Distance Learning: A Current Learning Process in the New Normal

Lourdes P Mendoza

Distance education is now more significant nowadays because of what we are experiencing right now. Modular distance learning programs have helped many students who are unable to attend school-based programs to realize their educational goals. With distance education, learning instruction is dispersed over the internet through an online learning portal or video conference software that some teachers may provide for them to instruct different strategies on how they can easily be understood the given topic. Distance learning might not be the best option for some students to pursue their education because they have some advantages and disadvantages for this kind of learning.

The first advantage of distance learning is greater flexibility. Students can do learning or study while they have work. This means, whenever they have work in a day, they can still manage their studies during night time and that is on how they can manage their time properly and efficiently. Therefore, students can learn and earn at the same time. That is the essence of distance learning for them. The second one is no commuting. Students before will go to their school by means of transportation. But for distance learning, there is no chance for commuting because they can study via online or through internet. Also, when they use video conferencing, some students might easily get involved in computer literacy as they can do some performance tasks using the gadget or computer programs. The third one is significant cost savings. In this point, distance learning can be an economically practical option for both students and parents. Apart from the convenience of pursuing the study from home, students will have a perfect opportunity to save more on their studies. Finally, it is convenient for learning. It is more scary to go back in classroom setting for most of the working class students simply because when shy students are there they can be embarrassed especially when they are asking questions for hard topic they will be facing or encountering. That is why, online class can be more productive than in face to face interaction.

On the other hand, distance learning, lacks social interaction. While the online class is on-going, students limit their chance to meet new faces and learning materials in the school. For those students can only interact through video conferencing, discussion using video lessons and even in chat rooms, the experience that they may feel cannot be compared to the traditional way of learning. Next, high chances of distractions, those students who are enrolled in the online class without any kind of face-to-face interaction might find it hard to keep way of their submission requirements and assignments. That’s because there is no constant reminders about when can they be pass those requirements on time. It only requires students to be self-motivated and be more focused to what they need to accomplish the tasks. Therefore, distance learning cannot be an option for those students who cannot stick to deadlines because of some reasons. Lastly, complicated technology, this implies the internet connection when this is poor or week. They cannot manage their work or task easily if the connection is poor. The way teacher explains online the topic is never easy for this kind of poor technology. So, they cannot accommodate this kind of learning for some students especially if the student is poor.

Despite its several problems, distance learning still provides better learning options for students wishing to enjoy greater convenience and flexibility in pursuing their dreams in learning. The greatest benefit of distance education is that it allows students to access numerous learning tools using minimum financial resources.