The Unexpected Benefits of Online Education

Technology has shaped countless industries. It has radically changed how we consider medicine, finances, media and countless other facets of life once taken for granted. But arguably, technology’s most profound impact has been on education – an industry that, itself, shapes the minds of tomorrow.

Specifically, technology rears its head in online schooling. Once considered a fringe section of the overall education industry, online schools now account for a significant (and rapidly growing) share of education. And with this boom in online learning comes unexpected benefits. In this article, explore some surprising advantages of online learning.

It Hones Soft Skills

Online schools are often self-paced and asynchronous. Students learn individually, and at their own speed – as opposed to the strictly paced, communal learning that happens in brick-and-mortar classrooms. They create their own schedules, and self-monitor their progress to ensure they adhere to their goals.

As such, online learners hone their time management and self-motivation skills – two critically important soft skills in the workplace. Students also sharpen their online communication, organization and digital teamwork skills.

It Prepares Students for an Increasingly Online Work World

Time management and self-motivation aren’t the only two soft skills taught through online schools. Because of the online nature of e-schools, students also sharpen their online communication, organization and digital teamwork skills. Their schooling more closely reflects the modern workplace, which is increasingly online and held together by digital communication and remote teams.

Fifty years ago, when office jobs largely involved manual tasks and paper-based administration, a brick-and-mortar school made sense as a preparatory space for the workplace. Now, it looks outdated and out of touch.

Its Multimedia Elements Hold Students’ Engagement

Online schools set themselves apart in their innovative use of multimedia elements. When a students take an English class in a traditional classroom, they mainly encounter one type of media – paper books. This favors kids who are “reading/writing learners” in the VARK model, but it can disengage other students.

By contrast, when a student takes an ENG4U course online, they encounter several types of media: videos, photo presentations, interactive learning models, podcasts, etc. By virtue of this diverse approach, students of all stripes and learning styles find ways to absorb and retain the course materials.

Its Self-Paced Model May Allow Students to Fast-Track Their Education

As mentioned, the best online schools run on a self-paced model. Students who feel confident in a course can breeze through it in two or three months, rather than sitting around for two semesters – feeling unchallenged and uninspired – waiting for the rest of the class to catch up.

What this means is that students can fast-track their education at an online school. A fast-learning student can start taking grade 11 courses in grade 10, grade 12 courses in grade 11, etc. They can potentially graduate sooner, giving them a competitive edge in post-secondary applications.

Technology has fundamentally shifted how people perceive education. With online schools, education now a) closely resembles real modern working environments, b) leverages diverse media to appeal to all students, and c) allows students to learn as quickly as they please.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *