.
Hosting electronic conferences can alleviate this problem to some degree. The ironic thing about these digital conferences is that they allow some students to get together at local establishments where they can study in person. This has led some experts to conlcude that online colleges work best when students are allowed to meet in person every so often. When students are so isolated from each other that they never meet, studies show that they are likely to have more problems. A number of online colleges also use software which allows students to test themselves on their computers.
These tests will generally be given in the form of multiple choice questions. The goal of these tests are to show students what they have learned. After the tests have been completed, students will be given feedback about their answers. If the student answered a question incorrectly, the computer will inform them of this, and it will then provide them with the correct answer. These software tools are utilized best when they are able to measure the success rate of the student. If a student peforms well, they may be able to go on to the next section, while a student who performs poorly may have to start over.
While there is software available which can do this, it is still in a primitive form. Producing a high quality interactive program is beyond the cost of most companies. It is estimated that only large multinational corporations will be capable of designing the best interactive software. However, as advances in internet technology continues to increase, the prices for high quality interactive media will continue to drop. Another problem you will run into on the internet is certification issues. Anyone can build a website claiming to be an authority, and those looking to attend an online college will be overwhelmed with the number of choices available.
The last thing you want to do is waste your time and money paying for an online college which is not legitimate. It is likely that we will see the rise of a large number of organizations in the next few years which will be dedicated to separating accredited online colleges from those which are fake. Each online college you attend should offer what is called a Virtual Learning Environment. A VLE is software designed to help teachers manage courses for their students. The system will often be capable of monitoring the progress of a student.
There are a number of advantages to using VLEs for online education programs. They will dramatically reduce the costs that will have to be spent on research. They will also reduce the time instructors need to spend teaching students. Using a VLE will also reduce the technical skills which are needed to run the program. These programs will also provide services for people who use the internet as an important source of information. However, it is also important to make sure these tools are effectively used by students and staff.