What can Online Learning do for you?

Online learning is becoming increasingly popular. Several college courses are adapting a hybrid model of learning. Students are in the classroom part of the time, and spend the other part taking the class online. And I’m sure we’ve all seen the commercials about getting your degree in your pajamas. While most of us are hesitant about this new format, since we prefer human interaction, there are several benefits to taking a course online.

1. Convenience. With an online course, you can learn anytime, anywhere, and at your own pace. You can do it in the comfort of your own home, a library, a coffee shop, or your favorite place with wifi. The material is easily accessible and you will do better since you can spend as much time as you want on lessons and activities

2. Student-Centered teaching. Online courses use several different modalities for learning. You can read text and articles, watch videos, listen to audio, and participate in online discussions.

3. Increases student interaction. Participating in discussions is less intimidating since there is anonymity in an online environment. Even if you are in the course as your name, you may never see or meet your classmates. There is also an equal playing field. In a lecture class, there could be a couple students who are dominating discussion. Through online learning, everyone contributes to the discussion (it could be required).

4. Increases technology skills. Let’s face it, some of us have better computer skills than others and we could all improve on what we know. Taking a class online gives you the opportunity to experience and get familiarized with the computer and new technologies.

5. The instructor is easily approachable. In the classroom, you  might be nervous to approach the instructor, there might be a long line, or there could be limited availability for other reasons. In an online class, you are sending messages and participating in discussions with your facilitator.

With the help of the Department of Education, the Florida Literacy Coalition is launching an online tutor training course this November. Community Based Organizations throughout the state will be facilitating a course for their volunteers, but we will also offer a facilitated course for organizations unable to facilitate their own course. If you would like more information on the course and how you can be involved, please contact schmidta@floridaliteracy.org.

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