Is Distance Learning the Right Option for You?

By Vee D

With the world currently facing a pandemic, the day to day lives of workers and students alike has changed considerably. From social distancing minimising how often we are able to socialise with friends and family, to economic upheaval causing massive amounts of unemployment, people are now leaving the house less than ever.

Ultimately, schools, universities and even personal trainers are embracing the concept of distance learning due to these challenges – but education in general has been moving in this direction for several years. With online study and distance learning now actually being mandated in select situations, more and more people are exploring the idea of distance learning for a variety of applications.

Nevertheless, distance learning may not be the right option for everyone. Is it the right option for you? Keep reading to find out more.

Distance Learning Eliminates Time Constraints

In traditional education and learning environments, everybody is required to meet in the same place and at the same time. For those who cannot make their schedules work around these constraints, looking elsewhere for learning opportunities – or missing out entirely – is the only reality.

With distance learning, students can log on, take tests, study and listen to their instructors at any point throughout the day. Most students prefer online learning for this reason. Given that many distance learning platforms offer live classes in addition to pre-recorded instructions and sessions, students can make their educational experience work with their preferred schedules.

This makes distance learning a great choice for people who work late hours or who have responsibilities throughout the day that prevent them from enrolling in traditional instruction.

Distance Learning Minimises Human Interaction

Another major factor to consider when utilising distance learning is the reduced interaction with other people that it provides. This can be a good or bad thing, depending on who you ask and what type of class or session is being provided remotely. 

A lack of human interaction for sustained periods of time can actually be detrimental to some people’s mental health situations. Other people simply learn more effectively in person-to-person situations. These challenges are worth considering before enrolling in any distance learning programme.

However, there are potential benefits as well. Take personal training courses as one example. A personal training course – as with all forms of exercise – can be intimidating in group settings, leaving participants feeling self-conscious. Personal trainer courses provided remotely can give students more convenience and comfort, minimising their personal anxiety.

Likewise, becoming a personal trainer via a personal trainer course can also be achieved via distance learning. Companies such as TRAINFITNESS offer personal training courses specialising in practitioner, specialist and master diplomas, with both in-person and distance learning options offered. Check out their site and the options available if you want to get your personal trainer qualification

Distance Learning Saves Money

With the cost of formal instruction increasing at a rapid rate, people seeking to study any topic or obtain training in a particular field must consider this potential barrier. Not only does traditional instruction require base tuition or fees, but there are many indirect costs associated with traditional learning. These include the costs of transportation and food.

When studying from home via distance learning, many of the smaller costs we often don’t consider when pursuing traditional instruction are eliminated. It may not seem like much, but saving a few pounds every day by enrolling in a distance learning programme can dramatically lower long-term educational costs. Additionally, online tuition is cheaper than in-person tuition in many cases.

Distance Learning Offers a Variety of Choices

Traditional university experiences offer a selection of topics and degrees. When opting for a physical learning experience, however, your choices are limited to whichever programmes and classes are available at your specific location. This makes distance learning very appealing to those who want to pursue studies in less common fields that are not offered locally.

Furthermore, rather than being confined to one particular school, teacher or trainer, distance learning opens the doors to a seemingly limitless number of choices. Dozens or even hundreds of online learning programmes can suddenly be at your fingertips, allowing you to decide which ones are best suited for your exact needs and capabilities. 

Distance Learning Requires Commitment

With conventional education and training, students are required to show up to physical classes and be guided by teachers at the same location. This can be a relatively productive experience and helps keep those more prone to distractions and the like on the right track.

With distance learning, however, individuals must possess a certain amount of self-starting potential. With distance learning, completing work before deadlines, attending classes and learning subject material are all much easier to ignore given the at-home dynamic usually employed through this method of instruction. As such, a strong commitment to the course is required in order to be successful.

Ultimately, distance learning offers a wide variety of students the ability to learn more effectively and/or conveniently. Those who may have difficulty motivating themselves or who need social interaction to thrive in educational settings may need to consider alternatives. However, most will find that distance learning is more affordable and flexible than traditional educational experiences.

©FM