Similarities and Differences Between Online and Traditional Learning

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Has the thought ever came about, “Are online classes the best for students gaining the most knowledge?” For most college intuitions they either have students taking traditional classes, online classes, or a mixture of both. As the years go on more and more colleges are either offering some courses online or full classes online. Putting together both types of classes will promote less stress for students while providing the most retainable knowledge.

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As the years go by, online classes are growing more and more in college. Back then it was almost all traditional classes with little to none online. “An analysis carried out in 2008 among students participating in traditional courses showed that they forget 70% of the course’s content within a week of its completion, and 87% within a month” (Grabinsk, 379). With almost three quarters of graduated students forgetting what they had just learned, it makes you wonder why for so long there were no online classes. According to Tabatabaei, there is an increase in adult and part time learners who balance work and family to further their education (402). Not only do online courses save both the institution and the students money, but it also gives the students who are at different points in their lives go to college. Although traditional courses show that students forget most of what they learned, it also gives students more of an opportunity for help. The results of a survey suggest that students preferred asking questions directly, rather than via email or discussion forums (Grabinsk, 384). Now that technology is growing more and more every day, we can clearly tell that traditional classes alone are not good enough to teach students. Also, we can see that just online classes alone are not as good as well, so that’s why intuitions are putting them together and helping students learn more without all the debt and flexibility.

Blended learning is still a new trend that is growing more and more as the years go on. It is a type of learning that has both online classes and traditional classes put together. With a blended learning course, the average grades of students were higher than without the classes put together (Grabinsk, 382). With anything there are always going to be benefits and drawbacks but with blended learning the benefits are far greater than the drawbacks. “... the possibility of learning at any place and time, saving time (no need to commute to classes, more effective management of the time devoted to learning, easier access to teaching materials, better communication with the lecturer), and lower costs of education (commuting, copying notes, etc.)” (Grabinsk, 388). With the drawbacks they are going to be like those of online classes but with blended learning they are limited. According to Grabinsk, students disliked how when they had a question, they couldn’t ask a teacher with direct contact (389). As we know online classes are great for budget costs and flexibility while, traditional classes are great for getting help and understanding the class better. When put together these classes provide both cheap classes, retaining information better, flexibility, and the option to talk to an instructor to get more help. This will make graduating students retain more and have more time to put more effort in school.

Online classes will provide students with less debt and more flexibility. Traditional schools provide students with the help from teachers, encourages students to ask for help, and possibility of friends. Students can gain so much more when put together rather than having one or the other. Putting together both types of classes will promote less stress for students while providing the most retainable knowledge.

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