Online learning in the sunshine

3 Advantages of Online Classes

If you want to know the benefits of online classes, here are the top three. Good online courses exploit these fundamental advantages. Students are able to enjoy studying online on their terms.

1. Study Anywhere You Want To

Man taking online classes at home.

For many people, the number one advantage of online classes is getting to choose where you study. You can get creative here but, let’s face it, a desk or the lounge are the most likely places to get some serious study done.

Personally, I prefer reclining on a chaise lounge, with all the roominess and comfort you could ask for. I know other people who prefer to sit at a desk, either at home or in an office at work.

You can study at these same places if you are taking a traditional face-to-face course. But you’ll also have to spend time in the classroom. You’ll be sitting a non-comfy chair for an hour or more at a time — no flexibility there. And the class could be noisy and full of distractions.

If you want physical comfort and the ideal atmosphere, online classes are the way to go. The place you study is a place you choose for yourself.

2. Escape the Limitations of Physical Travel

University students online

Online classes mean literally not travelling at all. That’s the second key advantage.

You can be browsing through social media for fun one moment and, within a second, switch to your online education portal. Everything you need to study online is contained on your internet-connected device.

Compare that to the alternative of having to physically get to classes. Start the timer from when you prepare for travel, which could involve showering and changing clothes. And you’re not done until you’re back inside your home or office. Total time consists of:

  1. preparing for the class in terms of dress and physical presentation
  2. commuting to the university, college, institute or school, whether by public transport, private vehicle, cycling, walking, etc
  3. getting to the actual classroom before it begins, including across-campus walk, stairs, lifts, etc
  4. waiting for the class to start since you arrived early
  5. actual teaching and learning
  6. return travel, which might include waiting for a bus or to be collected.

Physically getting to and from classes is a time-consuming business. And it’s also limiting. Your only study options are at places near to where you live or work.

In contrast, online learning allows you to easily study with education providers from all over the globe. Your “travel range” expands from your town and city to countries far, far away. Escaping the travel barrier should allow you to find a cheaper, better course than what’s available locally.

3. A Fully Flexible Weekly Schedule

Mother holding baby and laptop

The theme of studying on your terms continues with the third advantage on our list. A fully flexible weekly schedule is yours when you take online classes.

Course instructors are very aware that most people doing online courses want flexibility. Often, adult students work full-time and may even have family responsibilities on top of that. Instructors accommodate student wishes by, essentially, allowing them to study at whatever times students choose.

Recorded lectures, self-paced lessons and text-based communication all allow students to fit study into their weekly schedule. Rarely are you required to be online on at a specific time. Instead, you can squeeze study into the best times of the day for you, which could be first thing in the morning, at lunchtime, or late at night.

Further reading on the benefits of online study

For more discussion on the benefits of online learning, see this excellent article by Clare McLoghlin from the Learning Lab. She explains why “online learning is good” and why more students are taking up the online study option each year.

5 Responses

  1. James Walters
    | Reply

    My favorite advantage is the flexibility! As someone who works in the day, I can go through the attended lectures at night and I can complete the coursework then. It has been a very helpful set-up for me and I would recommend it to others who think they don’t have the time for this.

  2. Jackie W.
    | Reply

    As a mum with a husband who works full time, I didn’t just want to be sitting around doing nothing. Both our children are still quite young so I wanted to make use of the free time I had between naps, feedings, and other needs for my kids. Being able to seek out online education has been such a HUGE blessing for me. I will be finishing up next year, just in time for the older of the two to start school which means I will be able to have a career!

  3. Kevin Wilson
    | Reply

    If you haven’t attended college, you might want to go to traditional classes. However, online classes do have benefits (as mentioned here). They are not for everyone and they do require discipline. Traditional college classes will penalize you for skipping classes. Online classes may be easier to “skip” but you’re only hurting yourself. If you have the mental discipline to keep up with your homework, online classes are a great alternative.

  4. Brie M.
    | Reply

    After 2020, I reconsidered my educational plans. I had intended on going to a university but COVID-19 convinced me that maybe there are better options out there. I have come to find out what I want to get an education for, I would be saving several thousand and I would be able to complete my learning in less time. Talk about a win-win! I think it is silly not to consider online education at this point.

  5. Jasmine Hewitt
    | Reply

    online study gives so much more flexibility than traditional schooling. I like seeing more people gravitate towards online courses.

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