Long Distance Education

What is distance learning?
Distance learning includes learning through various means of correspondence, such as the mail or the internet. While it may sound modern, distance education has been around since 1728, when it was introduced in Boston. The postal service was used to send weekly lessons and study material to students around the country. While the idea did not immediately catch on and grow to what it is today, distance education did gain a strong foothold in a number of fields, in particular agriculture. For people living in rural areas with little educational opportunities available, distance education brought about a true revolution. The idea of distance learning slowly but steadily caught on; and soon the British used distance learning in their newly claimed territories. The University of London was in fact the first college to offer full distance learning degrees in the fine arts and literature in 1858.

A Brief History of Long Distance Education
With the invention of the radio, an important milestone in long distance education was reached, and people all around the world, particularly those in desolate places could obtain an education fairly easily. Distance education through radio proved to be a great success for people living in the rural areas of the Arctic Circle. Still, long distance education didn’t really become popular until the internet had reached each and every part of the world. The relative ease of access to computers and internet spurred the most remarkable growth in long distance education ever seen. Far beyond the estimates of analysts, ‘e-learning’ as it is known, is now the most widely used form of education around the globe. From colleges and universities to large businesses – computers and the internet have become the preferred medium of education. Thanks to long distance education, a student anywhere in the world can enroll in almost any degree program thinkable, and obtain his or her education at a fraction of the price charged by traditional colleges.

What are the advantages of distance learning?
One of the biggest advantages of a long distance education, and probably the one that appeals to students the most, is the ability to take classes from anywhere, at any time. Using a simple internet connection, students can explore a wealth of study materials on virtually every subject. Long distance learning also helps increase a person’s communication abilities, in particular their writing skills. By interacting with teachers and class fellows from around the world, students develop a broad perspective of different cultures and learn to appreciate and understand different traditions around the globe. In the past decade or so, the popularity of long distance education has also seen an increase due to a large number of working professionals enrolling in various courses. Today’s challenging and rapidly evolving job market provides security only to those who are properly qualified in their fields and continue their education by gaining additional certifications and degrees. For a working professional, driving to a college campus through hours of traffic after a hectic day at the office is not a viable option. Many professionals also wish to spend time at home, with their families and children after a long day of work. Single parents who do not wish to sacrifice their family lives also actively enroll in long distance education programs.

Frequently Asked Question(s)

Q:Can you name a few mediums of communication in Long Distance Education?

A:Long distance education has gained much popularity of the past few years. Now students in far off places can acquire higher education without having to go to college. The most commonly used mediums for long distance education include the following: internet, educational television, direct broadcast satellite, internet radio, live streaming, telephone, voicemail, fax, and more.

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