Learning Methods: Online Learning

Table of Contents


At present, there has been a drastic and dramatic change in the overall procedure and system of education. This has been brought by several factors such as advancement in technology as well as improved infrastructure and communication means.

Due to technology, online learning has been possible. Online learning takes place without the physical presence of the instructor. It is structured learning which involves online teaching in the absence of the instructor.

Online learning draws resources that are physically distant from the point where the learning is initiated and includes the use of the following, ROMs, the use of the media correspondence course material and audiotapes, the internet, computers, among others.

Face to face teaching, on the other hand, is the normal teaching which involves the direct interaction of teacher and student when learning. Online teaching can be compared with face to face teaching on the following. (Galbraith, 1998).

Financial cost

Online classes are thought to be more expensive when compared to the face to face learning. This is because most of the universities and colleges which use the online classes charge a double price. Online classes are normally used by the working class due to the huge money set on them. This is because it is an anytime-anywhere learning program that involves distant learning.

Many of the working class usually complain of the huge debts and bills which they usually incur. Most of the universities which offer online services usually assist these students financially hence adding to their debts. As a result, this becomes an expensive system for the ordinary man to use due to the huge costs associated with it.

These costs also lead to poor performance in these students since those who are not able to pay usually think about how to cater to these huge debts and lack of concentration in class.

On the other hand, face to face learning is cheap since, with the face to face learning, it involves direct interaction between teacher and student, and no expenses are incurred when using this system. It only involves the use of the teacher and the blackboard when teaching and no more expenses. (Galbraith, 1998).


Online classes lack supervision. With the online classes, the students are only given the instructions and deadline for submission of the work. The instructor is usually not available to guide the student on how well to work on the project, and this might lead to poor performance in these students. All the reading and assignments are given to the student to go and research on their own.

This becomes difficult for these students since they have no instructor to guide them on how to work with these assignments. On the other hand, face to face classes means direct supervision by the instructor. You find that these students interact with their supervisors and can ask them for assistance whenever a problem arises. These students are in a position to do well because they always have the instructor to assist them. (Galbraith, 1998).


Online classes tend to be convenient. You find that online classes mean the student can learn anywhere anytime and hence enables these students to do other work. Students can learn at their own convenient time since they are usually given a submission date for their work, which means that they can do the work at their own time hence having time for other work.

The online classes are flexible since they often offer any type of class desired. They also provide access to the faculties. With online classes, the precise time to take the class often depends on the student’s desire.

This can make it more convenient for those students who are still working since they can have a schedule for their course work. On the other hand, face to face classes is not usually convenient. This is because there is a time schedule for attending these classes as per the instructor’s time. These students are supposed to abide by this time, and this can affect their other work. (Rossman, 1995).

Availability of the courses

With online learning, most of the courses can be found online. This makes it comfortable for the students since they can choose the course they want and do. This also reduces the time these students could have wasted when searching for the colleges which offer these courses.

On the other hand, face to face has a disadvantage. This is because not all universities and colleges offer these courses. You find that it’s only a few universities which offer these courses. As a result, you find that it becomes difficult for these students to do the course they want when not offered. (Rossman, 1995).

Size of the class

Online classes can train more than 200,000 students at one time. With online teaching, a large number of students can be trained by one tutor hence making it better for these students. As a result, online teaching can be seen as more effective since more students can be taught by a single tutor. On the other hand, face to face learning requires a single tutor teaching a small number of students. This is a slow process and takes a lot of time. (Albrecht, 1997).


Online classes seem to be more convenient than the face to face classes. This is because online classes have more advantages than the face to face classes. With online classes, modern education has been simplified since people can learn when still working. They seem to be more convenient than the face to face classes and hence should be encouraged.


Galbraith, M. W. (1998): Adult Learning Methods: A Guide for Effective Instruction. Krieger Publishing Company.

Rossman, M. (1995): Facilitating Distance Education: Journal Issue.

Albrecht, R. (1997). A New Learning System for the 20th Century. The Western Governors University.

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