There have been many discussions surrounding the future of online education amidst the rapid development of such platforms as Coursera and edX. In 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic sparked a new wave of debates as numerous educational institutions worldwide have shifted to delivering their services through various online resources. Some people believe that distance is the future of education, but others express doubts concerning its universal applicability.
There are many benefits to online education. It is more accessible for people with disabilities and more convenient for individuals who combine studying with busy working schedules. Some experts also emphasize the advantages of using AI in education, which allows creating a personalized experience for every student choosing the most effective methods (Beard, 2020, para. 20). It is hard to imagine a teacher having enough time to take an individual approach to every student in a classroom.
However, there are also many controversies surrounding the possible prevalence of online education. First of all, distance learning is not so easily accessible as its proponents claim, and the COVID-19 pandemic has shown it. In many countries around the globe, families with low incomes struggled with adapting to online education. For distance learning to work smoothly, every child in a household has to have a functioning laptop with a high internet speed (Can online learning replace traditional education, 2020). However, not every family can afford to have the necessary equipment.
Moreover, many students can better concentrate on studying being away at school or on campus since there might be numerous distractions at home – noises, shores, or siblings online lessons. Also, the actual classroom and campus experience is valuable in itself. It fosters participation, debates, and friendships, providing individuals with memories they treasure their whole life and with a sense of community distance learning is unable to give. Furthermore, some education fields require certain facilities such as labs that cannot be recreated at home (Can online learning replace traditional education, 2020). Medicine students, for instance, cannot learn solely through online resources.
Thus, though there are many advantages to distance learning, it is unlikely to replace the traditional form of education soon. However, it is safe to say that it will continue to develop, providing more people with a choice. Overall, combining online and offline teaching tools is most likely to be the major trend in the upcoming years.
Beard, A. (2020). Can computers ever replace the classroom? The Guardian. Web.
Can online learning replace traditional education? (2020). TC Global Insights. Web.