Difference Between Online Classes and Traditional Classes

Difference between online classes and traditional classes

Progressing and climbing the career ladder demands value addition to your skills in the form of acquiring or upgrading your knowledge. However, as a full-time working adult, taking a course or choosing a college that gives you enough time to juggle both work and education has become increasingly difficult. Here is where the dilemma of choosing between online classes and traditional classes arises. It then boils down to a simple question, are you willing to trade your handsomely paying job for a college degree that could give you an even better pay?. But, coming to an objective answer to this question is easier said than done.

A lot of factors have to be considered before you invest time, effort, and money in gaining education. In the following article, we take a look at some of the very important aspects of online classes and traditional classes, and what each setup has to offer.

Online Classes Vs. Traditional Classes
Classrooms

Virtual or online classrooms give you the freedom to attend or access them from any place. You can simply login to your classroom from your home, from a coffee shop, or while commuting to work. This arrangement ensures optimum utilization of time as it allows you to work during the demanding office hours, and study at your leisure. The only drawback of this situation is that it is a solitary activity unlike a traditional classroom. This reduces your chances of meeting new people and being exposed to a certain environment that could have been.

The first important point to be noted about traditional classes is that they are bound by geography. They are always conducted within the confines of a classroom, putting a limitation on the number of seats, and thus reducing its reach to aspiring students. This may also demand staying on a campus, as classes conducted by visiting faculty could be scheduled at odd hours. On the plus side, conventional classes allow one-on-one interaction with professors and fellow students, fostering long-term relationships and building networks.

Commute
Online classrooms do not require students to commute, as they can be attended from anywhere. The expense these classes demand is that of good Internet speed. Given this, virtual classrooms can be attended without any disturbance from the comforts of your own home.

Unless you are staying on campus, pursuing a conventional type of education demands that you compulsorily commute everyday. This means you have to commute at a given hour and for a given time period. This means that one has to incur an additional expense for the necessary commute.

Scheduling
The best part about virtual classes is that you can attend these classes anytime you want. On days when a guest faculty/teacher will be hosting a class, you can record the same and listen to it at your convenience. The freedom in scheduling classes works in favor of every student as it gives one enough leeway in making time to study in a tight schedule.
A traditional class setup demands that you attend classes and be present for each lecture at a designated time. This may push you to quit your job, hire a babysitter, or simply make attending impossible if the given time seems too inconvenient. The greater drawback of this arrangement is that the classes cannot be rescheduled either. This means that once you miss out on a class, the only way of catching up with the curriculum is through other students’ notes.
Cost
Online classes only charge a tuition fee. This makes the cost of studying extremely affordable. Sometimes, the fees can be covered over a couple of months paycheck. This is beneficial for those who do not have the option of quitting a job and taking up a full-time course. It also works in favor of those who cannot spend too much but are seeking a worthy opportunity to study.
Student Loan
Without a shadow of a doubt, traditional classes are an expensive choice. The costs can be massively high, which means, sometimes aspiring students have to borrow a loan and then repay it along with interest. The fees charged by traditional schools and colleges includes their recovery of infrastructure, electricity, building rent, maintenance, besides the tuition fees.
Despite these differences what should remain the same is the quality of education both the methods of classes provide. The option that provides the best education should be the logical choice, as a small compromise can truly work in your favor for a long-term goal. While many would prefer one of the two options, there are a few students who opt for both to get better perspectives on subjects and to invest their full-time in learning the subjects, its techniques and applications thoroughly. Thus, picking the right method of learning will absolutely depend on your priorities and circumstances.

How to Start Homeschooling Your Child

The popularity of homeschooling has seen a phenomenal rise in the last decade or two. There are plenty of attributes that have contributed to this rise. Parents prefer to home-school their kids to keep them away from the peer pressure and stressed atmosphere of the school. Moreover, in a home-school, your child gets single-minded attention, unlike in a public school, where there are at least twenty students in a class. With this form of education, you can keep the child under your supervision and also get to spend more time with him/her. But it also has its own set of drawbacks, that cannot be ignored. The most obvious one being – the child missing the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to attend the institution called “school”! The school atmosphere is completely different from the atmosphere at home, and in a school there is more focus on discipline, schedule and team work.

The choice to opt for homeschooling kids depends entirely on the parents. Keep in mind the following – to make the idea work, you will have to compromise your career and completely devote yourself in educating your child/children. Alternatively, you can hire a home-school teacher to educate your kids, but still, you have to be around to make sure that the teacher is doing the job well.

Getting Started with Homeschooling

It is an old concept, that has been popular since a long time. It is a legally approved concept in the United States (the state regulations may differ). As it gained popularity in the United States, the universities also started accepting students from such educational backgrounds. Thus the parents need not worry about the future education of their child and should focus more on designing the study technique and curriculum. To make the program a success, the atmosphere in the house should also be calm and conducive to study. Design the room using various charts and posters and create a fun atmosphere, for the child to study. Make it a point that you use a table and chair for studying, as the posture you keep while studying is also important.

#Step 1: Check the Regulations
Though the process is legal, the state regulations may differ. So, as the first step, do some research and understand the rules and regulations about homeschooling, in your state. Some states are quite liberal and do not even require you to notify the concerned authorities about the decision taken. Semi-Liberal states require you to notify them about the decision they make. The third category is the slightly strict states. The regulations in these states require you to periodically submit, the progress and evaluation report of the kid. And in the states that have the most strict regulations, the parents need to get the designed syllabus approved before they proceed with their decision. Some states that are strict regarding homeschooling require you to get certified for the teaching process, or allow you to keep only certified people as home teachers. The regulations also have mention of the number of days per year you need to teach the kids. Thus, you need to determine under which category your state belongs to and understand the rules thoroughly.

#Step 2: Design the Curriculum
Once you have complied with all the rules, the next important step is designing the syllabus. This is the most crucial step. You have many options to design the homeschooling curriculum. Think and determine what kind of education you want to give your child, and what you want to focus on. For example, for those who want to focus on arts, the arts related subjects should be the major crux of the syllabus. But to develop the all round intelligence of the kid, the curriculum should be a mix of all the subjects. For stricter states, the curriculum needs to be in conjunction with the state education curriculum. There are plenty of choices available for you to choose the right syllabus for your kid. In addition, there are many online packages and books based on grades available.

#Step 3: Plan a Schedule
To instill discipline in your kid from a young age, a balanced routine is very important. Plan your hours fruitfully, allotting appropriate hours to each subject. Monthly and yearly tests are also mandatory and should be a part of the schedule. But to avoid monotony in the process, you have to take efforts. One advantage of homeschooling is, you can be innovative in your way of teaching your kids. You have the freedom to incorporate your own ideas and techniques in the teaching method. You can also change the location of the ‘homeroom’ at your own will, and plan some trip to the park to make learning an interesting process for the kid.

#Step 4: Make it Easy for the Kid
Kids who have been to school and are now home tutored may find it hard to adjust to the new method of teaching. So, as parents you need to make sure that the child is comfortable with the new teaching method. The child might miss his friends – to avoid this make him join a library or a play club. This way the child will be able to socialize, and wouldn’t feel lonely.

Educationalists do not approve of this form of schooling, and believe that it deprives the children from their social life. They are also of the view that parents cannot give their hundred percent as teachers. But, if it is the only option you have, make sure you do it with perfection and dedication. With efforts from both the parents homeschooling can turn out to be a rewarding experience. Good Luck!

Assistive Technology in the Classroom

What is assistive technology and what are the devices that are used in the classroom? This technology, in the simplest of terms, consists of those tools, devices, and strategies that help lower and break down the barriers that can be created by disabilities. The use of this technology can help liberate students with disabilities and compensate for their learning problems. In most public schools, this form of technology is used in order to better physical, social, and communicative abilities of the student. Educational reforms have brought about a change in the way classrooms function. In order to make the classroom more inclusive, it is important that children who are challenged physically be provided with assistance to make the learning process simpler.

Assistive Technology in Classrooms

This is one of those technologies that are known by several different names which include rehabilitation devices, adaptive materials, assistive devices, and adaptive technologies. As mentioned earlier, it is used to help children with disabilities cope with the technologies and materials that are an integral part of the classroom today. Assistive technologies are used for different purposes. There are specific devices that are designed for students who are either visually impaired or have a vision problem. There are also devices for the hearing impaired and for those children who have learning disabilities and find it difficult to learn things. For such students, assistive technologies help by improving their learning, behavioral, and cognitive abilities. There are some students who may have a problem in communication or in understanding the information that is being supplied. There are specific devices for such students as well.

While using assistive technologies one uses both access technologies and adaptive technologies. When one talks about access technologies, the reference is to those technologies that are used in order to provide students with technologies better access to the instructional and educational material that they need to use. With such technologies, you try and adapt those technologies that students use normally. Access technologies help by making up for the limitations that are faced by those students who are disabled. Adaptive technologies help students with disabilities to move about and communicate better with others in the classroom. These technologies are specifically developed for people with disabilities. They may not have been created only for educational purposes and can be used outside of the classroom as well.

For children who have learning problems, the use of computer devices for the physically challenged and tools such as bigger pencils, foot pedals instead of the mouse for a computer, voice recognition software, large pad keyboards are all an integral part of this type of technological devices. For children who have a problem communicating due to limited verbal abilities or skills, there are devices such as voice output devices, text to voice translation software, and pictorial software that are used. With assistive technology, as is true for any other type of technology proper training is important. In order to make the use of this type of technology a success, it is important that the children and the teachers both learn how to use the devices properly and effectively. Without proper training, these devices could end up being a waste of time and energy.