The Difference between Classroom Learning Programs and Distance Learning Programs

  • Classroom Learning Programs

Classroom learning programs use long - established method of campus classroom meetings to deliver course details and help students in debate and conversation. Students can come at the given place and time to participate in the class lectures, study groups, labs, and exams. The environments in Classroom Learning are more organized than Distance Learning courses. It also offers face-to-face dealing with the professors and fellow students.

  • Distance Learning Programs

After its inception, Distance Learning has been usually available with delivering exams and course materials through the post for the correspondence courses. Nowadays, eLearning, distance learning, and online courses use different forms like information technology, media, and Internet for delivering course materials.

Distance Learning courses provide course materials through asynchronous lectures, live streaming lectures, webinars, content management systems, and PowerPoint presentations. Communication and group discussions between students and faculty become apparent through chat rooms, email, and message boards.

  • Course Duration

Some distance courses permit students to watch the lectures online and also take exams with their own convenience. Provided the chance to study at own pace, the students can complete the degree course faster than with the classroom setting. In contrast, some distance programs are also available which have lectures at given times, with assignments and examination deadlines.

  • Technical Requirements

While the Classroom on-campus courses may need students to have their individual computer with software, the Distance Learning courses need a much superior technology. Students should have every day access of email, Internet, different software programs, and hardware like headsets or web camera in a few cases.

  • Cost

Finally, the Distance Learning sometimes can be lesser expensive compared to the Classroom Learning. As courses are usually taken online, residency limitations do not affect the tuition rates. All the study materials are available online which lessen the textbook costs. Some schools also provide tuitions or discounts in fee for the online distance courses not available in the on-campus programs.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Distance Learning Vs Classroom Learning

It is stated that the distance education was originally provided by the University of London in the 1850s. Hence, Distance Learning is relatively old, however; this concept is getting more and more popular now. People have become more interested in finding new ways of learning, so the followers of distance education are increasing. Though, some people have confidence in older school methods that Classroom Learning provides. Let’s evaluate the advantages and disadvantages of distance vs. classroom learning.

Advantages of Distance Learning

  • Study at Your own Pace: Different students find different concepts hard to learn. While you get enrolled in the Distance Learning course, you can do study at your own pace and spend more time for the concepts that you find hard and spend lesser time on concepts you find straightforward. So, the course structure is less rigid.
  • Liberty in Study Hours: You can select your own study hours in the distance learning courses. It gives you sufficient time to go for the other interests you have.
  • Self-determining Learning: The knowledge or information you obtain will have a better scope of distance learning courses. Your information will not stay confined to the course materials or the professor or teacher. You can discover the domain which interests you, so you can select the depth for which you wish to study the subject.
  • Time, Comfort, and Money: It saves ample money and time with the value of traveling. Other operating expenses like bags, books, stationary material, etc. may also be accumulated on. In addition, you can select the study environment which you are comfortable with like your room, some local café, or your terrace garden!

Disadvantages of Distance Learning

  • Study without Teacher: It is the most important disadvantage of Distance Learning. By doing a study without a teacher, you need to study completely on your own. You won’t have anybody who will clarify things that you won’t understand.
  • Limited Social Interaction: Among the main advantages of Classroom Learning include that it permits you to come across different types of people. This provides you the chance of learning about diverse cultures. It will not take place in the Distance Learning courses.
  • No Periodic Evaluation: A teacher keeps an eye on students’ progress in all the subjects. Despite the standard exams which are organized, a teacher can arrange surprise tests or quizzes to assess students. It doesn't happen with the Distance Learning courses. You just can’t evaluate yourself accurately.
  • Personality Development: Distance learning just cannot add the facets to the personality which the Classroom Learning might. You can’t develop traits like confidence, boldness, capability to combine with people, making friends, etc.

Advantages of Classroom Learning

  • A Teacher is Available: A teacher is a very important medium in education. A teacher may provide guidance to the students. He or she can assist them in understanding hard concepts, and thus develop resourceful study methods. It is the main advantage of classroom learning.
  • Group Study: A classroom offers perfect environment for group study. To help each other is the finest way of clearing your conceptions and strengthens them. You may also discover how to make the best preparation for the exams through providing tips to each other.
  • Presentations: Seminars and oral presentations provide you the opportunities to gain confidence. It goes a long way for making you capable while you walk into the professional arena.
  • Wider Exposure: You study as per subjects and also meet people. Classroom education provides you wider coverage. Through communication with the students of diverse disciplines, you may evaluate your individual interests in better way and select a career which is ideal for you. During this procedure, you can make friends too!

Disadvantages of Classroom Learning 

  • Inflexible Structure: Classroom Learning is having a rather inflexible structure with regard to evaluation methods, studying patterns, strategy of dealing with different topics, etc. Most of them rely on the teachers and how he or she approaches diverse concepts which can turn into a restrictive aspect.
  • Innovations: Sometimes the inflexible structure for learning may limit the scope and growth of student's inspiration and improvement. Classroom Learning cannot always offer a situation which is conducive for developing traits like novelty, imagination, etc.
  • Expensive: Classroom Learning may prove to be much more expensive because of tuition fees, course material, commutation expenses, accommodation fees, and many other expenses.
  • Stress: Stress is an important and inevitable aspect of the Classroom Learning. The education should provide you the opportunity of having a life that you wish, despite your family environment. However, stress may prove to become a negative influence for this. The stress of having good friends, wearing good clothes, using certain gadgets, doing certain things may affect the students rather intensely.

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