Over recent years, we’ve been inceasingly amazed by technology that provides us with easier ways of accomplishing many things. Doing business, shopping, researching, holding meetings, dating and keeping in touch with our distant friends can now all be done electronically.
Elearning is one of these technological advances that allows us to learn anywhere anytime. Elearning institutions afford us professional instructors and comprehensive online courses over the Internet and can be taken up by using a single computer. These new learning opportunities were brought in by thoughtful people committed in making life easier.
However, there are people who are critical of elearning in the perspective of education. The idea that young people should learn to be responsible for their own education contradicts the philosophy that an uneducated person can’t educate himself without the assistance of another person who’s already educated.
This point has been answered by elearning sectors by providing web-conferencing programs and hybrid elearning to allow human interactions, making it not exclusively electronic. Some elearning courses require students to visit campuses and classrooms and intermingle with people.
Critics also state that elearning shouldn’t be viewed focusing on the “e” or technology alone, but also on what follows the “e” – the learning. “How do we learn?” is a basic question on which elearning should work.
We learn in different ways differently. Thus, it requires different sorts of schooling. Elearning provides us multiple learning styles and paths.
All learning is social. We learn by conversing with others. This led elearning to focus more on discussions, forums, and virtual conferences, enhancing our thinking skills.
On the side of elearning, it has been pointed out that learning starts with the learner, not the teacher. The strongest motivation comes from the call of our innate curiosity. Learning need not take place in classrooms. Courses need not last an hour. Elearning gives us this freedom and unrestricted time.
Critical analyses clarify both the negative and positive sides of elearning. They make way for the enhancement of its underlying value and the needed improvement of its goals.
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