Adventures in Online Learning

Adventures in Online Learning
(Source and Permission Granted: Non-Profit Colleges Online)

Although many people lack a respect for online learning, online education has a long history in the academy, including at elite universities like the University of Wisconsin-Madison and UCLA.  In the above infographic, one has an opportunity to see how online education continues to play an instrumental role in educating numerous people across the nation and world.

Dr. Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison

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  1. Why can’t online Universities compete with the Big Universities? In a word, infrastructure. The threat posed by the various online programs will be profound. Consider this: What will be done with the infrastructure that will be left empty? Classrooms and dormitories vacated as a result of students opting for a new way of educating. I envision classrooms being used for other things, like adult education, remedial lessons and housing for the homeless. In some instances, there will be a need for on campus teaching but they may be facilitated by robotics, nano-technology and new neuro-scientific ventures. This is not a ‘if thing’ but a ‘when thing’.

    1. There’s still too much elitism present to make online universities as important as brick and mortar universities, and I don’t see right now that brick and mortar universities will ever be completely eliminated, especially as long as capitalism remains the global dominant. I do agree with you, though, that online universities will become even more important and powerful than they are today.

  2. Great information here, and still, I don’t ever want education to be replaced by a computer screen. I like voices and classrooms too much. Took my first online class this past summer and it was torture. There was no direct teaching, just someone giving me a schedule and due dates. I mean, how could I even know it was an actual professor? It could have been his assistant or something.
    Online classes are basically self-study courses with due dates and online portals to navigate. Not impressed. Also I would add on the CON’S that there is no sense of community (no matter how hard a professor tries to build one) in an online space. My professor forced us to respond to each others comments in a discussion forum and I thought it was not natural, and definitely not as enjoyable as a lively classroom discussion. Also, I think a lot of online programs that are not attached to legit brick and mortar schools have had a hard time building up credibility. A lot of those for-profit online schools aggressively fight to lure students in. It’s great that many people are offered an opportunity to go to school, but at what cost? I know personally from working abroad that those for-profit online schools are shady. I worked for a company that would call people up all times of day just to get them to authorize being contacted by a rep. from the school. Education, then, is just profit-driven. But in that sense, online schools don’t differ from brick and mortars.

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