The Internet has become one of the most useful tools in history. One area that it really shines is in the area of education. And, that does not just mean perusing articles and online encyclopedias. The ability to leverage the Internet to actually deliver live and recorded class room sessions and educational material has been available for years for college students. However, online teaching has become a useful platform for K12 students.
The ability to access educational material at any time of the day from any location that has Internet access is, perhaps, one of the biggest advantages of teaching online. It offers great advantages for teachers and for students at the same time.
For the student that means they can learn at their own pace and their own schedule. This is helpful for students who are home-schooled and have different schedules than traditional students. It is also helpful for students that like to learn at their own pace or need extra instruction outside the classroom.
It is helpful for teachers because they are not bound by a certain schedule either. It allows for them work multiple jobs if necessary. Many will hold down a traditional teaching job during the day and provide online material on a part time basis. It also opens the doors for teachers skilled in more specialized subjects to reach more children in a wide range of locations.
Not having to be at a certain location is another great advantage to online teaching. A teacher can take care of their educational commitment from home. Or, they can teach children at multiple schools in one district from one location. That means they can just travel to one campus each day rather than having to shuttle back and forth between campuses.
One aspect of teaching online that many teachers are grateful for is the ability to track everything. It reduces risk for them versus teachers bound to a single location. All the chat sessions and communication is tracked so there can be no false accusations being made that other teachers face. Furthermore, all the homework and assignments are tracked by the computer infrastructure. The teacher is no longer nervous about keeping up with homework and the risk of losing it. This also means there is a lesser possibility of teachers having to deal with troublesome students. The overall learning environment is much more productive because of the lack of disruptions other teachers face in school.
Another advantage to teaching online is that it opens the doors for more specialized education to be delivered to students in the K12 classroom. Many schools require a minimum headcount before they can offer a class. Since they are dealing with a traditional school there has to be enough students at one campus interested in a subject to justify holding the class. However, with online teaching it opens the doors to all students in a district or across a geographic location. So, the ability to offer the class to its students greatly increases because students from multiple locations can learn from one teacher via the Internet.
The Internet has opened the doors for delivering education to K12 students that never existed before. The convenience, the ability to offer new forms of education and the ability to deliver it across the globe has been welcomed as a great form of education. While it is a different way to learn and may not have the personal touch some require, it is a way of learning that should be investigated by anyone wanting alternative ways to learn.
Dr. Patricia Fioriello is the founder of DRPF Consults – the place to find the latest hot topics in education addressing current education issues. DRPF publishes articles and school eBooks addressing critical topics about the education problems in today’s schools.