Online education is a form of distance learning. Distance learning is not a new concept and certainly predates the internet. Unlike the traditional model, it involves learning and imparting of knowledge from teachers to students who are in different places. This was first pioneered by the University of London in 1858 and was facilitated by the sending of materials from the institution to the student, allowing the student to study independently at home.
Today, more than 30% of students enrolling for degree courses are doing it online. The development of technology in terms of the internet and development of online education media like ezTalks makes online education more engaging, clearer and easier to manage. The really interesting thing is that online courses are often more interactive than those of the traditional model. The benefits of online education mainly include top class instruction that allows you to manage other responsibilities and the ability to cut costs by not having to live on campus.
This British approach to distance learning has been adopted by many of the top American colleges who offer degrees via their online learning platforms, including the most prestigious institutions like Harvard, the University of California-Berkley and the University of Chicago.
There are also fantastic opportunities for free online education. A quick Google search will reveal free courses offered by a great number of top universities like Princeton, the University of Michigan and Wesleyan. At the time of writing you can sign up for a free 6-week online course in Algorithms at Princeton.
The Open University is another great way to access the best online education which is totally free. It offers short courses from 8 hours up to 55 hours ranging from introductory to Masters. Their free courses cover a range of disciplines including basic maths and English skills, introductory classical Latin, Psychology, bookkeeping and accounting, fiction writing, music theory and cyber security amongst others.
Yale provides recorded versions of its most classes and posts them online with full video, audio and text transcripts all at no cost. Some of the best online education is provided by Stanford which provides materials as well as the chance to receive exams and assignments. These courses are perfect if you want to develop a new skill for your chosen profession or for a new hobby. Prospective students can study free online courses offered by the college they wish to attend.
But this isn't limited to degrees and college courses—this concept includes all kinds of education. It facilitates language schools and teachers to teach their classes online. This is an area that is rapidly expanding into the online educational model. Even music teachers recognize the advantages of online education. Online education is also a way for companies, large or small, to train their staff. Those days of having to send staff to a specific location for training have gone away and the knowledge that is imparted in the physical world can be delivered via online video conferencing now.
Apart from its quickness and convenience, online education also saves money. Many companies, independent tutors and educational institutions begin to utilize online video conferencing to hold free online meetings.
Note: Services like ezTalks has changed the way knowledge is exchanged and its powerful on-premise platform features like HD video conferencing, file sharing, recording capability and whiteboard for annotations enables you to conduct or receive education online in high quality.